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!
Out of Character – Jenna Miller
If you asked seventeen-year-old Cass Williams to describe herself, she’d happily tell you she’s fat, queer, and obsessed with the Tide Wars books. What she won’t tell you—or anyone in her life—is that she’s part of an online Tide Wars roleplay community. Sure, it’s nerdy as hell, but when she’s behind the screen writing scenes as Captain Aresha, she doesn’t have to think about her mother who walked out or how unexpectedly stressful it is dating resident cool girl Taylor Cooper.
But secretly retreating to her online life is starting to catch up with Cass. For one, no one in her real life knows her secret roleplay addiction is the reason her grades have taken a big hit. Also? Cass has started catching feelings for Rowan Davies, her internet bestie…and Taylor might be catching on.
As Cass’s lies continue to build, so does her anxiety. Roleplaying used to be the one place she could escape to, but this double life and offline-online love triangle have only made things worse. Cass must decide what to do—be honest and risk losing her safe space or keep it a secret and put everything else on the line.
“Mr. Tuttles would be the death of me.”
I don’t know who Mr. Tuttles is, but that’s definitely an interesting start to a story! Out of Character is a book I’ve been really curious about. Books where character have a fandom they love or an online community is something I love to read about.
Mysteries of Thorn Manor – Margaret Rogerson
In this sequel novella to Sorcery of Thorns, Elisabeth, Nathaniel, and Silas must unravel the magical trap keeping them inside Thorn Manor in time for their Midwinter Ball!
Elisabeth Scrivener is finally settling into her new life with sorcerer Nathaniel Thorn. Now that their demon companion Silas has returned, so has scrutiny from nosy reporters hungry for gossip about the city’s most powerful sorcerer and the librarian who stole his heart. But something strange is afoot at Thorn Manor: the estate’s wards, which are meant to keep their home safe, are acting up and forcibly trapping the Manor’s occupants inside. Surely it must be a coincidence that this happened just as Nathaniel and Elisabeth started getting closer to one another…
With no access to the outside world, Elisabeth, Nathaniel, and Silas – along with their new maid Mercy – will have to work together to discover the source of the magic behind the malfunctioning wards before they’re due to host the city’s Midwinter Ball. Not an easy task when the house is filled with unexpected secrets, and all Elisabeth can think about is kissing Nathaniel in peace. But when it becomes clear that the house, influenced by the magic of Nathaniel’s ancestors, requires a price for its obedience, Elisabeth and Nathaniel will have to lean on their connection like never before to set things right.
“I DIDN’T DO THIS!” Nathaniel insisted, leaning out the manor’s front door, gazing hopelessly at the vines thrashing up along the thorn hedge, the animated toparies prowling through the garden, and the threatening magical gale that howled around Thorn Manor, carrying past leaves and branches and loose cobblestones in a whirling cyclone. “I swear upon Baltasar’s unholy grave, I didn’t do a thing.”
Sorcery of Thorns was a book I loved and believe me, I was sad when I found out it was a standalone. I love that the author has given us a sequel novella. The first sentence is quite long, but definitely caught my attention. I definitely want to know what’s going on. Mysteries of Thorn Manor is under 200 pages, so it won’t take that long to read.
Seven Faceless Saints – M.K. Lobb
In the city of Ombrazia, saints and their disciples rule with terrifying and unjust power, playing favorites while the unfavored struggle to survive.
After her father’s murder at the hands of the Ombrazian military, Rossana Lacertosa is willing to do whatever it takes to dismantle the corrupt system—tapping into her powers as a disciple of Patience, joining the rebellion, and facing the boy who broke her heart. As the youngest captain in the history of Palazzo security, Damian Venturi is expected to be ruthless and strong, and to serve the saints with unquestioning devotion. But three years spent fighting in a never-ending war have left him with deeper scars than he wants to admit… and a fear of confronting the girl he left behind.
Now a murderer stalks Ombrazia’s citizens. As the body count climbs, the Palazzo is all too happy to look the other way—that is, until a disciple becomes the newest victim. With every lead turning into a dead end, Damian and Roz must team up to find the killer, even if it means digging up buried emotions. As they dive into the underbelly of Ombrazia, the pair will discover something more sinister—and far less holy. With darkness closing in and time running out, will they be able to save the city from an evil so powerful that it threatens to destroy everything in its path?
Discover what’s lurking in the shadows in this dark fantasy debut with a murder-mystery twist, perfect for fans of Leigh Bardugo and Kerri Maniscalco.
“It was just midnight when the paranoia set in.”
Seven Faceless Saints is a book I’ve been very curious about since I heard about it last year. A dark fantasy with a murder-mystery twist? Yes, please! The first sentence definitely caught my attention. Why is this character paranoid? This book sounds like something I’ll love!
All three of these have definitely caught my eye and the first lines are all interesting. I do have a blog tour for Mysteries of Thorn Manor this week, so the choice has been made for me! The other two are definitely high on my TBR though. Are any of these books on your TBR? What book would you want to read first? Let me know in the comments! I’d love to hear from you.