We did not mention any HarperCollins titles as answers in support of the union that is currently on strike for a fair contract. You can learn more here.
Lavender Haze – A book you will always love and defend
Bree: It absolutely has to be The Folk of the Air series** by Holly Black! I am just such a diehard fan of this stabby, magical, bitey world. It even unseated my long time favorite series (PJO) series, which was in that slot since…2009. **Yes, I picked a series. Shhh.
Maroon – A spicy book
Bree: Has to be Mistakes Were Made by Meryl Wilsner! If the author promotes the book on social media with the tagline “8.5 sex scenes,” it’s a spicy book. Read my review here.
Tree: Look we all have different definitions of the word spicy and what a spicy novel is to us! But, In a Jam by Kate Canterbary was pretty hot. I posted a review on bookstagram if you’re curious on my thoughts.
Anti-Hero – Unreliable Narrator
Bree: Well, I was going to mention a certain author Tree names below, but instead I will go with One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus because it had me at the edge of the seat & fully invested.
Tree: I really don’t like this trope and honestly the only book I’ve read this with trope recently is The It Girl by Ruth Ware.
Snow of the Beach – An unexpected surprise
Bree: I am not usually one for nonfiction, especially memoirs, but I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jennette McCurdy gripped me to my core and I found myself connecting with her voice way too much.
Tree: I found out about Unfollow Me thanks to The Stacks, a book podcast, when they had the author on the show and I am so glad I picked it up. This book made me think and it has stuck with me all year.
You’re on your own kid – A character that really needs a hug
Bree: Oof has to be Jimmy from I Was Born for This by Alice Oseman! Honestly one of my favorite reads of the year, and such an insight to fandom culture and drawbacks of having a globally-recognized name.
Tree: I feel like every book I read has a character who needs a hug, but Mika Moon from The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches perhaps needs one most of all!
Midnight Rain – Star-crossed Lovers
Bree: I originally answered with Julian and Emma from The Dark Artifices (for obvious reasons), but upon reflection I’ve decided to change it to Sunshine and Levi from A Bad Day for Sunshine. Solely for the fact that he is the grumpiest grouch, reforming his criminal family, and she is the bubbly, freshly-minted town sheriff, literally named SUNSHINE. Anyways.
Tree: I can’t include my PERFECT PAIRING because the title is a Harper Collins book (literally so perfect that a quote from the book made me set down the book and go MIDNIGHT RAIN??) so I had to put more effort into this question. But, anyways. I’m going to say Nora and Will from Love at First (review) because they are sort of fated, but start off on the wrong foot and the book has a lot of Romeo & Juliet references and they obviously are the most iconic star crossed lovers.
Question…? – Grumpy x Sunshine (or neurodivergent rep)
Bree: One of my all-time favorites is The Wall of Winnipeg and Me by Mariana Zapata! She is just too much of a slow-burn-writing queen for the grumpy x sunshine dynamic not to pay off extremely well in her hands.
Tree: I recently read Well Matched which features the grumpy/sunshine trope that I love so much.
Vigilante Shit – Favorite character out for revenge
Bree: My 1st pick was from a HC title, so I went with Kaz from Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. He is just the grimiest revenge goblin to ever exist! He absolutely lives to to humble those who he believes to have wronged him.
Tree: I am copying Bree because my choice is another Harper Collins book. But, I do love Kaz so much.
Bejeweled – Strong Character Development
Bree: Harley Quinn in the Eat. Bang! Kill. Tour comics by Tee Franklin has the best arc I’ve seen for her!! She has actually character development!!! She is not a sex-object for the male gaze! She is incredibly gay! YES!! For Poison Ivy, of course.
Tree: Leo from Married by Morning by Lisa Kleypas. Technically his character arc takes four books but wow what an arc from a personal consumed by grief to a romance hero! Lisa Kleypas developed his character so well throughout the series.
Labyrinth – Second Chance Romance
Bree: I’m not going to lie, I read People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry so fast I can’t remember a single thing about it, except that I LOVED it and gave it 5 stars. But I guess, it’s actually less second chance romance and more “last chance to fall in love.” Oops.
Tree: I haven’t read a ton of second chance that I actually enjoy, but Seven Days in June by Tia Williams was so good.
Karma – Favorite full circle moments or parallels
Bree: I am blanking so hard right now. I can’t, for the life of me, remember a single one, even though I know I have been like “haha nice, shit goes around” while reading so many times!
Tree: Do I love full circle moments in books? Yes. Do I remember them ever? No. But, Luck & Last Resorts by Sarah Grunder Ruiz does bring up the past in a way that I appreciated and I liked seeing the characters grow.
Sweet Nothing – Favorite fluffy/cozy read
Bree: ASDFGHJKL Check, Please! by Ngozi Ukazu IS MY NEWEST COMFORT READ!! Bitty is sunshine incarnate, and the Haus is a magical, pure, dude-space filled with PIE. I read both books for the first, and third, time this year!! Would absolutely insert myself into the pages if I could!
Mastermind – Perfect world building and storytelling
Tree: No lie, I don’t pay attention to world building (lol I am not a fantasy reader clearly!), but I’m going say The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater.
What’s your favorite track of the album??
xoxo, Bree & Tree