I was thrilled when I first heard that E.J. Noyes was going to write another story which would give one of my all-time favourite lesfic couples, Sabine (Sab) and Rebecca (Bec), from the “Ask, Tell” and “Ask Me Again” books their well-deserved, fully celebrated happy ending! Plus, the book would be about Sab’s sister, Jana, who was featured as a secondary character in the previous two books.
Anyway, “If The Shoe Fits” was a brilliantly written story about self-discovery, sexual awakening, truth and reconciliation, and living one’s true self, ultimately. I love Noyes’ voice in her writing because it’s always filled with emotional depth that relates and resonates so the characters and situations she creates are realistic. At least for me. Obviously, the same happened with this story as Noyes took us on Jana’s journey of metamorphosis. Speaking of, this story was told in a first-person narrative, focussing solely on Jana’s journey. I must say, Noyes’ first-person narrative always sucks me in, I was fully invested in the MC from the start because of how she crafts the character’s entrance and scene.
Ok, I feel like I owe it to Michelle Larkin to write a little bit of something about my experience with this book seeing that I might’ve been too hasty in relegating it to the bottom pile of my TBR list before! But for some reason, I picked this book to read and it was nothing like I expected. At all!
First, it was funny throughout, with lovable MCs and secondary characters! Never read a shape-shifter MC to be this funny, fun, and adorably likeable all throughout the story! Usually there’d be a layer of darkness in the shape-shifter, but Aspen, who’s also the “Chosen One” of the shape-shifting community, only had light in her. I absolutely loved all the funny, flirty, cheeky, mischievous banters between Aspen and Tora (the awkward, aloof, ice queen doc). In fact I loved the natural chemistry that Aspen seemed to have with everyone, particularly, Tora, Skye and her “pops,” Oscar! Their interactions, when you read the book, were portrayed with such authenticity that I believed they were like family. That was certainly a surprise to me because I didn’t get that kinda chemistry or rapport in dialogues from Larkin’s previous book.
Well, if you know Natasha West‘s writing style, you know that you’ll have yourself another comedy to read about in her latest. This time, “200 Hours,” is a (very) light-hearted romcom, YA style (uni years). Rich girl/poor girl trope, coming out. It was fun to read how these two polar opposites get together whilst trying to complete their 200 hours of community service under the most horrid social worker’s so-called guidance! Julie. Yeh, or as I’d like to call her, Bodybag!!!! Heh, if you’d watched the prison drama, “Bad Girls,” (which churned out me all-time favourite on-screen lesbian couple, Helen & Nikki, mind!) you’ll know who Bodybag was!! So, Julie was essentially Sylvia “Bodybag” Hollamby reincarnate, what with all her sheer nastiness, that bigoted, vindictive, stupid ol’ cow!! Urgh! But that was the most fun part to read in this book!! OMG! The more the community serving lot (“criminals”) wound her up and took the piss, the funnier it was!
Check out this following excerpt (my favourite slapstick scene!) where Bodybag…I mean, Julie, was barking out her instructions at her tormented criminals to do something to fill the hours:
Thanks to one of my GR mates’ HIGHLY recommended read (cheers, F/F!), I finally had the chance to do so. Let’s just say I devoured it! I mean, in the beginning, it was just a normal read for me as I swiped each page like any other book, but something clicked. I noticed just how smooth the language was flowing, the rhythm of the interactions was like a melody playing every movement as the story development progressed throughout the book. It was so organically written and presented, I began to feel like I was on this same journey with Kris and Julianne, observing and witnessing everything they both were experiencing, internally and externally, along with the people around them. Diaz literally wrote a detailed chronicle of two people’s lives in whole. It was literally real-life in words. I have a feeling this story’s a deeply personal one for her. The authentic feel was made even more realistic with witty and humorous dialogues and situations! I could hear the NY dry sense of humour and its accent through Diaz’s incredibly personal conversational dialogues. The monologues were resonating. Needless to say, I was addicted to Julianne and Kris’ story, wanting to know what happened next! I couldn’t swipe and scroll the pages fast enough! Because of the realism that Diaz injected into this story and how she told it, everyone in both Kris and Julianne’s lives was depicted and portrayed with equal fervour, I loved all of them, even the antagonists, because in real life, we DO have these characters around us, don’t we?
First off, Erin Zak keeps churning out creative storylines that make for some compelling read! Her latest, “Beautiful Accidents,” was no exception. Two intriguing characters with professions that I’d never read about before along with a deaf secondary character playing a pivotal role in one of the MCs’ journey in a setting that was utterly original, not to mention, eye-opening for me. In other words, perfect ingredients for an original romance, imo, and I utterly enjoyed it!
Who is Stephanie Ahn? What is Harrietta Lee series about? Truth be told, I had no knowledge, whatsoever, about the existence of this author, let alone her series! That was until Lex‘s review of “Deadline,” Book 1 of Ahn’s Harrietta Lee series, showed up on my GR timeline recently! At first glance, the cover threw me a little bit because it looked like a manga book. Why? Because having been a fan of manga since I was a kid, I never thought I’d see the day where there would be manga in lesfic! Hence, my initial double-take! Then almost immediately, I was curious as to how this could be in lesbian fiction! See, when “Legend of Korra” finally gave us Korrasami, I finally dared to hope that manga would expand into lesbian fiction!
*Ha! I finally found a good reason to include Korrasami images on my blog! Fancy that! If it weren’t for the cover of this book and writing style, I prolly wouldn’t find any rhyme or reason to! So, cheers, Ms. Ahn!*
So far, though, I’m still a little “obsessed” with Korra and Asami so I haven’t actually actively looked for others in manga so I don’t know what the current situation is.
Oops, I digress!!!
Back to my point…. and I DO have one, mind! Wait…
OK, so back to Ahn’s “Deadline.” First and foremost, it’s NOT manga. Well…I’ll get back to this in a bit. Anyway, at Lex’s mention of a demon girl, Lilith, that was it. With my curiosity already spilling over because I kept wondering why the book cover was in manga art form, and now a demon girl in the mix?! I just HAD to read to find out more!
Lesley Davis has once again sucked me in with something that I’ve always been fascinated with and a believer in the “Nothing is what it seems. Nothing. Open your mind” way of life! With “Raging At The Stars,” I felt an immediate connection to it because…. The X-Files! It was like Davis wrote it especially for me! All the conspiracy theories, the mindset, circumstances that she described were as if she tapped into my mind, retrieved them and crafted into this truly captivating, engrossing and positively exciting tale! Or, that she and I just happen to share similar mentality where this subject matter’s concerned! Plus… “The X-Files!!!” I would be shocked if Davis isn’t an X-phile herself! She literally took the mythology of the phenomenally ground-breaking cult series, compiled them altogether and ran with it, putting her very own unique story and writing stamp on it! Even better? Infinitely, I’d say? LESBIANS!!!!! Lesbian romance in the midst of it but not so much that it’d distract from the massive plot! That’s the genius of her tale-spinning. As much as I was enamoured of the entire collection of conspiracy theories that were brilliantly deconstructed as the plot unfolded, Davis also soothed it with a lovely, charming romance and…let’s not forget, which I now know to expect from Davis…. The WIT! The HUMOUR! The HILARITY! In the dialogue between the protagonists and the other always-interesting secondary characters making the entire reading experience…FUNFUNFUN!!