Big thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for these copies!
Pub Date: 6-25-19
Adult - Fiction
The Great Unexpected- Dan Mooney: Joel lives in a nursing home and wants to kill himself. Literally. After years of being told what to eat, where to go, when to sleep, and when to take his medication, Joel has decided he's going to take his own life. His plans get thrown for a loop when his new roommate, Frank, moves in. The two couldn't be more different: Joel is a cranky grump, and Frank is an over the top retired soap opera star. As the unlikely duo grow closer, Frank promises to help Joel find the perfect way to end his life, but along the way, the two end up discovering there may be more yet to life. I felt the premise of this book was interesting, and thought I'd be in for a bit of a tug on the old heartstrings, but I just didn't get into this. There were some touching moments, but even more that rubbed me a little wrong. Overall, I didn't feel connected to any of the characters, and just felt a bit bored throughout.
Pub Date: 6-13-19
Young Adult - Fantasy
Darkwood- Gabby Hutchinson Crouch: Magic is forbidden in the land of Myrsina, along with other abominations such as girls doing math and science. This doesn't bode well for Gretel Mudd, who isn't technically a witch, but does do a lot of math. When her inventions catch the attention of the sinister Huntsmen who want to try her for witchcraft, she has no choice but to flee her town into the Darkwood, the terrifying forest where all sorts of evil and beasties live. While fleeing for her life, she crosses path with a rag tag group of witches: Buttercup, who can't help but turn the things she touches into pastries; Jack Trott, who can make plants grow with a lift of his hand; The White Knight and her band of Dwarves, and a talking spider named Trevor. Gretel comes to learn these aren't the scary villains she's been taught to fear her whole life, and they all have a common enemy: the Huntsmen. The merry band of outcasts join together in order to not only save Gretel's village from the Head Huntsmen's wrath, but also to show people that the Darkwood isn't as terrifying as it seems. I knew I was going to like this based off the synopsis, but I wasn't expecting just how much. It's a smart, funny, witty take on the fairy tale trope, and was so entertaining. It gave me such Monty Python vibes with the humor and banter which hooked me right from the start. I really loved the characters, especially Trevor, their interaction as a group was a major highlight for me. It's a quick read, and a really solid start to this series, and I can't wait to see what's next.