December 13, 2020

Slippers and Thieves (Fairy Tales of the Magicorum #4) by Christina Bauer ~ Book Review

Title: Slippers and Thieves - New & Lengthened 2020 Edition

Series: Fairy Tales of the Magicorum #4

Author: Christina Bauer 

Publisher: Monster House Books 

Publication Date: November 26, 2019

Source: Copy provided by publisher via NetGalley for review

Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Chapters


Years ago, Elle ― never call her Cinderella ― escaped her evil step family in order to build a new life for herself in Manhattan. Today, Elle’s awful past is a distant memory. In fact, Elle even attends West Lake Prep, an exclusive high school where regular humans mix with members of the Magicorum, such as fairies, shifters and witches. Although she still must live in hiding from her evil step family, Elle always has found ways to get whatever her heart desires.

That is, until Alec Le Charme. Sure, Alec is the heir to the Le Charme dynasty of high-end jewelers, but he's also kind, charismatic, and has a knee-melting smile.

Long story short, Elle has fallen for Alec, hard. Unfortunately, thanks to Elle’s evil step family, the Le Charme heir is absolutely off limits. In fact, if Elle and Alec so much as kiss, it could start a magical chain reaction that would end in powerful factions of witches and wizards going to war. As a result, Elle and Alec vow to stay friends, no matter what. Then West Lake Prep holds a masquerade ball. Identities get mixed up and forbidden kisses are finally shared.

Time for the Magicorum to go to war, and for Elle to confront her hidden past in ways she never thought possible.

2020 edition includes typo fixes and a new appendix of extras.

My Rating: 4 / 5 stars 

A retelling of the Cinderella fairy tale, Slippers and Thieves pulls you into a world with magic, romance and action with some secrets and betrayal added to the mix. The Queen of Hearts and Cheshire cat even make an appearance! 

The story alternates between Elle's and Alec's narration, which I liked because it gave me a glimpse into how both of them think and feel. Elle is running from a tragic and painful past while Alec is navigating a problematic relationship with his parents as the heir to their high-end jewelry empire. The two happen to meet one day and fall in love. The problem is their love could spark a war. 

I read half the book in one sitting the first time I picked it up! I loved the world Bauer has built with three races of magical beings--fairies, shifters, and witches/wizards--coexisting in a delicate balance. You get the feeling it wouldn't take much to upset that balance. 

I loved the world building and the different kinds of magic the characters possessed and how they could use it. It was difficult when I had to stop reading for the night. I just HAD to know what new problem Elle and Alec would be facing next. It was really interesting to see how tangled the web was woven between Elle's and Alec's families with the purpose of keeping the two apart, and just when I thought it couldn't get more complicated, it did in the best way possible. 

This is the second book I've read in this series. I read the first book, Wolves and Roses, which is a retelling of the Sleeping Beauty fairy tale. There's enough info that allow you to read these books in any order. I now want to go back and read books 2 and 3! I definitely recommend this book and this series. 

You can read my review of Wolves and Roses here

January 9, 2020

You Too? 25 Voices Share Their #MeToo Stories Edited by Janet Gurtler Blog Tour: #Review & #Giveaway

Check out my stop on the blog tour for You Too? organized by YA Bound Tours. 

Title: You Too?  
by Various Authors 
Edited by Janet Gurtler 
Young Adult Non-fiction
Publisher: Inkyard Press
Publishing date: January 7, 2020


A timely and heartfelt collection of essays inspired by the #MeToo movement, edited by acclaimed young adult and middle-grade author Janet Gurtler. Featuring Beth Revis, Mackenzi Lee, Ellen Hopkins, Saundra Mitchell, Jennifer Brown, Cheryl Rainfield and many more. 

When #MeToo went viral, Janet Gurtler was among the millions of people who began to reflect on her past experiences. Things she had reluctantly accepted - male classmates groping her at recess, harassment at work - came back to her in startling clarity. She needed teens to know what she had not: that no young person should be subject to sexual assault, or made to feel unsafe, less than or degraded. 

You Too? was born out of that need. By turns thoughtful and explosive, these personal stories encompass a wide range of experiences and will resonate with every reader who has wondered, "Why is this happening to me?" or secretly felt that their own mistreatment or abuse is somehow their fault - and it's not. Candid and empowering, You Too? is written for teens, but also an essential resource for the adults in their lives - an urgent, compassionate call to listen and create change. 

Reading You Too? was as intense as I'd thought it would be. The essays brought up a lot of situations that have happened to me over the years - some that I had forgotten about, others that had happened so long ago the memory is foggy. I thought about experiences other women have told me. I imagined how I would write about my experiences. 

What I found really surprising was that some of the authors in the book felt that what happened to them wasn't as bad as what's happened to other women. I hope they know now that isn't the case at all. We as women try minimizing these things for a variety of reasons - we don't think anyone will believe us, we feel shame and guilt, we wonder if what went on was really happening or if we imagined it all. 

This is definitely a painful read, I mean the writing is wonderful but the subject matter is hard to read. My heart ached for the young girls these authors used to be.  My heart aches for them now. 

There was one essay I didn't think belonged in this collection and that was the one written by a cis male who had a difficult time coming out. It didn't belong because he wrote about how he joined guys in degrading women before he accepted that he was gay, which seemed like the antithesis to what this book is about. What ended up happening to him was not okay, but his participation in treating women like objects or speaking about them in a derogatory way should not have been expressed here.  

If you decide to read You Too?, you must be warned that everything that could happen to a woman is discussed here. It's difficult to read but also very much important that these situations women have faced are discussed. It's heavy subject matter that can be challenging to read but worthwhile if anything is going to change. 

Rating: 4 / 5

About the Editor 

Janet Gurtler's young adult books have been chosen for the JUNIOR LIBRARY GUILD SELECTION and as BEST BOOKS FOR TEENS from the Canadian Children's Book Center. Janet lives in Alberta, Canada with her husband, son, a chubby black Chihuahua named Bruce and a Golden Retriever named Betty White. 

Click here to visit the other stops on the tour!

We are giving away two copies of YOU TOO, signed by each author.  Entries are automatically entered with a donation to RAINN on our YOUTOO Fundraising Page. 

Blog Tour organized by YA Bound Book Tours