Have A Little Faith In Me by Sonia Hartl


When CeCe’s born-again ex-boyfriend dumps her after they have sex, she follows him to Jesus camp in order to win him back. Problem: She knows nothing about Jesus. But her best friend Paul does. He accompanies CeCe to camp, and the plan—God’s or CeCe’s—goes immediately awry when her ex shows up with a new girlfriend, a True Believer at that.

Scrambling to save face, CeCe ropes Paul into faking a relationship. But as deceptions stack up, she questions whether her ex is really the nice guy he seemed. And what about her strange new feelings for Paul—is this love, lust, or an illusion born of heartbreak? To figure it out, she’ll have to confront the reasons she chased her ex to camp in the first place, including the truth about the night she lost her virginity.

Have A Little Faith In Me by Sonia Hartl is a hilarious, heartbreaking, and heartwarming (yes, both) story about faith—or lack thereof—and friendship. CeCe is reckless, but so damn relatable and real. She's funny and you root for her even when you know you should be telling her to stop what she's doing. Paul, her best friend, is so damn swoony and funny. The girls of Cabin 8 each deserve their own stories with how well they're fleshed out. This book is so important and so sensitive to all the topics it covers, like religion and consent, and I'm so excited for more books by Hartl. She is one to keep on your Reading Radars.

Have A Little Faith In Me by Sonia Hartl will be published September 3, 2019. Preorder here.

Here There Are Monsters by Amelinda Bérubé


The Blair Witch Project meets Imaginary Girls in this story of codependent sisterhood, the struggle to claim one’s own space, and the power of secrets

Sixteen-year-old Skye is done playing the knight in shining armor for her insufferable younger sister, Deirdre. Moving across the country seems like the perfect chance to start over.

In their isolated new neighborhood, Skye manages to fit in, but Deirdre withdraws from everyone, becoming fixated on the swampy woods behind their house and building monstrous sculptures out of sticks and bones.

Then Deirdre disappears.

And when something awful comes scratching at Skye's window in the middle of the night, claiming she's the only one who can save Deirdre, Skye knows she will stop at nothing to bring her sister home.

Here There Are Monsters by Amelinda Bérubé was everything I wanted and more. The dark, unsettling thriller gave my goosebumps goosebumps. The imagery was haunting, the premise was unique, and the execution was boundary-pushing. Out of all the contemporary fantasy releases I've read so far this year, Here There Are Monsters has become my favorite.

Content warnings: animal deaths, self-harm, graphic descriptions of innards

Preorder here.

Virtually Yours by Sarvenaz Tash


How bad can one little virtual lie be?

NYU freshman Mariam Vakilian hasn’t dated anyone in five months, not since her high school sweetheart Caleb broke up with her. So, when she decides to take advantage of an expiring coupon and try out a new virtual reality dating service, it’s sort of a big deal.

It’s an even bigger deal when it chooses as one of her three matches none other than Caleb himself. That has to be a sign, right?

Except that her other match, Jeremy, just happens to be her new best friend IRL.

Mariam’s heart is telling her one thing, but the app is telling her another. So, which should she trust? Is all fair in modern love? (Goodreads)

Virtually Yours by Sarvenaz Tash was more than I was expecting. From the summary, I expected a cute rom-com with recognizable tropes, but what I got was a deep exploration of coming of age. I loved the characters; they all felt real and whole and likable. I appreciated that there's no real antagonist because Mariam, the protagonist, is the one holding herself back, which meant there was no mean girl or mean love interest. The setting was one I wish to see in more YA: college. It didn't focus much on the classes, but instead on the free time Mariam had; it was still enjoyable because that's the majority of college time anyway, and where young adults turn into the people they'll most likely be for years to come. I almost always enjoy a good morally gray character whose thrust into awkward situations by her own making, so I loved that Mariam made the decision to go out with her ex to prove a point, even if it meant lying to him and things potentially crashing and burning. For the most part, Virtually Yours had the ending I expected, but it felt earned and right.

I give Virtually Yours by Sarvenaz Tash, out June 4, 2019, 5 out of 5 stars. (Preorder)