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Pub Day Shout-Outs! for July 6, 2021, featuring Dev, Johnson, and Rowell

by Jen Moyers (@jen.loves.books)

Here are three books coming out today that I'm excited to read! This list is filled with books that are near-sure things since they're all follow ups to books I've previously loved.

Book cover of Sonali Dev's Incense and Sensibility

Sonali Dev's Incense and Sensibility (Amazon |

Description from Publisher:

"Yash Raje, California’s first Indian-American gubernatorial candidate, has always known exactly what he wants—and how to use his privileged background to get it. He attributes his success to a simple mantra: control your feelings and you can control the world. But when a hate crime at a rally critically injures his friend, Yash’s easy life suddenly feels like a lie, his control an illusion. When he tries to get back on the campaign trail, he blacks out with panic.

"Desperate to keep Yash’s condition from leaking to the media, his family turns to the one person they trust—his sister’s best friend, India Dashwood, California’s foremost stress management coach. Raised by a family of yoga teachers, India has helped San Francisco’s high strung overachievers for a decade without so much as altering her breath. But this man—with his boundless ambition, simmering intensity, and absolute faith in his political beliefs—is like no other.

"Yash has spent a lifetime repressing everything to succeed, including their one magical night ten years ago—a too brief, too bright passion that if rekindled threatens to destroy the dream he’s willingly shouldered for his family and community . . . until now."

Why I want to read it:

As soon as I saw this on the new releases list, I knew I had to add it. I absolutely loved the first book in Dev's The Rajes series, Pride, Prejudice, and Other Flavors (Amazon |, which we talked about in episode 163. While I haven't read the second book, Recipe for Persuasion (Amazon | yet, it's waiting for me in my Kindle closet, and I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the series. (This is another great one for the Unabridged Podcast Reading Challenge's "Retelling of a Classic" category.)

Book cover of Leah Johnson's Rise to the Sun

Leah Johnson's Rise to the Sun (Amazon |

Description from Publisher:

"From the author of You Should See Me in a Crown, Leah Johnson delivers a stunning novel about being brave enough to be true to yourself, and learning to find joy even when times are unimaginably dark.

"Olivia is an expert at falling in love . . . and at being dumped. But after the fallout from her last breakup has left her an outcast at school and at home, she’s determined to turn over a new leaf. A crush-free weekend at Farmland Music and Arts Festival with her best friend is just what she needs to get her mind off the senior year that awaits her.

"Toni is one week away from starting college, and it’s the last place she wants to be. Unsure about who she wants to become and still reeling in the wake of the loss of her musician-turned-roadie father, she’s heading back to the music festival that changed his life in hopes that following in his footsteps will help her find her own way forward.

"When the two arrive at Farmland, the last thing they expect is to realize that they’ll need to join forces in order to get what they’re searching for out of the weekend. As they work together, the festival becomes so much more complicated than they bargained for. Olivia and Toni will find that they need each other, and music, more than they ever could have imagined.

"Packed with irresistible romance and irrepressible heart, bestselling author Leah Johnson delivers a stunning and cinematic story about grief, love, and the remarkable power of music to heal and connect us all."

Why I want to read it:

This one is based purely on how much I loved Johnson's debut novel, You Should See Me in a Crown (Amazon | (Ashley loved it, too! Check out her review.) This description sounds SO good, and I can't wait to read a novel about these two amazing, complex characters.

Book cover of Rainbow Rowell's Any Way the Wind Blows

Rainbow Rowell's Any Way the Wind Blows (Amazon |

Description from Publisher:

"In Carry On, Simon Snow and his friends realized that everything they thought they understood about the world might be wrong. And in Wayward Son, they wondered whether everything they understood about themselves might be wrong.

"In Any Way the Wind Blows, Simon and Baz and Penelope and Agatha have to decide how to move forward.

"For Simon, that means deciding whether he still wants to be part of the World of Mages ― and if he doesn't, what does that mean for his relationship with Baz? Meanwhile Baz is bouncing between two family crises and not finding any time to talk to anyone about his newfound vampire knowledge. Penelope would love to help, but she's smuggled an American Normal into London, and now she isn't sure what to do with him. And Agatha? Well, Agatha Wellbelove has had enough.

"Any Way the Wind Blows takes the gang back to England, back to Watford, and back to their families for their longest and most emotionally wrenching adventure yet.

"This book is a finale. It tells secrets and answers questions and lays ghosts to rest.

"Carry On was conceived as a book about Chosen One stories; Any Way the Wind Blows is an ending about endings. About catharsis and closure, and how we choose to move on from the traumas and triumphs that try to define us."

Why I want to read it:

So, my favorite Rainbow Rowell book is (so far) Fangirl (Amazon |, and it's the book that launched this trilogy. (Book three will determine whether these three can replace Fangirl at the top of my ever-changing list!) Anyway, the story of Simon and Baz has captured my heart, and I can't wait to see how Rowell wraps up the saga that began with Carry On (Amazon | and Wayward Son (Amazon |


(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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