Mini Thoughts

Hello, all!

Pub Date: 3-7-23
Adult - Contemporary

A Witch's Guide to Fake Dating a Demon- Sarah Hawley: Mariel Spark was supposed to be the most powerful witch the Spark's line had seen in centuries, but much to her overbearing mother's displeasure, Mariel would rather garden than curse. When a spell goes awry, and Mariel accidentally conjures a demon, she's thrust into a soul bargain. Ozroth the Ruthless's purpose is collecting the souls of mortals, but his reputation has suffered after a botched bargain. He's hoping this deal with Mariel will put him back into his mentor's good graces. Ozroth is bound to Mariel's side until the bargain is complete, but Mariel refuses to give up her soul. To make matters worse, the pair must pretend to be dating to cover the spell snafu. But the more time they spend together, the more they fall for one another. Will they be able to make their relationship work with so many obstacles standing in their way?

I was looking forward to this one, and it was meh. I love witchy stories, so I thought the premise was fun, but the writing style didn't work for me. There were so many moments (especially in the steamier scenes) that were too cringy for my tastes. I also felt that the characters read way younger than they were supposed to be. I did like watching Mariel stand up to her terrible family and the magical town. Other than that, nothing particularly stood out to me. The romance between her and Oz was okay but didn't wow me. The plot was predictable and felt more insta-lovey than fake dating. I may have enjoyed this more had I read it physically because the narrator's voice was grating, but I found it all underwhelming.

Rating: 2/5

Pub Date: 2-28-23
Adult - Fantasy

The Adventures of Amina al-Sirafi- Shannon Chakraborty: Infamous pirate Amina al-Sirafi, once spent her days sailing the high seas, getting into fights with rogues and princes, and collecting a few husbands along the way. But she retired from the pirate life and now spends her days secluded with her family. Amina longs to give her daughter a peaceful, safe life but when she's offered a job no bandit could refuse, she jumps at the chance for one last adventure. This job would allow Amina to set her family up for life, no longer needing to worry about their future. Amina rounds up her old crew and takes to the sea, but she quickly realizes there is more to this quest than meets the eye. Amina has always longed to be a legend, but is the glory worth the risk?

I was craving a pirate adventure, and this delivered. It had so many tropes I love, like getting the band back together and found family. I also liked the world-building and lore. There was a supernatural aspect that I wasn't expecting but enjoyed, and I'm interested to see how that'll develop more in the coming books. The characters were also well-written, and I loved the tight-knit unit they created. I liked all the banter between them. My issue with this was the pacing. It felt pretty slow, so it never captured my full attention. The action did ramp up towards the end, which I appreciated. I felt the book, as a whole, was average, but I'm still intrigued enough to pick up the next one.

Rating: 3/5

Pub Date: 4-11-23
Adult - Contemporary

Yours Truly- Abby Jimenez: Dr. Briana Ortiz can't catch a break. Her divorce is about to be finalized, her younger brother desperately needs a kidney donor, and the promotion she was a shoo-in for is now on the back burner thanks to the new ER doctor in town, Dr. Jacob Maddox. Their first meeting doesn't go smoothly, and Briana is dead-set on hating Jacob on principle, but then he sends her a letter. Jacob has always suffered from anxiety, and his nervousness often comes across as rudeness. With every letter he and Briana exchange, a genuine friendship forms. But when Jacob decides to give Briana the greatest gift imaginable--a kidney for her brother-- Briana begins to wonder if there's more to their relationship than she ever thought possible.

I knew within the first few pages of this book that I would love it. I've enjoyed Jimenez's previous books, but this one felt as if it was on another level. I adored the relationship between Briana and Jacob. Their friendship felt so authentic, and I loved how it developed naturally into something more. I could connect with them in different ways, but especially Jacob. There were so many moments where his experience with anxiety mirrored mine to a T. I also loved how supportive Briana was in those moments and how safe she made him feel. It dealt with some tough topics, but Jimenez handled them with her signature wit, so it never felt too heavy. I didn't love the miscommunication between Briana and Jacob and how Briana handled some bits at the end, but overall, I loved this.

Rating: 5/5


  1. I am SO glad you also loved Yours Truly!!! I felt exactly the same about Jacob and the depiction of anxiety and I feel it personally. And also same! I could've done with a bit less miscommunication toward the end, but I loved the characters too much to give it anything less than 5 stars!

    1. Exactly! It's definitely one of my favorite reads of the year.


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