The Friday 56: Pride

The Friday 56The Friday 56 is a weekly blog meme hosted by Freda’s Voice. Join us every Friday and share an excerpt from a book you’ve been reading.

Rules:

*Grab a book, any book.
*Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader.
*Find any sentence (or a few, just don’t spoil it) that grab you.
*Post it.
*Add your (url) post here in Linky. Add the post url, not your blog url. It’s that simple.

**Be sure to leave a link to your Friday 56 post in the comments!**

“These spirits and unseen things, as Madrina calls them, don’t make sense to me. Of course they don’t. I can’t see them. But it’s Madrina’s wisdom that unties the tight knots of my life…”

Ibi Zoboi’s Pride is a fresh retelling of Jane Austen’s classic Pride and Prejudice. I fell in love with the community in this one and love how important Zuri’s family was to her. You can read my review of this one hereCover is linked to Goodreads.

From the Goodreads Synopsis:

      “Zuri Benitez has pride. Brooklyn pride, family pride, and pride in her Afro-Latino roots. But pride might not be enough to save her rapidly gentrifying neighborhood from becoming unrecognizable.
      When the wealthy Darcy family moves in across the street, Zuri wants nothing to do with their two teenage sons, even as her older sister, Janae, starts to fall for the charming Ainsley. She especially can’t stand the judgmental and arrogant Darius. Yet as Zuri and Darius are forced to find common ground, their initial dislike shifts into an unexpected understanding.
      But with four wild sisters pulling her in different directions, cute boy Warren vying for her attention, and college applications hovering on the horizon, Zuri fights to find her place in Bushwick’s changing landscape, or lose it all.
      In a timely update of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, critically acclaimed author Ibi Zoboi skillfully balances cultural identity, class, and gentrification against the heady magic of first love in her vibrant reimagining of this beloved classic.”

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The Friday 56: Proof of Lies

The Friday 56The Friday 56 is a weekly blog meme hosted by Freda’s Voice. Join us every Friday and share an excerpt from a book you’ve been reading.

Rules:

*Grab a book, any book.
*Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader.
*Find any sentence (or a few, just don’t spoil it) that grab you.
*Post it.
*Add your (url) post here in Linky. Add the post url, not your blog url. It’s that simple.

**Be sure to leave a link to your Friday 56 post in the comments!**

“Keira walked out, and breath instantly expelled from my lungs. Tears flooded my eyes. It was an involuntary response. There was my sister. Alive. Healthy. No blood.”

Today I’m sharing an excerpt from another book I never got around to reviewing. Diana Rodriguez Wallach’s Proof of Lies was an enjoyable thriller/mystery about a girl trying to find her missing sister and the truth she uncovers along the way about her parents. I think if I was more a fan of the genre, I would have liked this one more. Still, I was impressed with the intricate plot and may continue the series at a later date. Cover is linked to Goodreads.

From the Goodreads Synopsis:

      “Some secrets are best kept hidden…
      Anastasia Phoenix has always been the odd girl out, whether moving from city to international city with her scientist parents or being the black belt who speaks four languages.
And most definitely as the orphan whose sister is missing, presumed dead.
She’s the only one who believes Keira is still alive, and when new evidence surfaces, Anastasia sets out to follow the trail—and lands in the middle of a massive conspiracy. Now she isn’t sure who she can trust. At her side is Marcus, the bad boy with a sexy accent who’s as secretive as she is. He may have followed her to Rome to help, but something about him seems too good to be true.
      Nothing is as it appears, and when everything she’s ever known is revealed to be a lie, Anastasia has to believe in one impossibility.
      She will find her sister.”

The Friday 56: The Plastic Magician

The Friday 56The Friday 56 is a weekly blog meme hosted by Freda’s Voice. Join us every Friday and share an excerpt from a book you’ve been reading.

Rules:

*Grab a book, any book.
*Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader.
*Find any sentence (or a few, just don’t spoil it) that grab you.
*Post it.
*Add your (url) post here in Linky. Add the post url, not your blog url. It’s that simple.

**Be sure to leave a link to your Friday 56 post in the comments!**

The woman smiled, just a little, and it warmed Alvie’s insides. “Ethel. I like that you wear slacks. I only wear breeches when I’m working, but I have to change into them there. People around here aren’t as sensible as they are in the States.”

Alvie nodded, remembering that her accent gave away her homeland—something she’d need to get used to. “They’re not very popular back home, either.”

Today I’m sharing an excerpt from a novel that I never got around to reviewing, but one I wanted to at least share with this meme. I really enjoyed Charlie N. Holmber’s The Paper Magican series, so when I heard about the spinoff, The Plastic Magician, I knew I had to check it out. I’ve really enjoyed the world-building in these books and the care Holmberg takes developing her magical system. I also enjoyed Alvie, the protagonist in this one, she’s dedicated and nerdy and I just loved all her little quirks. However, for such a small book, it felt like it dragged and I do wish there had been a little more action. Cover is linked to Goodreads.

From the Goodreads Synopsis:

      “Alvie Brechenmacher has arrived in London to begin her training in Polymaking—the magical discipline of bespelling plastic. Polymaking is the newest form of magic, and in a field where there is so much left to learn, every Polymaker dreams of making the next big discovery.
      Even though she is only an apprentice, Alvie is an inventor at heart, and she is determined to make as many discoveries—in as short a time frame—as she can. Luckily for her, she’s studying under the world-renowned magician Marion Praff, who is just as dedicated as Alvie is.
      Alvie’s enthusiasm reinvigorates her mentor’s work, and together they create a device that could forever change Polymaking—and the world. But when a rival learns of their plans, he conspires to steal their invention and take the credit for it himself.
      To thwart him, Alvie will need to think one step ahead. For in the high-stakes world of magical discovery, not everyone plays fair…”

The Friday 56: Mirage

The Friday 56The Friday 56 is a weekly blog meme hosted by Freda’s Voice. Join us every Friday and share an excerpt from a book you’ve been reading.

Rules:

*Grab a book, any book.
*Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader.
*Find any sentence (or a few, just don’t spoil it) that grab you.
*Post it.
*Add your (url) post here in Linky. Add the post url, not your blog url. It’s that simple.

**Be sure to leave a link to your Friday 56 post in the comments!**

“I swallowed around an angry reply. I had been at these lessons for two weeks now, and still could not affect the haughty tone the princess used, despite my life depending on it.”

I was really impressed with the world-building in this science-fiction debut. Somaiya Daud’s Mirage created a world that felt so real and. I look forward to what happens next for the protagonist, Amani, who must learn to play the princess nefarious Maram’s double. You can read my review of this one hereCover is linked to Goodreads.

From the Goodreads Synopsis:

      “In a star system dominated by the brutal Vathek empire, eighteen-year-old Amani is a dreamer. She dreams of what life was like before the occupation; she dreams of writing poetry like the old-world poems she adores; she dreams of receiving a sign from Dihya that one day, she, too, will have adventure, and travel beyond her isolated moon.
      But when adventure comes for Amani, it is not what she expects: she is kidnapped by the regime and taken in secret to the royal palace, where she discovers that she is nearly identical to the cruel half-Vathek Princess Maram. The princess is so hated by her conquered people that she requires a body double, someone to appear in public as Maram, ready to die in her place.
      As Amani is forced into her new role, she can’t help but enjoy the palace’s beauty—and her time with the princess’ fiancé, Idris. But the glitter of the royal court belies a world of violence and fear. If Amani ever wishes to see her family again, she must play the princess to perfection…because one wrong move could lead to her death. “

The Friday 56: Blanca & Roja

The Friday 56The Friday 56 is a weekly blog meme hosted by Freda’s Voice. Join us every Friday and share an excerpt from a book you’ve been reading.

Rules:

*Grab a book, any book.
*Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader.
*Find any sentence (or a few, just don’t spoil it) that grab you.
*Post it.
*Add your (url) post here in Linky. Add the post url, not your blog url. It’s that simple.

**Be sure to leave a link to your Friday 56 post in the comments!**

“The ache bloomed into pain.

I tried to get out of the room before I doubled over.

‘You okay?’ Yearling called after me.

I stumbled to the kitchen window.

A thick slice of moon hung in the sky, the outer edge hard and solid, the inner light translucent, like an orange segment. Halfway between last quarter and crescent.

Es la luna, mija, my grandmother said every month when this happened. It pulls at you.”

Anna-Marie McLemore’s Blanca & Roja, is one of the most beautiful books I’ve ever read. It combines two of my favorite kinds of stories: magical realism and fairy tale retellings. One of the most unique aspects of this novel is McLemore introduces a character who has really bad periods (as shown in this excerpt) and I loved how open and honest this portrayal is. You can read my review of this one here. Cover is linked to Goodreads. Excerpt from page 156.

From the Goodreads Synopsis:

      “The biggest lie of all is the story you think you already know.
      The del Cisne girls have never just been sisters; they’re also rivals, Blanca as obedient and graceful as Roja is vicious and manipulative. They know that, because of a generations-old spell, their family is bound to a bevy of swans deep in the woods. They know that, one day, the swans will pull them into a dangerous game that will leave one of them a girl, and trap the other in the body of a swan.
      But when two local boys become drawn into the game, the swans’ spell intertwines with the strange and unpredictable magic lacing the woods, and all four of their fates depend on facing truths that could either save or destroy them. Blanca & Roja is the captivating story of sisters, friendship, love, hatred, and the price we pay to protect our hearts.”

The Friday 56: Gabi, a Girl in Pieces

The Friday 56The Friday 56 is a weekly blog meme hosted by Freda’s Voice. Join us every Friday and share an excerpt from a book you’ve been reading.

Rules:

*Grab a book, any book.
*Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader.
*Find any sentence (or a few, just don’t spoil it) that grab you.
*Post it.
*Add your (url) post here in Linky. Add the post url, not your blog url. It’s that simple.

**Be sure to leave a link to your Friday 56 post in the comments!**

“Wait. You kissed him?” asked Cindy.

“Yes!” I said, super excited.

But then she went on and on about how that made me seem desperate and easy and blah blah blah. I wanted to say, “Let’s not talk about desperate and easy,” but that would have made her cry, and I would have felt like shit afterwards.

Isabel Quintero’s Gabi, a Girl in Pieces made me both laugh and cry. Told in diary entries, Gabi has such a clear voice and I loved that poetry was used as a way for the protagonist to both express and embrace herself. You can read my mini-review here. Cover is linked to Goodreads.

From the Goodreads Synopsis:

      “Gabi Hernandez chronicles her last year in high school in her diary: college applications, Cindy’s pregnancy, Sebastian’s coming out, the cute boys, her father’s meth habit, and the food she craves. And best of all, the poetry that helps forge her identity.
      July 24
      My mother named me Gabriella, after my grandmother who, coincidentally, didn’t want to meet me when I was born because my mother was unmarried, and therefore living in sin. My mom has told me the story many, many, MANY, times of how, when she confessed to my grandmother that she was pregnant with me, her mother beat her. BEAT HER! She was twenty-five. That story is the basis of my sexual education and has reiterated why it’s important to wait until you’re married to give it up. So now, every time I go out with a guy, my mom says, ‘Ojos abiertos, piernas cerradas.’ Eyes open, legs closed. That’s as far as the birds and the bees talk has gone. And I don’t mind it. I don’t necessarily agree with that whole wait until you’re married crap, though. I mean, this is America and the 21st century; not Mexico one hundred years ago. But, of course, I can’t tell my mom that because she will think I’m bad. Or worse: trying to be White.