Pick up your next J-horror read with my list at Unbound Worlds

My first piece for Unbound Worlds is an installment in their So You Want to Read series:

Ghost stories have been part of Japanese literature since the Heian period, from 794 to 1185, and modern Japanese horror is more accessible for English-language readers than ever before. Focusing on psychological horror and frequently incorporating folk religion elements including Shinto-style exorcisms, supernatural phenomena, and yokai, J-Horror titles are hair-raising stories that stick with the reader long after the book has been closed.

You can read the full article here to find your Halloween read. (But don’t say I didn’t warn you: some of these titles are incredibly terrifying.)

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I interviewed one of my favorite authors and lived to tell the tale

I was a little concerned about it when I got on the interview call to guest host the Skiffy & Fanty interview with Ann Leckie for the release of Provenance. But it ended up totally fine.

Here’s the show description:

Space Opera, heritage, and alien ambassadors, oh my! Shaun is joined by guest host Feliza Casano of Girlsincapes.com to interview Ann Leckie about the stand-alone novel in her Radch universe, Provenance. Ann shares some of her Space Opera influences, talks about how her love of archeology led her to an exploration of the role museums play in the myth of heritage, the nature of identity, naming, language, and so very much more. Don’t miss this one everyone!

You can also travel back in time to read my GiC review. (I loved it.) You can also follow the podcast at @SkiffyandFanty on Twitter.

(Thanks to Jen & Shaun for having me as a guest host!)

Horimiya, Vol. 8 returns to the series’ lighthearted slice-of-life tone

I’m extremely happy with the newest volume of Horimiya:

Hori and Miyamura return to the forefront in Volume 8, and their interactions are absolutely adorable. After the past two volumes, this one is especially refreshing as it returning to a more typical slice-of-life storyline.

You can find my full review at Girls in Capes.

Drop what you’re doing and go buy Ann Leckie’s PROVENANCE

Maybe I’m being a bit dramatic. But I’m also not.

Provenance marks a return to the universe of Ann Leckie’s Imperial Radch trilogy, which began in 2013 with the award-winning Ancillary JusticeProvenance is similarly centered around a plot of intergalactic political intrigue, following a young woman who’s frankly too inexperienced to navigate the situation she’s put herself in.

As much as my headline’s a little dramatic, I’m not exaggerating when I say this standalone is one of the best SFF novels of the year, and I can’t wait to be able to share this with other readers. I also had the chance to interview Leckie for the Skiffy & Fanty Show as a guest host along with Shaun, who also enjoyed the book. (If you listen closely to the episode, you can hear us internally screaming in the background.)

Provenance is available today – but you can read my full review at Girls in Capes before buying, and don’t forget to follow Skiffy & Fanty on Twitter to wait for the episode to release.

I struggled with the most recent volume of Love at Fourteen

Love at Fourteen has been one of my favorite ongoing series to review, but Volume 6 was difficult for me:

An extremely uncomfortable aspect of Volume 6 is the continued emphasis on romances and crushes between middle school students and the adults in their lives, in particular between students and their teachers. Students having crushes on teachers — especially student teachers or young teachers — isn’t uncommon or particularly unnatural, but it’s another matter entirely to depict that teacher being romantically or sexually attracted to the middle school student.

You can read my full review at Girls in Capes.

One-week warning: August 2017 Girls in Capes Book Club

We’re one week out from our August book club discussion of The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi:

Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of Death and Destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father’s kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran’s queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar’s wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire…

But Akaran has its own secrets — thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most… including herself.

Can’t make it? You can still chat about the books in the comments section on Girls in Capes.

Everyone should read the new Miles Morales novel

I’ve been telling literally everyone who will listen to me about Jason Reynolds’ new Miles Morales novel, available now from Marvel Press:

At 16, Miles is concerned he’s destined to follow the same path as his father and his uncle, who both went in and out of jail as teens for petty crimes and more. His Spidey senses keep going haywire at the worst time: in the middle of history class, taught by a “subtly” racist teacher named Mr. Chamberlain who seems to have it out for Miles. And every mistake he makes at Brooklyn Visions Academy puts his scholarship — and his future — in peril.

Miles’ struggle in this story isn’t an exclusively superhuman one, and the fight against the Big Bad isn’t even one he truly needs superpowers to fight. (Although his superpowers definitely help. A lot.) His journey is an incredibly personal one: trying to figure out whether he deserves to be Spider-Man or if he’ll never be anything more than a criminal, which is how many of the school’s administrators treat him.

You can read my full review now at Girls in Capes.