March 04, 2021

World Book Day Celebration | Diverse Books for Kids & Teens

If I were a meme, I'd be this little guy.

I have quickly forgotten what it means to be organized and get things written up in preparation for the cool happenings of bookish events. When I got the notification reminder, I may have panicked a little.

If you've made it this far, welcome, thank you for following whatever hyperlink you clicked on. It means you're here and about to get three more stellar diverse reading recommendations to check out the next time you're adding books to your shopping cart.

A Blade so Black (The Nightmare-Verse #1) 

L.L. McKinney



The first time the Nightmares came, it nearly cost Alice her life. Now she's trained to battle monstrous creatures in the dark dream realm known as Wonderland with magic weapons and hardcore fighting skills. Yet even warriors have a curfew.

Life in real-world Atlanta isn't always so simple, as Alice juggles an overprotective mom, a high-maintenance best friend, and a slipping GPA. Keeping the Nightmares at bay is turning into a full-time job. But when Alice's handsome and mysterious mentor is poisoned, she has to find the antidote by venturing deeper into Wonderland than she's ever gone before. And she'll need to use everything she's learned in both worlds to keep from losing her head... literally.

Why You Should Read It?

I have been on a quest for an Alice in Wonderland retelling that spoke to me and incorporated all the storytelling elements that I have found I love at this point in my life. A Blade so Black is multifaceted with great depth that I haven't come across before; well-developed characters, high stakes, and a world that, and take this in the best way possible, I would never like to live in. Both the author and main character are black, and this book does lightly touches upon some elements of racism and police brutality.

   Other Words for Smoke 

   Sarah Maria Griffin



   The house at the end of the lane burned down, and Rita Frost and her       teenage ward, Bevan, were never seen again. The townpeople never           learned what happened. Only Mae and her brother Rossa know the truth; they spent two summers with Rita and Bevan, two of the strangest summers of their lives... Because nothing in that house was as it seemed: a cat who was more than a cat and a dark power called Sweet James that lurked behind the wallpaper, enthralling Bevan with whispers of neon magic and escape. And in the summer heat, Mae became equally as enthralled with Bevan. Desperately in the grips of first love, she'd give the other girl anything. A dangerous offer when all that Sweet James desired was a taste of new flesh...

Why You Should Read It?

I read this in one sitting, two years ago, and it still remains embedded in my heart. I debated what book I wanted to put down for LGBTQ+ representation, and funnily enough, the struggle was between two phenomenal Irish voices, and as much as I adored All the Bad Apples, it's the way Sarah Maria Griffin writes that first all-consuming crush, all in enriched lyrical writing that has never left me. 

If you're interested in hearing more, I wrote a review.

An Ember in the Ashes (An Ember in the Ashes #1)
Sabaa Tahir
Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death.
When Laia's grandparents are brutally murdered and her brother arrested for treason by the empire, the only people she has left to turn to are the rebels.
But in exchange for their help in saving her brother, they deman that Laia spy on the ruthless Commandant of Blackcliff, the Empire's greatest military academy. Should she fail it's more than her brother's freedom at risk... Laia's very life is at stake.
There, she meets Elias, the academy's finest soldier. But Elias want only to be free of the tyranny he's been trained to enforce. He and Laia will soon realize that their destinies are interwined - and that their choices will change the date of the Empire itself.

Why You Should Read It?

If you're looking for an action-packed YA high fantasy, then look no further. When this first came out it was quite hyped up as a standalone, that I feel like as it became a quartet, people don't hype up the series as much as they should. A fusion of Roman and Middle-Eastern inspired mythology, this world is one of the YA fantasies I would greatly like to re-enter and read more from, with well-developed characters that quickly stoke their way into my heart.

Looking for more recommendations on this fine World Book Day? Why not check out the previous post from Books With Ben, or onwards to Sifa Elizabeth Reads.

You can see today's schedule below, and special thanks to Charlotte, over at Wonderfully Bookish, for organizing us today!

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