Historical Fiction, Kylie Scott, & More


  • Space Opera

    RECOMMENDED: Space Opera by Catherynne M. Valente is $1.99! A sequel is coming out in September! Carrie gave this one an A-:

     I loved the book and would gleefully quote it all day. It made me feel happy and bubbly. It celebrated art of all kinds, even (possibly especially) shitty art. It made me feel hopeful and it made me laugh, and I love the message with which it begins and ends.

    The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy meets Eurovision in an over-the-top science fiction spectacle from bestselling author Catherynne Valente has galaxies competing for glory in a universe-wide musical contest—where the stakes are as high as the fate of planet Earth.

    A century ago, the Sentience Wars tore the galaxy apart and nearly ended the entire concept of intelligent space-faring life. In the aftermath, a curious tradition was invented—something to cheer up everyone who was left and bring the shattered worlds together in the spirit of peace, unity, and understanding.

    Once every cycle, the civilizations gather for Galactivision—part gladiatorial contest, part beauty pageant, part concert extravaganza, and part continuation of the wars of the past. Instead of competing in orbital combat, the powerful species that survived face off in a competition of song, dance, or whatever can be physically performed in an intergalactic talent show. The stakes are high for this new game, and everyone is forced to compete.

    This year, though, humankind has discovered the enormous universe. And while they expected to discover a grand drama of diplomacy, gunships, wormholes, and stoic councils of aliens, they have instead found glitter, lipstick, and electric guitars. Mankind will not get to fight for its destiny—they must sing.

    A band of human musicians, dancers, and roadies have been chosen to represent Earth on the greatest stage in the galaxy. And the fate of their species lies in their ability to rock.

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  • The Last Days of Lilah Goodluck

    The Last Days of Lilah Goodluck by Kylie Scott

    The Last Days of Lilah Goodluck by Kyle Scott is $2.99! This came out in February and I can’t tell how much women’s fiction or perhaps magical realism is contains. If you’ve read it, sound off in the comments!

    “Be quiet and listen: He is cheating on you. The name of your soulmate is Alistair George Arthur Lennox. You will be passed over for the promotion. The winning numbers are 5-8-12-24-39-43. And I’m very sorry to tell you this, but you will die next Sunday.”

    When Lilah Goodluck saves the life of Good Witch Willow as they’re crossing a busy L.A. street, the last thing she expects is five unwanted predictions as a reward. Who gives someone the winning lotto numbers then tells them they’ve only got a week to live? And who believes in that nonsense anyway?

    But when the first three predictions come true within twenty-four hours, Lilah’s disbelief turns to mild panic. She’s further horrified when she nearly runs a car off the road that belongs to Alistair Lennox, who just happens to be the illegitimate son of the British king.

    While Alistair is intrigued by her preposterous story, Lilah is adamant about resisting the heat between her and the playboy prince. If she denies he’s her soulmate, then the last prediction can’t come true, right? As the days count down, they become maybe friends…and then maybe more. But between the relentless paparazzi and some disapproving royals, finding time for love isn’t easy, especially when her days may be numbered.

    Red White and Royal Blue meets The Last Holiday in this delightfully quirky novel from the New York Times bestselling author of End of Story, about a woman who unexpectedly finds “fall in love with a prince” at the top of her bucket list.

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  • The Other Princess

    The Other Princess by Denny Bryce

    The Other Princess by Denny S. Bryce is $1.99! This one was featured in a previous Book Beat post. We’ve also had Bryce’s debut Wild Women and the Blues on sale before.

    A stunning portrait of an African princess raised in Queen Victoria’s court and adapting to life in Victorian England—based on the real-life story of a recently rediscovered historical figure, Sarah Forbes Bonetta.

    With a brilliant mind and a fierce will to survive, Sarah Forbes Bonetta, a kidnapped African princess, is rescued from enslavement at seven years old and presented to Queen Victoria as a “gift.” To the Queen, the girl is an exotic trophy to be trotted out for the entertainment of the royal court and to showcase Victoria’s magnanimity. Sarah charms most of the people she meets, even those who would cast her aside. Her keen intelligence and her aptitude for languages and musical composition helps Sarah navigate the Victorian era as an outsider given insider privileges.

    But embedded in Sarah’s past is her destiny. Haunted by visions of destruction and decapitations, she desperately seeks a place, a home she will never run from, never fear, a refuge from nightmares and memories of death.

    From West Africa to Windsor Castle to Sierra Leone, to St. James’s Palace, and the Lagos Colony, Sarah juggles the power and pitfalls of a royal upbringing as she battles racism and systematic oppression on her way to living a life worthy of a Yoruba princess.

    Based on the real life of Queen Victoria’s Black goddaughter, Sarah Forbes Bonetta’s story is a sweeping saga of an African princess in Victorian England and West Africa, as she searches for a home, family, love, and identity.

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  • Remarkably Bright Creatures

    Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt

    Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt is $2.99! If you want a tender, but also still an emotional wallop of a book, I cannot recommend this one more. It’s very good.

    For fans of A Man Called Ove, a charming, witty and compulsively readable exploration of friendship, reckoning, and hope, tracing a widow’s unlikely connection with a giant Pacific octopus.

    After Tova Sullivan’s husband died, she began working the night shift at the Sowell Bay Aquarium, mopping floors and tidying up. Keeping busy has always helped her cope, which she’s been doing since her eighteen-year-old son, Erik, mysteriously vanished on a boat in Puget Sound over thirty years ago.

    Tova becomes acquainted with curmudgeonly Marcellus, a giant Pacific octopus living at the aquarium. Marcellus knows more than anyone can imagine but wouldn’t dream of lifting one of his eight arms for his human captors–until he forms a remarkable friendship with Tova.

    Ever the detective, Marcellus deduces what happened the night Tova’s son disappeared. And now Marcellus must use every trick his old invertebrate body can muster to unearth the truth for her before it’s too late.

    Shelby Van Pelt’s debut novel is a gentle reminder that sometimes taking a hard look at the past can help uncover a future that once felt impossible.

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