‘Moon Witch, Spider King’ is a rare sequel that is better than its predecessor

Release Date: February 15, 2022
Publisher: Riverhead Books
Series: Dark Star Trilogy #2
Genre: Fantasy

Description

In Black Leopard, Red Wolf, Sogolon the Moon Witch proved a worthy adversary to Tracker as they clashed across a mythical African landscape in search of a mysterious boy who disappeared. In Moon Witch, Spider King, Sogolon takes center stage and gives her own account of what happened to the boy, and how she plotted and fought, triumphed and failed as she looked for him. It’s also the story of a century-long feud–seen through the eyes of a 177-year-old witch–that Sogolon had with the Aesi, chancellor to the king. It is said that Aesi works so closely with the king that together they are like the eight limbs of one spider. Aesi’s power is considerable–and deadly. It takes brains and courage to challenge him, which Sogolon does for reasons of her own.

Both a brilliant narrative device–seeing the story told in Black Leopard, Red Wolf from the perspective of an adversary and a woman–as well as a fascinating battle between different versions of empire, Moon Witch, Spider King delves into Sogolon’s world as she fights to tell her own story. Part adventure tale, part chronicle of an indomitable woman who bows to no man, it is a fascinating novel that explores power, personality, and the places where they overlap.

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Feature: “songs we used to dance to” by courtney marie

Release Date: March 31, 2022
Publisher: Goliad Media Group, LLC
Genre: Poetry

Description

the world is on fire but everything is fine. you’re invited to a party. there will be dancing. a poet falls in love with you. we want this to last forever. somewhere hidden, a garden blooms. a revolution overdue. illness and isolation. the misery of hope. the comfort of madness. a forest of contradictions. you’re not sure what’s real anymore. a ghost has gone missing. we haunt this place now. nothing will ever be the same.

Continue reading “Feature: “songs we used to dance to” by courtney marie”

Tropes are Good, Actually: Ashes of Gold by J. Elle

Release Date: January 11, 2022
Series: Wings of Ebony #2
Publisher: Denene Millner Books
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Description

Rue has no memory of how she ended up locked in a basement prison without her magic or her allies. But she’s a girl from the East Row. And girls from the East Row don’t give up. Girls from the East Row pick themselves back up when they fall. Girls from the East Row break themselves out.

But reuniting with her friends is only half the battle. When she finds them again, Rue makes a vow: she will find a way to return the magic that the Chancellor has stolen from her father’s people. Yet even on Yiyo Peak, Rue is a misfit–with half a foot back in Houston and half a heart that is human as well as god, she’s not sure she’s the right person to lead the fight to reclaim a glorious past.

When a betrayal sends her into a tailspin, Rue must decide who to trust and how to be the leader that her people deserve…because if she doesn’t, it isn’t just Yiyo that will be destroyed–it will be Rue herself.

Continue reading “Tropes are Good, Actually: Ashes of Gold by J. Elle”

Review: “Skin of the Sea” by Natasha Bowen

Release Date: November 2, 2021
Series: Skin of the Sea #1
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult

Description

A way to survive.

A way to serve.

A way to save.

Simi prayed to the gods, once. Now she serves them as Mami Wata–a mermaid–collecting the souls of those who die at sea and blessing their journeys back home.But when a living boy is thrown overboard, Simi goes against an ancient decree and does the unthinkable–she saves his life. And punishment awaits those who dare to defy the gods.

To protect the other Mami Wata, Simi must journey to the Supreme Creator to make amends. But all is not as it seems. There’s the boy she rescued, who knows more than he should. And something is shadowing Simi, something that would rather see her fail . . .Danger lurks at every turn, and as Simi draws closer, she must brave vengeful gods, treacherous lands, and legendary creatures. Because if she fails, she risks not only the fate of all Mami Wata, but also the world as she knows it.

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Review: “Coming Back” by Jessi Zabarsky

Release Date: January 18, 2022
Publisher: Random House Graphic
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Comics

Description

Preet is magic.

Valissa is not.

Everyone in their village has magic in their bones, and Preet is the strongest of them all. Without any power of her own, how can Valissa ever be worthy of Preet’s love? When their home is attacked, Valissa has a chance to prove herself, but that means leaving Preet behind. On her own for the first time, Preet breaks the village’s most sacred laws and is rejected from the only home she’s ever known and sent into a new world.

Divided by different paths, insecurities, and distance, will Valissa and Preet be able to find their way back to each other?

A beautiful story of two young women who are so focused on proving they’re meant to be together that they end up hurting each other in the process. This gorgeous graphic novel is an LGTBQ+ romance about young love and how it can grow into something strong no matter what obstacles get in the way.

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