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Pub Day Shout-Outs! for January 19, 2021, featuring Cashore, Hall, Lo, and Okorafor

by Jen Moyers (@jen.loves.books)

Here are four books coming out today that I'm excited to read (I couldn't resist one more than our usual three!).

book cover of Kristin Cashore's Winterkeep

Kristin Cashore's Winterkeep

Description from Publisher:

"For the past five years, Bitterblue has reigned as Queen of Monsea, heroically rebuilding her nation after her father's horrific rule. After learning about the land of Torla in the east, she sends envoys to the closest nation there: Winterkeep—a place where telepathic foxes bond with humans, and people fly across the sky in wondrous airships. But when the envoys never return, having drowned under suspicious circumstances, Bitterblue sets off for Winterkeep herself, along with her spy Hava and her trusted colleague Giddon. On the way, tragedy strikes again—a tragedy with devastating political and personal ramifications.

"Meanwhile, in Winterkeep, Lovisa Cavenda waits and watches, a fire inside her that is always hungry. The teenage daughter of two powerful politicians, she is the key to unlocking everything—but only if she's willing to transcend the person she's been all her life."

Why I want to read it:

Kristin Cashore is an auto-buy author for me, and the original Graceling trilogy is my favorite of her work (Jane, Unlimited is great, too). It's been seven years since Bitterblue (book three) was published, and I'm eager to jump back into this gorgeous world and to meet the trilogy's characters again.

book cover of Desmond Hall's Your Corner Dark

Desmond Hall's Your Corner Dark

Description from Publisher:

"American Street meets Long Way Down in this searing and gritty debut novel that takes an unflinching look at the harsh realities of gang life in Jamaica and how far a teen is willing to go for family.

"Things can change in a second:

"The second Frankie Green gets that scholarship letter, he has his ticket out of Jamaica.

"The second his longtime crush, Leah, asks him on a date, he’s in trouble.

"The second his father gets shot, suddenly nothing else matters.

"And the second Frankie joins his uncle’s gang in exchange for paying for his father’s medical bills, there’s no going back...or is there?

"As Frankie does things he never thought he’d be capable of, he’s forced to confront the truth of the family and future he was born into—and the ones he wants to build for himself."

Why I want to read it:

This description had me with the comps to American Street (check out episode 61) and Long Way Down (here's our re-release of our Jason Reynolds highlight episode), two Unabridged Podcast favorites. And the description? This sounds amazing!

book cover of Malinda Lo's Last Night at the Telegraph Club

Description from Publisher:

"'That book. It was about two women, and they fell in love with each other.' And then Lily asked the question that had taken root in her, that was even now unfurling its leaves and demanding to be shown the sun: 'Have you ever heard of such a thing?'

"Seventeen-year-old Lily Hu can't remember exactly when the question took root, but the answer was in full bloom the moment she and Kathleen Miller walked under the flashing neon sign of a lesbian bar called the Telegraph Club.

"America in 1954 is not a safe place for two girls to fall in love, especially not in Chinatown. Red-Scare paranoia threatens everyone, including Chinese Americans like Lily. With deportation looming over her father—despite his hard-won citizenship—Lily and Kath risk everything to let their love see the light of day."

Why I want to read it:

Malinda Lo's work is phenomenal and thought provoking (I've read and loved Ash and Adaptation, both of which push the boundaries of their genres), and I think this description sounds captivating. I appreciate the examination of sexuality and racism in a historical setting, and this is a time period about which I don't read enough.

book cover of Nnedi Okorafor's Remote Control

Nnedi Okorafor's Remote Control

Description from Publisher:

"An alien artifact turns a young girl into Death's adopted daughter in Remote Control, a thrilling sci-fi tale of community and female empowerment from Nebula and Hugo Award-winner Nnedi Okorafor

“'She’s the adopted daughter of the Angel of Death. Beware of her. Mind her. Death guards her like one of its own.'

"The day Fatima forgot her name, Death paid a visit. From here on in she would be known as Sankofa­­―a name that meant nothing to anyone but her, the only tie to her family and her past.

"Her touch is death, and with a glance a town can fall. And she walks―alone, except for her fox companion―searching for the object that came from the sky and gave itself to her when the meteors fell and when she was yet unchanged; searching for answers.

"But is there a greater purpose for Sankofa, now that Death is her constant companion?"

Why I want to read it:

This is yet another consistently great author: Okorafor's Akata Witch and Binti trilogy are both excellent reads, and I'm so intrigued by the idea of a novel focusing on the Angel of Death's adopted daughter and what that means for her identity.

(A note to our readers: click on the hashtags above to see our other blog posts with the same hashtag.)

Interested in what else we're reading? Check out our Featured Books page.

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