Hello, everyone! I have seen this challenge floating around and have been wanting to participate for a while. So, I decided to jump in and do it this month. I’m not a huge fan of the theme for this month because I don’t really read classic books all that often. Instead of doing the theme (favorite classics), I’ve decided to spell the month using books from my TBR that have LGBT+ main characters, in honor of Pride month. The challenge and linkup are hosted by Jana at Reviews From the Stacks.
J – Jay’s Gay Agenda by Jason June
There’s one thing Jay Collier knows for sure—he’s a statistical anomaly as the only out gay kid in his small rural Washington town. While all this friends can’t stop talking about their heterosexual hookups and relationships, Jay can only dream of his own firsts, compiling a romance to-do list of all the things he hopes to one day experience—his Gay Agenda.
Then, against all odds, Jay’s family moves to Seattle and he starts his senior year at a new high school with a thriving LGBTQIA+ community. For the first time ever, Jay feels like he’s found where he truly belongs, where he can flirt with Very Sexy Boys and search for love. But as Jay begins crossing items off his list, he’ll soon be torn between his heart and his hormones, his old friends and his new ones…because after all, life and love don’t always go according to plan.
From debut novelist Jason June comes a moving and hilarious sex-positive story about the complexities of first loves, first hookups, and first heartbreaks—and how to stay true to yourself while embracing what you never saw coming.
U – Untouched by Jayme Bean
Dr. Julia Morrow and her graduate students, David and Marisol, embark on a research trip to explore a remote section of the Amazon rainforest. When their trails seem to change direction at will and they find themselves lost and without communication, the trio worry they may be in for more than just the latest scientific discovery. Banding together, they’re left deciding which is more important – finding out how to escape the unexpected horrors lurking within the rainforest or getting back home in one piece. The deeper they travel into the jungle, the more they realize that some places are meant to remain untouched.
N – Notorious Sorcerer by Davinia Evans
Since the city of Bezim was shaken half into the sea by a magical earthquake, the Inquisitors have policed alchemy with brutal efficiency. Nothing too powerful, too complicated, too much like real magic is allowed–and the careful science that’s left is kept too expensive for any but the rich and indolent to tinker with. Siyon Velo, a glorified errand boy scraping together lesson money from a little inter-planar fetch and carry, doesn’t qualify.
But when Siyon accidentally commits a public act of impossible magic, he’s catapulted into the limelight. Except the limelight is a bad place to be when the planes themselves start lurching out of alignment, threatening to send the rest of the city into the sea.
Now Siyon, a dockside brat who clawed his way up and proved himself on rooftops with saber in hand, might be Bezim’s only hope. Because if they don’t fix the cascading failures of magic in their plane, the Powers and their armies in the other three will do it for them.
E – External Forces by Shannon Fay
A mage for the British royals matches wits with a power-mad old foe in a beguiling novel of enchantments and daring by Shannon Fay, author of Innate Magic.
London, 1958. By crafting magical outfits for his friend, Princess Katherine, cloth mage Paul Gallagher is getting ahead. It’s not a seamless path. Not since the Virtuis Party came to power. The far-right faction is using criminals to create a protective barrier around England. The enchanted uniforms the prisoners wear may beget a demand for mages, but using luckless convicts as tools for warmongering reactionaries isn’t Paul’s dream for cloth magic.
His road to success takes an even darker turn when the unexpected death of a member of the royal family plunges the country into chaos. The Virtuis Party is rising, its mysterious puppet master is gaining control, and Paul and his allies are prepared to do anything to protect the princess, the throne, and ultimately, the soul of the country. That means falling back on the innate magic Paul dreads using again. It’s illegal, dangerous, and so potent it can raise the dead.
But as the fate of the entire nation hangs by a thread, dire times call for extreme magic.