#waitingonwednesday: the chosen and the beautiful

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This book has been at the forefront of my mind for MONTHS! I recently received an eARC of it (thank you, Tor Dor Com!), and I can’t wait to read it! The Chosen and the Beautiful releases June 1; preorder it today!

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REVIEW: Amelia Unabridged by Ashley Schumacher

**I received an ARC from the publisher through Netgalley. These are my honest opinions, and in no way was I compensated for this review.**


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Book: Amelia Unabridged by Ashley Schumacher

Release Date: February 16, 2021

My Rating: 2 stars

CW: death of a friend due to a car crash, (click for a spoilery content warning) mentions of death of siblings (drowning)

Summary: Sparks fly between two teens as they grapple with grief, love, and the future in this unforgettable debut novel sure to entice fans of Jandy Nelson and Jennifer E. Smith

Eighteen-year-old Amelia Griffin is obsessed with the famous Orman Chronicles, written by the young and reclusive prodigy N. E. Endsley. They’re the books that brought her and her best friend Jenna together after Amelia’s father left and her family imploded. So when Amelia and Jenna get the opportunity to attend a book festival with Endsley in attendance, Amelia is ecstatic. It’s the perfect way to start off their last summer before college.

In a heartbeat, everything goes horribly wrong. When Jenna gets a chance to meet the author and Amelia doesn’t, the two have a blowout fight like they’ve never experienced. And before Amelia has a chance to mend things, Jenna is killed in a freak car accident. Grief-stricken, and without her best friend to guide her, Amelia questions everything she had planned for the future.

When a mysterious, rare edition of the Orman Chronicles arrives, Amelia is convinced that it somehow came from Jenna. Tracking the book to an obscure but enchanting bookstore in Michigan, Amelia is shocked to find herself face-to-face with the enigmatic and handsome N. E. Endsley himself, the reason for Amelia’s and Jenna’s fight and perhaps the clue to what Jenna wanted to tell her all along.

Ashley Schumacher’s devastating and beautiful debut, Amelia Unabridged, is about finding hope and strength within yourself, and maybe, just maybe, falling in love while you do it.

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REVIEW: A Taste for Love by Jennifer Yen

**I received an ARC from a giveaway from the publisher (thank you, Penguin Teen!). These are my honest opinions, and in no way was I compensated for this review.**


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Book: A Taste for Love by Jennifer Yen

Release Date: February 2, 2021

My Rating: 4 stars

Rep: ownvoices Taiwanese-American protagonist, love interest, and side characters; bisexual Taiwanese-American side character

Summary: For fans of Jenny Han, Jane Austen, and The Great British Baking ShowA Taste for Love, is a delicious rom com about first love, familial expectations, and making the perfect bao.

To her friends, high school senior Liza Yang is nearly perfect. Smart, kind, and pretty, she dreams big and never shies away from a challenge. But to her mom, Liza is anything but. Compared to her older sister Jeannie, Liza is stubborn, rebellious, and worst of all, determined to push back against all of Mrs. Yang’s traditional values, especially when it comes to dating.

The one thing mother and daughter do agree on is their love of baking. Mrs. Yang is the owner of Houston’s popular Yin & Yang Bakery. With college just around the corner, Liza agrees to help out at the bakery’s annual junior competition to prove to her mom that she’s more than her rebellious tendencies once and for all. But when Liza arrives on the first day of the bake-off, she realizes there’s a catch: all of the contestants are young Asian American men her mother has handpicked for Liza to date.

The bachelorette situation Liza has found herself in is made even worse when she happens to be grudgingly attracted to one of the contestants; the stoic, impenetrable, annoyingly hot James Wong. As she battles against her feelings for James, and for her mother’s approval, Liza begins to realize there’s no tried and true recipe for love.

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MINI-REVIEW: Make Up Break Up by Lily Menon

**I received an ARC from a giveaway (thank you, St. Martin’s Romance!). These are my honest opinions, and in no way was I compensated for this review.**


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Book: Make Up Break Up by Lily Menon

Release Date: February 2, 2021

My Rating: 3.5 stars

Rep: ownvoices Indian-American protagonist

Summary: Love, romance, second chances, fairy-tale endings…these are the things Annika Dev believes in. Her app, Make Up, has been called the “Google Translate for failing relationships.”

High efficiency break-ups, flashy start-ups, penthouses, fast cars…these are the things Hudson Craft believes in. His app, Break Up, is known as the “Uber for break-ups.” It’s wildly successful—and anathema to Annika’s life philosophy.

Which wouldn’t be a problem if they’d gone their separate ways after that summer fling in Las Vegas, never to see each other again. Unfortunately for Annika, Hudson’s moving not just into her office building, but into the office right next to hers. And he’ll be competing at the prestigious EPIC investment pitch contest: A contest Annika needs to win if she wants to keep Make Up afloat. As if it’s not bad enough seeing his irritatingly perfect face on magazine covers when her own business is failing. As if knowing he stole her idea and twisted it into something vile—and monumentally more successful—didn’t already make her stomach churn.

As the two rival app developers clash again and again—and again—Annika finds herself drawn into Hudson Craft’s fast-paced, high velocity, utterly shallow world. Only, from up close, he doesn’t seem all that shallow. Could it be that everything she thought about Hudson is completely wrong? Could the creator of Break Up teach her what true love’s really about?

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REVIEW: The Ex Talk by Rachel Lynn Solomon

**I received an ARC from the author’s giveaway (thank you, Rachel!). These are my honest opinions, and in no way was I compensated for this review.**


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Book: The Ex Talk by Rachel Lynn Solomon

Release Date: January 26, 2021

My Rating: 4.5 stars

Rep: Korean-American love interest, bisexual Chinese-American side character, Indian-American side character, Nigerian-American side characters

CW: mentions of death of a parent (father)

Summary: Public radio co-hosts navigate mixed signals in Rachel Lynn Solomon’s sparkling romantic comedy debut.

Shay Goldstein has been a producer at her Seattle public radio station for nearly a decade, and she can’t imagine working anywhere else. But lately it’s been a constant clash between her and her newest colleague, Dominic Yun, who’s fresh off a journalism master’s program and convinced he knows everything about public radio.

When the struggling station needs a new concept, Shay proposes a show that her boss green-lights with excitement. On The Ex Talk, two exes will deliver relationship advice live, on air. Their boss decides Shay and Dominic are the perfect co-hosts, given how much they already despise each other. Neither loves the idea of lying to listeners, but it’s this or unemployment. Their audience gets invested fast, and it’s not long before The Ex Talk becomes a must-listen in Seattle and climbs podcast charts.

As the show gets bigger, so does their deception, especially when Shay and Dominic start to fall for each other. In an industry that values truth, getting caught could mean the end of more than just their careers.

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DISCUSSION: why I dnf books

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DNF = did not finish

Today’s post was actually supposed to be a review of an ARC I had . . . except that I couldn’t finish the book. Then I thought, why not do a post on DNF’ing books? So I’ll talk about my criteria for deciding to DNF a book with a few examples.

Please know that these are my own opinions, which even vary against my arbitrary standards. Thank you to the publishers for approving me for the ARCs I talk about in this post.

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LIST: pick an emoji and i’ll rec you a 2021 release (pt. 1)

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I had so much fun writing these posts that I decided to continue doing them this year! You can view the 2020 posts here. You know the drill: pick an emoji and I’ll recommend you a 2021 release from January through March!

Adult releases are marked as such; as usual, the emojis aren’t spoiler-y and are mostly attuned to the cover or the general summary of the book.

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LIST: best books of 2020

It’s (somehow?) the last day of 2020, so it’s finally time to share all of the books I’ve enjoyed this year! I’ve read 227 books this year, 1 more than last year, which I didn’t think I could pull off. I had to read 27 books this month to do so, but I could’ve easily passed my reading challenge from last year if I hadn’t been in such a bad slump for three straight months. Here are (almost) all of the books I’ve read this year, not including rereads!

If you want to know the books that TRULY wrecked me this year, here’s that list. Also, if you want to know more stats, I read at 99 new books this year that I rated at least 3.5 stars! This means that I read these for the first time this year and does not include any rereads.

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SUMMARY: december

Wow, how is the year almost over . . . in other news, December was a bit of a surprise to me, in that I managed to read 26 27 books! This was quite the feat considering that I’ve been in a slump for three straight months, and now I’m aiming to read 27 total books so that I can beat my reading challenge from last year. UPDATE: I’ve since finished another book, which put me at 27 this month!

Since this year has felt like an eternity, I honestly forgot how much work I’ve put into this blog over this past year. Keep reading for my highlights of the year!

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LIST: most anticipated 2021 releases (pt. 1)

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New year, new releases! 2020 brought us so many great books, but somehow, 2021 releases are looking even better. Making this list, I couldn’t believe how many books I’m looking forward to (and also getting a little nervous about having the time to read all of them). So without further ado, here are my most anticipated releases for the first half of 2021!

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