Six for Sunday – 2019 Kid Lit Must Reads

This week’s prompt is 2019 Kid Lit Must Reads. These are the must read kid lit books that have been published so far in 2019.

This meme is hosted by Steph at A little but a lot. The weekly prompts for 2019 can be found here.

This week’s prompt is 2019 Kid Lit Must Reads. These are the must read kid lit books that have been published so far in 2019. Here’s my list:

1. The Revenge of Magic by James Riley

2. Best Babysitters Ever by Caroline Cala

3. Work It, Girl: Boss the Bestseller List Like J.K. Rowling by Caroline Moss

4. Megabat and Fancy Cat by Anna Humphrey

5. The Becket List: A Blackberry Farm Story by Adele Griffin

6. Narwhal’s Otter Friend (Narwhal and Jelly #4) by Ben Clanton

Did you write a #SixforSunday post? What was your list of 2019 Kid Lit Must Reads?

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Review: Megabat and Fancy Cat (Megabat #2)

Title: Megabat and Fancy Cat
Author: Anna Humphrey, Kass Reich (illustrator)
Genre: Middle Grade
Publisher: Tundra Books
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: April 2, 2019
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

A sweet and hilarious chapter book about a boy and a bat, two unlikely friends who bond over loneliness, jellyrolls and Darth Vader.

Daniel Misumi has just moved to a new house. It’s big and old and far away from his friends and his life before. AND it’s haunted . . . or is it?

Megabat was just napping on a papaya one day when he was stuffed in a box and shipped halfway across the world. Now he’s living in an old house far from home, feeling sorry for himself and accidentally scaring the people who live there.

Daniel realizes it’s not a ghost in his new house. It’s a bat. And he can talk. And he’s actually kind of cute.

Megabat realizes that not every human wants to whack him with a broom. This one shares his smooshfruit.

Add some buttermelon, juice boxes, a lightsaber and a common enemy and you’ve got a new friendship in the making!

This charming, funny story is brought to life by Kass Reich’s warm and adorable illustrations. There’s never been a bat this cute — readers will be rooting for Megabat and Daniel from page one!

Review:

This is the first book I’ve read with a bat as the main character! I don’t like bats, because we had one in our house years ago and it was very creepy. However, this Megabat is adorable!

I loved the way Megabat speaks. He sounded like a child. He uses the wrong verbs and pronouns, which was cute and innocent. He is dating a pigeon, called Birdgirl. The bird only coos, and doesn’t speak English. Megabat has a continuous feud going on with the squirrels in the yard, which he calls “puffer rats.” I loved the way he saw the world.

In this story, Megabat doesn’t like that Daniel has a new pet cat. He doesn’t like the attention that the cat receives, so he does a series of things to get the cat in trouble, but he only ends up getting himself or Daniel in trouble instead. Though he is a bat, this story could be relatable to kids if they get a new sibling or classmate who threatens their position. They would have to learn how to accept this new person rather than get rid of them, since we all have to deal with new people at some point in our lives.

This was a fun story! It would be great for kids or adults.

What to read next:

Megabat (Megabat #1) by Anna Humphrey, Kass Reich (illustrator)

Clara Humble and the Kitten Caboodle by Anna Humphrey, Lisa Cinar (illustrator)

Have you read Megabat and Fancy Cat? What did you think of it?

Stacking the Shelves – April 27

This is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga’s Reviews and Reading Reality. Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

I received two of my preorders from Indigo:

Love From A to Z by S.K. Ali

Carmilla by Kim Turrisi

I received a book from Penguin Random House Canada:

Normal People by Sally Rooney

I was approved for a book from Simon and Schuster Canada:

Something Like Gravity by Amber Smith

Thank you Penguin Random House Canada and Simon and Schuster Canada for these books!

What books did you get this week?

Review: Love From A to Z

Title: Love From A to Z
Author: S.K. Ali
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Publisher: Simon and Schuster Canada
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: April 30, 2019
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

marvel: something you find amazing. Even ordinary-amazing. Like potatoes—because they make French fries happen. Like the perfect fries Adam and his mom used to make together.

An oddity: whatever gives you pause. Like the fact that there are hateful people in the world. Like Zayneb’s teacher, who won’t stop reminding the class how “bad” Muslims are.

But Zayneb, the only Muslim in class, isn’t bad. She’s angry.

When she gets suspended for confronting her teacher, and he begins investigating her activist friends, Zayneb heads to her aunt’s house in Doha, Qatar, for an early start to spring break.

Fueled by the guilt of getting her friends in trouble, she resolves to try out a newer, “nicer” version of herself in a place where no one knows her.

Then her path crosses with Adam’s.

Since he got diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in November, Adam’s stopped going to classes, intent, instead, on perfecting the making of things. Intent on keeping the memory of his mom alive for his little sister.

Adam’s also intent on keeping his diagnosis a secret from his grieving father.

Alone, Adam and Zayneb are playing roles for others, keeping their real thoughts locked away in their journals.

Until a marvel and an oddity occurs…

Marvel: Adam and Zayneb meeting.

Oddity: Adam and Zayneb meeting. 

Review:

I knew this book would be amazing because I love S.K. Ali’s writing. It was so good that I couldn’t put it down!

I’ve read a lot of books lately with Muslim characters, and I love them. They really open my eyes to the Muslim experience. I grew up with a lot of Muslim friends, but I never witnessed anything like what happens in these stories.

Zayneb experiences Islamophobia from her teacher, but then is punished when she exposes it. She also experiences it when trying to swim in a pool. I can’t imagine why anyone would do these hurtful things to someone just because of their religion. One event that stood out to me was when she was on a plane and a white woman had her seat changed just because she didn’t want to sit beside Zayneb. The woman actually got bumped up to first class because that was the only other seat available! I couldn’t believe she was rewarded for the behaviour. Zayneb compared what she was doing, sketching on the plane and listening to music, to a white girl a few rows ahead who was doing the same thing. They were doing the same thing, yet Zayneb was called out for it because she wore a scarf on her head. It was heartbreaking to read about.

I loved the duality of Zayneb and Adam in the story. Zayneb was constantly criticized for her religion, on planes and in school because she was a woman wearing a hijab. Adam, on the other hand, was also a Muslim, but his outward appearance didn’t tell anyone that. His background was Chinese Scandinavian and he converted to Islam when he was eleven. Though they have very different experiences, they are brought together by writing in the same journal.

I loved this story! I highly recommend it!

What to read next:

Saints and Misfits by S.K. Ali

The Love and Lies of Rukhsana Ali by Sabina Khan

Have you read Love From A to Z? What did you think of it?

First Lines Friday – April 26

This is a weekly meme hosted by Wandering Words, where you give the first few lines of a book to hook your readers before introducing the book.

Here are my first lines:

“I’ve been locked up for 264 days. I have nothing but a small notebook and a broken pen and the numbers in my head to keep me company. 1 window. 4 walls. 144 square feet of space. 26 letters in an alphabet I haven’t spoken in 264 days of isolation.”

Do you recognize these first lines?

And the book is… Shatter Me (Shatter Me #1) Tahereh Mafi.

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Goodreads synopsis:

Juliette hasn’t touched anyone in exactly 264 days.

The last time she did, it was an accident, but The Reestablishment locked her up for murder. No one knows why Juliette’s touch is fatal. As long as she doesn’t hurt anyone else, no one really cares. The world is too busy crumbling to pieces to pay attention to a 17-year-old girl. Diseases are destroying the population, food is hard to find, birds don’t fly anymore, and the clouds are the wrong color.

The Reestablishment said their way was the only way to fix things, so they threw Juliette in a cell. Now so many people are dead that the survivors are whispering war – and The Reestablishment has changed its mind. Maybe Juliette is more than a tortured soul stuffed into a poisonous body. Maybe she’s exactly what they need right now.

Juliette has to make a choice: Be a weapon. Or be a warrior.

You can check out my review for Shatter Me here.

Have you read Shatter Me? What did you think of it?

Review: Sadie

Title: Sadie
Author: Courtney Summers
Genre: Young Adult, Thriller
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Source: Purchased
Format: Audiobook
Release Date: September 4, 2018
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

A missing girl on a journey of revenge. A Serial―like podcast following the clues she’s left behind. And an ending you won’t be able to stop talking about.

Sadie hasn’t had an easy life. Growing up on her own, she’s been raising her sister Mattie in an isolated small town, trying her best to provide a normal life and keep their heads above water.

But when Mattie is found dead, Sadie’s entire world crumbles. After a somewhat botched police investigation, Sadie is determined to bring her sister’s killer to justice and hits the road following a few meager clues to find him.

When West McCray―a radio personality working on a segment about small, forgotten towns in America―overhears Sadie’s story at a local gas station, he becomes obsessed with finding the missing girl. He starts his own podcast as he tracks Sadie’s journey, trying to figure out what happened, hoping to find her before it’s too late.

Courtney Summers has written the breakout book of her career. Sadie is propulsive and harrowing and will keep you riveted until the last page. 

Review:

This audiobook was recommended to me by a friend. The story is written partly as a podcast, so it works really well as an audiobook. There are even sponsorship “ads” for MacMillan Publishers during the podcast chapters, which really made it seem like a podcast.

One of the other great things about this audiobook was that it had many different voice actors. Each character had a different voice, which made it seem like a live production. It also made it easier to keep track of the characters. Sometimes it’s difficult for me to follow an audiobook because I listen to it when I’m driving. This one was much easier to follow because it was more like a TV show or play, since it had so many different actors who put a lot of emotion into their voices.

This story was fascinating and heartbreaking. There were many horrifying subjects, such as children being sexually assaulted, which were difficult to hear. There weren’t graphic details, but they were implied. These subjects may be difficult for some readers.

I loved this story, but the ending didn’t give me the closure that I was hoping for. I don’t want to give anything away, but I enjoyed the whole thriller up until the end, which left me with a big question. I still highly recommend this audiobook. I’ll definitely look for more Courtney Summers books!

What to read next:

All the Rage by Courtney Summers

Two Can Keep a Secret by Karen M. McManus

Have you read Sadie? What did you think of it?

TBR Thursday – April 25

TBR Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly Faye Reads, where you post a title from your shelf or e-reader and find out what others think about it.

My pick this week is An Ocean of Minutes by Thea Lim.

Goodreads Synopsis:

America is in the grip of a deadly flu pandemic. When Frank catches the virus, his girlfriend Polly will do whatever it takes to save him, even if it means risking everything. She agrees to a radical plan—time travel has been invented in the future to thwart the virus. If she signs up for a one-way-trip into the future to work as a bonded labourer, the company will pay for the life-saving treatment Frank needs. Polly promises to meet Frank again in Galveston, Texas, where she will arrive in twelve years.

But when Polly is re-routed an extra five years into the future, Frank is nowhere to be found. Alone in a changed and divided America, with no status and no money, Polly must navigate a new life and find a way to locate Frank, to discover if he is alive, and if their love has endured.

Have you read this book? What did you think of it?