Plain Bad Heroines – Emily M. Danforth, with illustrations by Sara Lautman
Mystery, horror, haunting, sapphic, romance, fiction.
At the school for girls, Brookhants, experience a horrific tragic accident involving two students who were in love and their story was told by a fellow student who witnessed their affair. The students’ names were Flo and Clara and the third student was named Mary. The school had to shut down as more students were dying from Yellow Jackets stinging them and they were found with Mary’s book. Nearly a century later, the school is haunted and is being used to film the movie based on their lives. The bestselling author is helping make sure everything that happened remains authentic. Just as filming production occurs, the terrors and haunting begin.
I saw that this book was extremely hyped for being sapphic and mystery horror. I have to say that the mystery horror was sort of expected to be predictable. I loved the sapphic parts of the novel. I enjoyed that at least. The pacing could have been a bit quicker. I loved world building and storytelling. I do recommend this novel for those who might be into this more than I did. I didn’t hate it. I felt it was an alright novel. I would maybe in the future reread it to see how I feel about it.
The Unbroken – C.L. Clark
Fantasy, sapphic, fiction.
Tourine returns home but as a lieutenant and to serve. She stops a near assasination of Princess Luca. Princess Luca is grateful but knows she owes Tourine a favor for saving her. Tourine doesn’t call on this favor until something terrible happens. Tourine was kidnapped by the rebels that have been causing chaos and mischief. They plant evidence that murdered someone and if she doesn’t want to be executed she has to serve under Princess Luca as her assistant and spy for the rebels. Princess Luca wants this magic that is rumored in this place and she wants it for her own to heal herself and others. She can’t do that when the rebels are acting up and she also wants to become Queen. In order to become a Queen she has to demonstrate power and a steady hand so she does whatever she can to get favor with this city. Tourine realizes that Princess Luca can’t be fully trusted with this magic and betrays her for a good reason. Tourine wants to be free to discover her own past and carve her own path.
I really enjoyed this novel. I am sad that the second book doesn’t come out for a long time. It breaks me but I am glad I found this book. I love fantasy fiction and this gave me the reason why I love it. This has complex military information and expansive world building. There is a lot of politics involved that is intricate and felt so surreal. I didn’t want to finish this book because I was slowly enjoying the plot and characters but I needed to know about Tourine and Princess Luca. This novel tells from both perspectives in third person and I really enjoyed that. I love seeing both sides because this helps world building even more but through different eyes. Clark really did take me on a journey that left me in a book hangover. I simply don’t want to go to another book, I want to go back to this one. I sincerely recommend this novel.
Malice – Heather Walter
LGBTQ+, retellings, Sapphic, Sleeping Beauty, fiction.
Alyce is known as the Dark Grace. Her blood is green and more deadlier than her fellow Graces. However, she is made harmless as she can’t use magic to cause harm as it is illegal. Her ancestors cursed the Briar’s women. The women unless they kiss their true love they die at the ripe age of 21. Aurora, the last surviving heir, is almost turning 21 and she must find her true love so that she can rule and change the rules. She meets Alyce and both combined alliances work towards making the world fairer towards Graces. Alyce finds her father and he reveals that Alyce is not only half Grace but half Shifter. He slowly teaches her about her untapped potential. There are darker forces at hand that do not want change for the better but rather for the worst. The one who breaks the Aurora’s curse is one twist that no one in the Kingdom would expect.
I had heard and seen this book everywhere. I don’t really love Sleeping Beauty but I don’t hate her. She is an alright princess. However, this book was hyped and I understand why. This was so well written and kept me hooked from page one to the last page. I finished this within a day which is hard because some days are busier than others for me. I just was like thrown into this world I didn’t want to leave. Another book caused me to have a book hangover. The whole idea that Maleficent and Aurora together really was something I wasn’t expecting. I highly recommend this book. It is so good and I can’t wait for the sequel. I’m anticipating the sequel since this was marked as the first in a duology.