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HEAVENBREAKER

A highly palatable fusion of SF elements.

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  • New York Times Bestseller

The first installment of Wolf’s SF series chronicles a young woman’s quest to avenge the murder of her mother and destroy all of those involved in her death.

Set in the distant future (3442) on a space station orbiting a gas giant, the story revolves around Synali von Hauteclare, a young woman living in the poorest section of the station. The product of an ill-advised tryst between the head of a noble house and a lowly commoner, Synali saw her life descend into tragedy when her beloved mother was killed by assassins sent by her father. Now, fresh from murdering her father with her own hands, the vengeance-obsessed Synali sets out to destroy the entire House Hauteclare. When she meets a former prince named Dravik who has similar retributive motivations of his own, the two conspire to take down the political hierarchy by competing in what is basically a jousting competition between houses. Instead of horses, the competitors drive massive “steeds”—military machines left over from a distant war—through space. These steeds are as “tall as buildings,” powered by strange technology, and they inevitably destroy their riders if they compete for too long. Synali doesn’t care about the dangers involved—she, in fact, wants to die, but not before delivering karmic justice to everyone involved in her mother’s death. While the SF elements (including intricate worldbuilding and mind-blowing revelations regarding the aliens that humankind defeated in that distant war) are brilliantly done, it’s the insightful characterization and emotional vulnerability of Synali that power this story. Her pain, incendiary anger, self-doubt, and ultimate courage will resonate with more than a few readers. “Where does a twisted girl like me fit in the universe? Everyone else is full, whole. No one wants the darkness—they want the stars.” Synali could be the next Katniss Everdeen—the potential is certainly there.  

A highly palatable fusion of SF elements.

Pub Date: May 21, 2024

ISBN: 9781649375704

Page Count: 448

Publisher: Entangled: Red Tower Books

Review Posted Online: April 12, 2024

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2024

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JUST FOR THE SUMMER

A wallowing, emotionally wrenching family drama that leaves little time for romance.

Two people with bad luck in relationships find each other through a popular Reddit thread.

Emma Grant and her best friend, Maddy, are travel nurses, working at hospitals for three-month stints while they see the country. Just a few weeks before they’re set to move to Hawaii, Emma reads a popular “Am I the Asshole” Reddit thread from a Minnesota man who thinks he’s cursed—women he dates find their soulmates after breaking up with him, and the latest one found true love with his best friend! Emma has had a similar experience, which inspires her to DM the man and commiserate. She’s delighted by her witty, lively interactions with software engineer Justin Dahl, and is intrigued when he suggests that if they date each other, maybe they’ll each find their soulmate afterward. Emma upends the Hawaii plan and convinces Maddy to move to Minneapolis for the summer so she can meet Justin in person. The overly complex setup brings Emma and Justin together and the two hit it off, with Justin immediately falling head over heels for Emma. Jimenez then pivots to creating romantic roadblocks and melodramatic subplots centering on each character’s family of origin. Justin’s mother is about to serve six years in prison for embezzlement, which means Justin must move back home to care for his three much younger siblings. Emma was traumatized by her own mother for much of her childhood, left to fend for herself and eventually abandoned in the foster system. When her mother shows up in Minnesota, Emma must face her traumatic childhood and admit that she has prioritized her mother’s well-being over her own. There is little time devoted to Emma’s painful efforts to heal herself enough to accept Justin’s love, which leaves the novel feeling unsatisfying.

A wallowing, emotionally wrenching family drama that leaves little time for romance.

Pub Date: April 2, 2024

ISBN: 9781538704431

Page Count: 432

Publisher: Forever

Review Posted Online: Feb. 3, 2024

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2024

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FUNNY STORY

Henry fans, rejoice: This is her best yet.

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A recently dumped librarian finds herself fake dating her polar opposite.

When Daphne Vincent’s fiance, Peter, dumps her, she’s shocked—but the worst part is that he’s leaving her for his gorgeous best friend, Petra, the woman he’d always told Daphne not to worry about. Now Daphne has to move out of Peter’s home and restart her life in the small Michigan town where she’d moved to be with him. Salvation comes in the form of Miles Nowak, Petra’s ex—he has a tiny spare room in his apartment, and he understands what it’s like to wallow in heartbreak. Daphne feels lucky to have her dream job as a children’s librarian, but other than that, she feels adrift and friendless in Waning Bay—and then she and Miles get invitations to Peter and Petra’s wedding. In a momentary lapse of judgment, Daphne not only says she’ll attend the wedding, but tells Peter she’s dating Miles. It would be the perfect way to show Peter and Petra that they’ve moved on…if only it were true. In the grand tradition of fake-dating romances, Daphne and Miles pretend to be in love, getting to know each other while having various adventures and misadventures. Daphne quickly learns that although she’d dismissed Miles as a pothead with a lack of direction, he’s actually a good time—and a loyal friend. But Daphne knows she needs to get out of Waning Bay, so this fake relationship can’t lead anywhere…can it? Reliable bestseller Henry has written another surefire hit that manages to be dramatic, sexy, and fun. Miles and Daphne have chemistry that leaps off the page, and their will-they-or-won’t-they energy propels the story to its satisfying conclusion. Daphne is an immensely likable character, one whose past realistically informs her current relationships. The world of Waning Bay is charmingly quirky, and Daphne’s co-workers at the library are endearing. As always, Henry’s biggest strength is the sharp, often hilarious dialogue that makes the story a joy to read.

Henry fans, rejoice: This is her best yet.

Pub Date: April 23, 2024

ISBN: 9780593441282

Page Count: 400

Publisher: Berkley

Review Posted Online: Feb. 17, 2024

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2024

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