In My Mailbox #30

In My Mailbox is brought to you be Kristi at The Story Siren and is where I share the books I received during the week.

Struts & Frets by Jon Skovron

Told in a voice that’s honest, urgent, and hilarious, Struts & Frets will resonate not only with teenage musicians but with anyone who ever sat up all night listening to a favorite album, wondering if they’d ever find their place in the world.

Music is in Sammy’s blood. His grandfather was a jazz musician, and Sammy’s indie rock band could be huge one day—if they don’t self-destruct first. Winning the upcoming Battle of the Bands would justify all the band’s compromises and reassure Sammy that his life’s dream could become a reality. But practices are hard to schedule when Sammy’s grandfather is sick and getting worse, his mother is too busy to help either of them, and his best friend may want to be his girlfriend.

When everything in Sammy’s life seems to be headed for major catastrophe, will his music be enough to keep him together?

I'm halfway through reading this one and finding it to be aimed more at middle-grade boys who are interested in starting up a band. Wouldn't recommend at this point but I am still keen to finish it off.

This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen

"I had no illusions about love... It came, it went, it left casualties or it didn't. People weren't meant to be together forever, regardless of what the songs say." Remy doesn't believe in love. And why should she? Her romance novelist mother is working on her fifth marriage, and her father, a '70s hippie singer, left her with only a one-hit wonder song to remember him by. Every time Remy hears "This Lullaby," it feels like "a bruise that never quite healed right." "Wherever you may go / I will let you down / But this lullaby plays on..." Never without a boyfriend, Remy is a compulsive dater, but before a guy can go all "Ken" on her (as in "ultra boyfriend behavior") she cuts him off, without ever getting close or getting hurt. That's why she's stunned when klutzy, quirky, alterna-band boy Dexter inserts himself into her life and refuses to leave. Remy's been accepted to Stanford, and she plans on having her usual summer fling before tying up the loose ends of her pre-college life and heading for the coast. Except Dexter's not following Remy's tried-and-true rules of break-up protocol. And for the first time, Remy's questioning whether or not she wants him to.

This Lullaby is the next challenge in my quest to complete every single Sarah Dessen book and to finally have read every single book that an author has released. I cannot wait for her new book, Cut and Run to come out next year and I'm even excited to read the pint-sized Infinity.

Viking marauders descend on a much-plundered island, hoping some mayhem will shake off the winter blahs. A man is booted out of his home after his wife discovers that the print of a bare foot on the inside of his windshield doesn’t match her own. Teenage cousins, drugged by summer, meet with a reckoning in the woods. A boy runs off to the carnival after his stepfather bites him in a brawl. 

In the stories of Wells Tower, families fall apart and messily try to reassemble themselves. His version of America is touched with the seamy splendor of the dropout, the misfit: failed inventors, boozy dreamers, hapless fathers, wayward sons. Combining electric prose with savage wit, Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned is a major debut, announcing a voice we have not heard before.

Short story fiction is not my usual choice of reading but something about this book caught my eye, I think it is a combination of the title and cover. I'll let you know how it goes.

Kiss and Break Up by Kate Kingsley

Half term may be over but the chaos has just begun. Mr Logan has run off and eloped with Miss Sharkreve leaving the Lower Sixth with a new housemistress - the tyrannical, catty Mrs Dicks. And with the rules getting tighter at St Cecilia's the students are getting way more creative in finding ways to break them - especially as they're all feeling a bit frisky. 

Tally, broken hearted and on the rebound, sets her sights on safe bet Rando, while Alice and Tristan decide to take their relationship to the next level. Things between Dylan and Jasper are seriously heating up - could she finally have found a guy who won't disappoint her? 

As tensions reach an explosive high, a pool party at Rando's country estate should be just the thing to cool everyone down. Or will it push the temperature up a notch?

I'm really surprised at how little attention this series has garnered, it's caught my attention enough that I have all three books in my possession but it has such low ratings on GoodReads that they are basically sitting at the bottom of my reading stack. Keep an eye out for the sparkling binder if you're thinking of picking this one up.

The Fool's Girl by Celia Rees 

Young and beautiful Violetta may be of royal blood, but her kingdom is in shambles when she arrives in London on a mysterious mission. Her journey has been long and her adventures many, but it is not until she meets the playwright William Shakespeare that she gets to tell the entire story from beginning to end. Violetta and her comic companion, Feste, have come in search of an ancient holy relic that the evil Malvolio has stolen from their kingdom. But where will their remarkable quest—and their most unusual story—lead? In classic Celia Rees style, it is an engrossing journey, full of political intrigue, danger, and romance. 

This wholly original story is spun from Shakespeare's Twelfth Night, and includes both folly and suspense that would make the Bard proud.

Fool's Girl has a really pretty cover, I have no idea what folly is without looking it up so I'm sure this book will be a lesson well-learned. It comes out April 5th in Australia and July 20th for the US.

What have you read recently that deserves much more attention?

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