5 New YA Books To Read

5 New YA Books To Read

New books are the best books!

There have been a lot of books I've been eyeing over the summer, but I have yet to pick them up. I might have a book buying problem, but it's under control (for now). That being said, there have been a few releases that I might buy, book-buying-ban or not!

1. Our Dark Duet by Victoria Schwab

While I haven't read the first book in this duology, "This Savage Song", seeing the second book makes me want to buy them both! The story follows a reality in which humans face monsters, but a human and monster pair meet and end up stuck together in facing an even greater evil. I have a weak spot for monsters in general, so I feel like this series could be a quick favorite of mine.

2. The Love Interest by Cale Dietrich

This story is about two secret agents, or "love interests", that are tasked with getting a chosen girl to fall in love with them. One is a stereotypical good guy, while another is the stereotypical bad boy. Whoever doesn't get the girl dies. Yet the agents end up with feelings that distract them from their mission. I've been excited to see where this story is going for a while!

3. The Suffering Tree by Elle Cosimano

At first, I wasn't too interested in a story about a girl moving into a small town and being disliked for inheriting land there by a family called the Slaughters. Then I read the synopsis further, and I discovered there was a guy that suddenly claws his way out from the grave with a grudge against the Slaughters. This story promises some dark secrets and is right up my alley.

4. How Dare the Sun Rise: Memoirs of a War Child by Sandra Uwiringiyimana and Abigail Pesta

Usually, I don't read a lot of nonfiction, but this memoir following Sandra Uwiringiyimana caught my attention. It follows Sandra from the Democratic Republic of the Congo; she tells her story of how she survived a massacre, immigrated to America, and overcame all the trauma she went through with the arts and activism. The title of this memoir alone makes me interested in what Sandra went through.

Jason Zhou survives in a divided society where the elite use their wealth to buy longer lives. The rich wear special suits, protecting them from the pollution and viruses that plague the city, while those without suffer illness and early deaths. Frustrated by his city’s corruption and still grieving the loss of his mother who died as a result of it, Zhou is determined to change things, no matter the cost.

5. Want by Cindy Pon

The moment I saw the cover and synopsis for Want, I've been wanting it ever since! It's been a while since I've followed a book from its pre-debut stages, but Want is an exception. Want is a scifi set in a dystopian Taipei following Jason Zhou. He lives in a society where the rich are protected from the polluted air and viruses plaguing the city, while those who can't afford it have no choice but to suffer and die. Zhou wants to changes things, starting with the corrupt Jin Corporation. Want is definitely the first book I'm going to buy from this list, and I already know I'm going to love it.

Cover Image Credit: Simon & Schuster

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To the guy that shot my brother...


To the guy that shot my brother,

On January 9, 2019 my families entire life changed with one phone call. The phone call that my little brother had been shot in the face, no other details. We didn't need any other details. The woman on the phone who called us in full panic told us where he was so we went, as soon as possible. I don't think it helped that not even 10 min prior I talked to Zach on the phone.. kind of irritated with him, and the ONE TIME I didn't say 'I love you' as we hung up. Could've been the last time we ever spoke.. I remember pulling up to the hospital thinking 'this can't be real' 'it's not our Zach' 'this is just a dream Sarah, WAKE UP' I'd close my eyes really tight just to open them, I was still in the hospital emergency parking lot. I could still hear the ambulance sirens coming. It was all real.

The day our life's changed was definitely a test of faith. A test of how strong we were, as a family. I sat in that waiting room ready to see the damage that has been done to my sweet baby brother. Because at that point we had no idea how lucky he got. That glimpse of seeing Zach will haunt me forever. How helpless I felt in that exact moment frequently wakes me up from these horrific dreams I've been having ever since that day. That is a moment burned into my me and families brain forever.

You always hear about these things in the movies or on the news, a house being shot up, someone shooting another innocent person, not to care if they died on your watch. But we found ourselves on the news.. We have been confined to the hospital since that day. Running on barely any sleep, taking shifts of sleep so we don't make ourselves sick taking care of Zach. Watching him suffer. Undergoing surgeries, to repair the damage you did.

Before I proceed let me tell you a little something about the man you shot.

Zachary Keith Wright. A blonde hair blue eyed boy. Who could potentially be the most annoying human on the planet (possibly coming from his sister). A man who loves his God first, loves his family second. Perfect by no means, but almost perfect to me. A 19 year old who was to graduate high school this month. After graduation he was prepping to leave for Marine boot camp in the summer.. being in the military has been Zach's dream since he could talk. Literally. Running around, playing war with underwear on our heads, and finger guns. Some would say we looked like natural born assassins.. growing up he has been a country boy. Let me tell ya country to the core. He loves this country like he loves his family. He believes in helping people, taking charge in what's right, and never leaving a brother behind. He's lived by that his whole life. Until now....

The day you shot him. The day not only did you change my brothers life, you changed his families life too. The day you almost ripped my brother out of this world... for what? A misunderstanding? Because you've let something take ahold of your life that you can't let go you're willing to kill someone innocent over? Luckily for him, his guardian angels were protecting him in your time of cowardice. There were 3 times that day he should've died, the time you shot him, the time you tried to shoot him again as he stared you directly in the face, (even tho he couldn't talk I know you could read his eyes, and he still intimidated you. That's why you tried to pull the trigger again) and the time he was running out of the house. But he lived. A man who was shot in the face, didn't lay there helpless, didn't scream in agony. That MAN walked to the neighbors to get help. Why? Because he's a MAN, and because he's on this earth for a reason.

It's gonna sound a little strange not only to you, but the audience who is reading this. I must say thank you. Even in this situation, this was the best outcome we could get. He gets to live. He will make a full recovery. He will graduate. And he will go off into the Marines. You united my family together. Closer than ever. Thank you. You tested our faith and brought us closer to our God. Thank you. Because of your moment of weakness, you showed us what prayer could do. Heal anything. Thank you. This was a bump in the road, and a helluva way to kick off our year of 2019. But here we are.. all laying in the hospital. I'm looking around as mom is sleeping in her recliner chair exhasted but still here, Zach his awake playing his xbox all hooked up to machines, fighting to heal and get better. And of course I'm writing this letter to you.

See you in trial,

From the girl whose brother you shot.

'Fight the good fight' - 1 Tim 6:12 🤟🏼💙

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