The Pond Book News #75 – Apocalypses, Ambitious Fantasies, & Authentic Coming-of-Age Stories

Welcome to Issue #75!

Sprout the sparrow, doing a curtsy with their eyes closed and a smile on their face. Their cape swooshes in the wind with their arm extended in their curtsy.

The trees are whispering…

Friends, welcome to another exciting week of The Pond Book News! Every Sunday, The Quiet Pond brings you a fresh issue of book news to catch you up on the week’s lineup of diverse book releases, cover reveals, book news, and sometimes more! Now, onwards to the brilliant books!

Book Releases this Week [February 21th – February 27th]

Like Home by Louisa Onomé

Chinelo, or Nelo as her best friend Kate calls her, is all about her neighborhood Ginger East. She loves its chill vibe, ride-or-die sense of community, and her memories of growing up there. Ginger East isn’t what it used to be, though. After a deadly incident at the local arcade, all her closest friends moved away, except for Kate. But as long as they have each other, Nelo’s good.

Only, Kate’s parents’ corner store is vandalized, leaving Nelo shaken to her core. The police and the media are quick to point fingers, and soon more of the outside world descends on Ginger East with promises to “fix” it. Suddenly, Nelo finds herself in the middle of a drama unfolding on a national scale.

Worse yet, Kate is acting strange. She’s pushing Nelo away at the exact moment they need each other most. Nelo’s entire world is morphing into something she hates, and she must figure out how to get things back on track or risk losing everything⁠—and everyone⁠—she loves.

Releases on February 23. Add this book to Goodreads!

Honey Girl by Morgan Rogers

With her newly completed PhD in astronomy in hand, twenty-eight-year-old Grace Porter goes on a girls’ trip to Vegas to celebrate. She’s a straight A, work-through-the-summer certified high achiever. She is not the kind of person who goes to Vegas and gets drunkenly married to a woman whose name she doesn’t know…until she does exactly that.

This one moment of departure from her stern ex-military father’s plans for her life has Grace wondering why she doesn’t feel more fulfilled from completing her degree. Staggering under the weight of her father’s expectations, a struggling job market and feelings of burnout, Grace flees her home in Portland for a summer in New York with the wife she barely knows.

In New York, she’s able to ignore all the annoying questions about her future plans and falls hard for her creative and beautiful wife, Yuki Yamamoto. But when reality comes crashing in, Grace must face what she’s been running from all along—the fears that make us human, the family scars that need to heal and the longing for connection, especially when navigating the messiness of adulthood. 

Releases on February 23. Add this book to Goodreads!

Prepped by Bethany Mangle

Always be ready for the worst day of your life.

This is the mantra that Becca Aldaine has grown up with. Her family is part of a community of doomsday preppers, a neighborhood that prioritizes survivalist training over class trips or senior prom. They’re even arranging Becca’s marriage with Roy Kang, the only eligible boy in their community. Roy is a nice guy, but he’s so enthusiastic about prepping that Becca doesn’t have the heart to tell him she’s planning to leave as soon as she can earn a full ride to a college far, far away.

Then a devastating accident rocks Becca’s family and pushes the entire community, including Becca’s usually cynical little sister, deeper into the doomsday ideology. With her getaway plans thrown into jeopardy, the only person Becca can turn to is Roy, who reveals that he’s not nearly as clueless as he’s been pretending to be.

When Roy proposes they run away together, Becca will have to risk everything—including her heart—for a chance to hope for the best instead of planning for the worst.

🌱 A Pond Recommended Book! Read CW’s 5 reasons to read the book here.

Releases on February 23. Add this book to Goodreads!

A Dark and Hollow Star by Ashley Shuttleworth

Choose your player.

The “ironborn” half-fae outcast of her royal fae family.
A tempestuous Fury, exiled to earth from the Immortal Realm and hellbent on revenge.
A dutiful fae prince, determined to earn his place on the throne.
The prince’s brooding guardian, burdened with a terrible secret.

For centuries, the Eight Courts of Folk have lived among us, concealed by magic and bound by law to do no harm to humans. This arrangement has long kept peace in the Courts—until a series of gruesome and ritualistic murders rocks the city of Toronto and threatens to expose faeries to the human world.

Four queer teens, each who hold a key piece of the truth behind these murders, must form a tenuous alliance in their effort to track down the mysterious killer behind these crimes. If they fail, they risk the destruction of the faerie and human worlds alike. If that’s not bad enough, there’s a war brewing between the Mortal and Immortal Realms, and one of these teens is destined to tip the scales. The only question is: which way?

Wish them luck. They’re going to need it.

Releases on February 23. Add this book to Goodreads!

Some Other Now by Sarah Everett

Before she kissed one of the Cohen boys, seventeen-year-old Jessi Rumfield knew what it was like to have a family—even if, technically, that family didn’t belong to her. She’d spent her childhood in the house next door, challenging Rowan Cohen to tennis matches while his older brother, Luke, studied in the background and Mel watched over the three like the mother Jessi always wished she had.

But then everything changed. It’s been almost a year since Jessi last visited the Cohen house. Rowan is gone. Mel is in remission and Luke hates Jessi for the role she played in breaking his family apart. Now Jessi spends her days at a dead-end summer job avoiding her real mother, who suddenly wants to play a role in Jessi’s life after being absent for so long. But when Luke comes home from college, it’s hard to ignore the past. And when he asks Jessi to pretend to be his girlfriend for the final months of Mel’s life, Jessi finds herself drawn back into the world of the Cohens. Everything’s changed, but Jessi can’t help wanting to be a Cohen, even if it means playing pretend for one final summer.

Releases on February 23. Add this book to Goodreads!

Never Have I Ever by Isabel Yap

“Am I dead?”
Mebuyen sighs. She was hoping the girl would not ask.

Spells and stories, urban legends and immigrant tales: the magic in Isabel Yap’s debut collection jumps right off the page, from the joy in her new novella, “A Spell for Foolish Hearts” to the terrifying tension of the urban legend “Have You Heard the One About Anamaria Marquez.”

Releases on February 23. Add this book to Goodreads!

Strong as Fire, Fierce as Flame by Supriya Kelkar

Meera’s future has been planned for her for as long as she can remember. As a child, her parents married her to a boy from a neighboring village whom she barely knows. Later, on the eve of her thirteenth birthday, she prepares to leave her family to live with her husband’s–just as her strict religion dictates. But that night, Indian soldiers mutiny against their British commanders and destroy the British ammunition depot, burning down parts of Delhi. Riots follow, and Meera’s husband is killed. Upon hearing the news, Meera’s father insists that she follow the dictates of their fringe religious sect: She must end her life by throwing herself on her husband’s funeral pyre.

Risking everything, Meera runs away, escaping into the chaos of the rebellion. But her newfound freedom is short-lived, as she is forced to become a servant in the house of a high-ranking British East India Company captain. Slowly through her work, she gains confidence, new friends, new skills–and sometimes her life even feels peaceful. But one day, Meera stumbles upon the captain’s secret stock of ammunition, destined to be used by the British to continue colonizing India and control its citizens.

Will Meera do her part to take down the British colonists and alert the rebellion of the stockpile? Or will she stay safe and let others make decisions for her? It really comes down to this: how much fire must a girl face to finally write her own destiny?

Releases on February 24. Add this book to Goodreads!

Book News

Cover Reveal: Redemptor by Jordan Ifueko

Illustration: Charles Chaisson | Design: Hana Anouk Nakamura | Add the book to Goodreads!

Cover Reveal: The Keeper of Night by Kylie Lee Baker

🌱 Peek our cover reveal post + interview with Kylie!

Illustration: Jessica Coppet | Design: Kathleen Oudit | Add the book to Goodreads!

Cover Reveal: Not Here to Be Liked by Michelle Quach

Illustration: Fevik | Design: Molly Fehr | Add the book to Goodreads!

Cover Reveal: The Dragon of Jin-Sayeng by K. S. Villoso

Illustration: Simon Goinard | Design: Lauren Panepinto | Add the book to Goodreads!

Cover Reveal: Battle of the Bands edited by Lauren Gibaldi and Eric Smith

Design: Jason H. Lin | Add the book to Goodreads!

Cover Reveal: The Shaadi Set-Up by Lillie Vale

Illustration: Alex Cabal | Design: Vi-An Nguyen | Add the book to Goodreads!

Cover Reveal: It All Comes Back to You by Farah Naz Rishi

Illustration: Zarah Fatimah | Design: David DeWitt & Erin Fitzsimmons | Add the book to Goodreads!

Cover Reveal: Journey to the Heart of the Abyss by London Shah

Illustration: Shane Rebenschied | Design: Sasha Illingworth | Add the book to Goodreads!

Cover Reveal: Cute Mutants Vol. 4 by S. J. Whitby

Illustration: Kassiocoralov

Cover Reveal: What We Devour by Linsey Miller

Design: Spencer Fuller | Add the book to Goodreads!

Book Announcement: Daniel José Older’s YA urban fantasy duology to be released from Rick Riordan Presents!

The two books in Older’s new urban fantasy series, Outlaw Saints, about a teen who discovers that he has the capability to save New York City from being destroyed by an ancient evil force, are the first YA titles acquired by Rick Riordan Presents. The duology will be edited by publisher and author Riordan, along with editorial director Stephanie Owens Lurie, who is Riordan’s editor. The first novel, Ballad & Dagger, will be published in May 2022 and the second in May 2023.

Book Announcement: An adult fantasy about an Indian queen from the Ramayana by Vaishnavi Patel

Book Announcement: A epic fantasy inspired by Hindu philosophy about a husband and wife by Kritika H. Rao

Book Announcement: A sapphic Black coming-of-age YA by Erika Turner

Book Announcement: An Afrofuturist climate sci-fi comic series about kids saving the planet by Victor LaValle and Jo Mi-Gyeong

“When the ice caps melted, most of humanity was lost to the hidden disease that was released.

Now, a mysterious girl named Eve has awoken in secret and must deal with a world that’s nothing like the virtual reality she was raised in. In order to save her father, Eve must embark on a deadly quest across the country, but she has no idea of the threats that await her – or the price she will pay to restore life to a dying planet…”

Book Announcement: Winnie M Li explores #MeToo and the dark side of Hollywood in her upcoming novel

Book Announcement: Gabby Noone’s forthcoming YA about cults, megachurches, and kidnappings

Book Announcement: A companion to Eyes that Kiss in the Corners about young Asian boys by Joanna Ho and Dung Ho

2 thoughts on “The Pond Book News #75 – Apocalypses, Ambitious Fantasies, & Authentic Coming-of-Age Stories

  1. Aaaah I’m so excited for A Dark and Hollow Star, it’s my most anticipated release this year! And WOW the cover of ‘Journey to the Heart of the Abyss’ is A M A Z I N G. ‘The Light at the Bottom of the World’s cover was amazing as well, this series truly has beautiful cover art!

    Liked by 1 person

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