Social Queue by Kay Kerr: ARC Review

I was fortunate to receive an audiobook copy from the publisher and author through Netgalley in exchange for feedback and my honest review. These are my opinions, uninfluenced.

Social Queue by Kay Kerr is a young adult, contemporary novel releasing tomorrow! Zoe Kelly is finally done with High School, and she’s so over the bullying and autistic masking. With an internship at a media company, Zoe ends up writing an article on her non-existent dating life which ends up going viral. Turns out, Zoe had just been missing the signs. Now, with a list of contenders from her past, Zoe’s spun away in a ride full of confusing signals, old sparks and new articles.

This was such a heart warming and fun read. It definitely delivered what the synopsis sold.

I loved Zoe’s character and found it easy to root for her. I can quite easily get bored with monologues but I found Zoe’s thoughts pretty fun to follow. She was a refreshing and quirky character.

Zoe’s relationships with the people around her (beyond romance) was a delight to read. I loved getting to know her sister. I didn’t enjoy the romance as much as I had expected. It’s not to say, I didn’t like it, I just wasn’t that invested in. However, that didn’t diminish my enjoyment for the story, I still cared a lot about where Zoe’s story went.

I was really happy with how the social anxiety portion of this story was handled. It felt honest and authentic. Personally, this was such an insightful read. I haven’t read a young adult book with autism rep (mc) before, so I’m glad we’re getting more neurodiversity.

I really liked the writing style. It was easy to read and enjoy. There was a great balance of dialogue and monologue. There were some moments that tugged at my heart strings and did make me emotional. They were probably some of my favourites.

If you’re looking for a refreshing coming of age story that tugs at the heart, I highly recommend this one.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Raven and the Dove by Kaitlyn Davis: A Book Review

The Raven and the Dove is a young adult, fantasy retelling of Tristan and Isolde. It’s been pitched as the perfect novel for the fans of Sarah J. Maas, Leigh Bardugo and Sabaa Tahir. As a big fan of all three, I whole-heartedly agree.

As the avian kingdoms in the sky (what a concept) prepare for the courtship trials, Princess Lyana Aethionus is ready for her last adventure. She doesn’t expect to save a raven prince from a dragon. Rafe, is the bastard son of the late Raven King, and he would do anything for his half-brother/prince. Including, posing as him in the courtship trials. Unknown to the world above, a war brews in the sea below, ready to threaten everything Lyana and Rafe know and love.

I have to say, I only picked this up because of how gorgeous the cover is. It gave me major Rhysand and Feyre vibes from A Court of Mist and Fury. I had no idea I would end up enjoying this as much as I did.

Princess Lyana was a great protagonist – she was fierce, determined and mischievous. She was so much fun to read about as she flew away on her adventures – albeit some reckless. At times she was a little immature, but that’s where the young adult bit really shines through. On the other hand, Rafe is the epitome of brooding and angst. He felt everything so intensely, that my heart ached for him. All the characters were so well developed, including Cassi and Xander. The story is told from multi point of views and surprisingly, I enjoyed reading this book from all of their perspectives. There was never a chapter that I wanted to skip.

I loved the pacing of this book, it was filled with action but it wasn’t too fast to cause whiplash and neither was it slow enough to bore me. I was super happy with when everything happened. Hence, why I flew through this book and stayed up to finish it. The sleep loss was totally worth it.

The world was really interesting, and not something I’ve seen in young adult before. Kingdoms in the sky were such a lovely idea and it was executed really well. I’m really excited to explore more of this world. Hopefully we get to see more of the other kingdoms in the upcoming books.

I loved the angst and pining between Rafe and Lyana, it was exactly what I wanted to read. The only downside for me, was how quick it was. It felt very insta-lovely and slightly rushed. I would’ve enjoyed the pining and angst a little bit more, if it made sense to why it meant so much to them.

Overall, such a great read and I can’t believe more people aren’t talking about this book. You need to add it to your TBR asap!

Six Crimson Cranes by Elizabeth Lim: A Book Review

In Six Crimson Cranes by Elizabeth Lim we join Shiori, the princess of Kiata. In this YA fantasy, Shiori’s biggest problem seems to be avoiding her betrothed, until her step-mother curses her and turns her brother into cranes. Without money and her voice, Shiori has to not only survive without the perks of her title but also find a way to save her brothers and free them from the curse.

The fairy retelling was an excellent concept that was executed really well. I fell in love with the culture, the tales and the song. Lim had created a wonderful world that I was able to be dive into.

The characters were so interesting, especially Shiori, Seryu, Raikama and Takkan. Speaking of Takkan, he is such a cutie! I loved these characters and felt like there were so many dimensions and layers to them. My only issue with the characters were probably her brothers, I couldn’t tell them apart except maybe two? They all seemed the same and I hope we get to know them a bit more in the upcoming books.

I loved the romance in the book, it wasn’t overwhelming or in your face. Subtle, and slowly burning in the background.

There were some bits I found to be a little predictable and other bits that caught me off guard. I don’t want to say too much and spoil it, but I love the direction this book went in.

I haven’t quite made up my mind on the pacing of this book. It was fast paced and kept me hooked but there were some bits that gave me whiplash and felt rushed. This felt jarring and would bring me out of the book, and it would take another few chapters to get back into it.

I really enjoyed this book, so much so that I stayed up to read more of it. And I’ll be eagerly waiting for the next book in the series.

I highly recommend this for anyone that loves an action-packed book.

Have you read this book? What did you think?