One of our reading goals is working on our Netgalley feedback ratio. Eventually we want to get it to 80%. And to help motivate us we decided to do this new post every week. We pick three of our eARCs and based on the first line, paragraph, or page we decide which one we’ll read next. Let’s take a look at today’s picks for this week’s Netgalley Next!
Lying in the Deep – Diana Urban
A juicy mystery of jealousy, love, and betrayal set on a Semester at Sea-inspired cruise ship, with a diverse cast of delightfully suspicious characters who’ll leave you guessing with every jaw-dropping twist.
After being jilted by her ex-boyfriend and best friend, Jade couldn’t be more ready to embark on the adventure of a lifetime—11 countries in 4 months, all from the luxurious Campus on Board ship—and to wedge an entire globe between her and the people who broke her heart.
But when Jade discovers the backstabbing couple are also setting sail, her obsession with them grows and festers, leading to a shocking murder. And as their friends begin to drop like flies, Jade and her new crush must race to clear her name and find the killer they’re trapped at sea with….before anyone else winds up in body bags.
Perfect for readers of Natalie D. Richards, E. Lockhart, and Karen McManus!
“I didn’t realize there’d be this much blood.”
Diana Urban knows how to start a book! The only question will be is this the start of the shocking murders we see talked about in the synopsis or something else? I can’t imagine being stuck on a cruise ship when my friends start dropping like flies. Kind of makes me wonder if my dream of taking a cruise is a good idea, haha.
Take a Bow, Noah Mitchell – Tobias Madden
There Are No Cheat Codes for Showmance
Seventeen-year-old gaymer Noah Mitchell only has one friend left: the wonderful, funny, strictly online-only MagePants69. After years playing RPGs together, they know everything about each other, except anything that would give away their real life identities. And Noah is certain that if they could just meet in person, they would be soulmates. Noah would do anything to make this happen—including finally leaving his gaming chair to join a community theater show that he’s only mostly sure MagePants69 is performing in. Noah has never done anything like theater—he can’t sing, he can’t dance, and he’s never willingly watched a musical—but he’ll have to go all in to have a chance at love.
With Noah’s mum performing in the lead role, and former friends waiting in the wings to sabotage his reputation, his plan to make MagePants69 fall in love with him might be a little more difficult than originally anticipated.
And the longer Noah waits to come clean, the more tangled his web of lies becomes. By opening night, he will have to decide if telling the truth is worth closing the curtain on his one shot at true love.
“I’m in love with MagePants69.”
While this first line isn’t the most exciting one, this book has me very curious. I love books that have characters meeting online (I’ve met quite a few of my friends this way) and I love that the main character is a gamer. Take a Bow, Noah Mitchell sounds like a really cute book I won’t be able to put down.
The Last Tale of the Flower Bride – Roshani Chokshi
A sumptuous, gothic-infused story about a marriage that is unraveled by dark secrets, a friendship cursed to end in tragedy, and the danger of believing in fairy tales—the breathtaking adult debut from New York Times bestselling author Roshani Chokshi.
Once upon a time, a man who believed in fairy tales married a beautiful, mysterious woman named Indigo Maxwell-Casteñada. He was a scholar of myths. She was heiress to a fortune. They exchanged gifts and stories and believed they would live happily ever after—and in exchange for her love, Indigo extracted a promise: that her bridegroom would never pry into her past.
But when Indigo learns that her estranged aunt is dying and the couple is forced to return to her childhood home, the House of Dreams, the bridegroom will soon find himself unable to resist. For within the crumbling manor’s extravagant rooms and musty halls, there lurks the shadow of another girl: Azure, Indigo’s dearest childhood friend who suddenly disappeared. As the house slowly reveals his wife’s secrets, the bridegroom will be forced to choose between reality and fantasy, even if doing so threatens to destroy their marriage . . . or their lives.
Combining the lush, haunting atmosphere of Mexican Gothic with the dreamy enchantment of The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue, The Last Tale of the Flower Bride is a spellbinding and darkly romantic page-turner about love and lies, secrets and betrayal, and the stories we tell ourselves to survive.
“You warned me that knowing your secret would destroy us.”
Another line that has me very curious I have to say! Roshani Chokshi has an amazing writing style that is so beautiful and I think that will be the case yet again in this one. This is Roshani’s first adult book that sounds like it’ll be very dark, but also very magical. I’m excited!
This week I definitely chose three books that couldn’t be more different, haha. All three of them definitely caught my attention with their first lines. All of these are 2023 releases. It hasn’t been this hard to choose one in a couple of weeks. I think I’ll go with Take a Bow, Noah Mitchell. I’m in the mood for a contemporary. If you had to choose to start one of these books, which one would you choose first? Let me know in the comments! I’d love to hear from you.