Two Book Tuesday

43809328._SY475_Title: Trapeze
Author: Leigh Ansell
Genre: YA Contemporary
Publication Date: September 10th
Ratings: ♥♥♥

Goodreads Summary:

How do you trust the ground when all you’ve known is flight?

In this breathtaking debut, Leigh Ansell has created a compelling, heartbreaking, and truly engaging story about a young girl used to flying high only to be faced with living life with her two feet firmly on the ground . . .

Seventeen-year-old Corey Ryder can’t remember a time when she wasn’t gliding through the air of Cirque Mystique’s big top. As a trapeze artist in a traveling circus, Corey wakes up every day in a different place, buzzing for the moment she can suspend gravity during the night’s performance.

When the circus pulls into small-town Sherwood, California, everything seems normal—aside from meeting the exceptionally cute Luke Everett at a local diner. But that night, in the midst of the performance, tragedy strikes and flames overtake the tent. While Corey narrowly escapes, in the ashes of the circus pitch lies the only home she’s ever known.

Repeatedly thrown out of her comfort zone, Corey must learn how to push toward her future without forgetting her past, what it means to be a daughter to a mother she’s never known, and how to navigate the confusing magic of first love, even as she performs the high-wire act of being true to who you really are.

Corey “I’m not like most girls” Ryder moved in with her Aunt when she was a toddler and joined the circus. She grew up living in a trailer traveling across the country, spending a few weeks in each city. The circus was her family and she was on her way to becoming the star of the trapeze act, until tragedy strikes and she is forced to move in with the mother she hasn’t had any contact with since she left.

This wasn’t bad—I truly thought the general idea was really interesting—I just didn’t think it was well executed. The author ended most chapters, foreshadowing to what would come next, but it was so blatantly obvious and done so much that it got cheesy. I definitely wanted to see more with the circus, or even just more contact with the people from the circus. Corey kept talking about how important and special her circus family was to her, but she never talked to them the entire time she was away.

The author seemed to only care about the romance, leaving it to be the only thing really developed in the story.  Corey is living with her mother for the first time since she was two and it was just a waste of a storyline that I think could have been really compelling if it had any development. Luke was an okay love interest but for someone who was supposed to be the most popular kid in school, he hardly interacted with any one other than Corey. It just didn’t feel very authentic. 

ARC was provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

40111647Title: Who Put This Song On?
Author: Morgan Parker
Genre: YA Contemporary
Publication Date: September 24th 
Ratings: ♥♥♥

Goodreads Summary:

Trapped in sunny, stifling, small-town suburbia, seventeen-year-old Morgan knows why she’s in therapy. She can’t count the number of times she’s been the only non-white person at the sleepover, been teased for her “weird” outfits, and been told she’s not “really” black. Also, she’s spent most of her summer crying in bed. So there’s that, too.

Lately, it feels like the whole world is listening to the same terrible track on repeat—and it’s telling them how to feel, who to vote for, what to believe. Morgan wonders, when can she turn this song off and begin living for herself?

Life may be a never-ending hamster wheel of agony, but Morgan finds her crew of fellow outcasts, blasts music like there’s no tomorrow, discovers what being black means to her, and finally puts her mental health first. She decides that, no matter what, she will always be intense, ridiculous, passionate, and sometimes hilarious. After all, darkness doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Darkness is just real.

Oh my God, this book! I knew nothing about this book or this author before getting into this book and within 10 pages, I was hooked!!!

Who Put This Song On? is loosely based on author Morgan Parker’s real life as a black teen who struggles with finding her place in the world. Morgan wrestles with her mental health, her blackness—or lack thereof—in a predominately white neighborhood, and how to feel in her own skin and with her sometimes dark thoughts. She is constantly being made fun of for the things she wears and the music she listens to, especially by her extended family and the popular kids in school. Morgan would much rather spend time with the people that understand her, even when she is still trying to figure out who she is.

I think Parker’s views of depression and anxiety were so spot on. Morgan feels forced to come up with excuses and apologize for her actions for when everything gets to be too much or when she has one of her fits. She goes to therapy very reluctantly, but knows that its helping—especially when she starts to open up about her panic attacks with her best friends and realizes she’s not the only person in the world who feels like this. This solace in learning that you’re not alone in your feelings.

I hope this books gets into more peoples’ hands because it truly is a remarkable story about a girl lost in her feelings and identity, trying to understand the world around her. And it’s really funny and witty, with some sharp characters and incredible music.

ARC was provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.