ARC Review – The Pants Project by Cat Clarke

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The Pants Project

Author: Cat Clarke

Publication: March 7th, 2017

Publisher: Sourcebooks Jabberwocky

Format: e-ARC, 272 pages

Genre: Middle Grade, Contemporary, Coming of Age, LGBTQ+

Read: March 2017

Cat ClarkeGoodreads

I received an e-ARC of this book from Sourcebooks Jabberwocky via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

Synopsis
My name is Liv (Not Olivia)… I’m not technically a girl.
I’m Transgender. Which is a bit like being a transformer. Only not quite as cool as cool because I probably won’t get to save the world one day.
A Transformer is a robot in disguise. Liv is a boy in disguise. It’s that simple. Liv knows he was always meant to be a boy, but with his new school’s terrible dress code, he can’t even wear pants. Only skirts.
Operation: Pants Project begins! The only way for Live to get what he wants is to go after it himself. But to Liv, this isn’t just a mission to change the policy- it’s a mission to change his life. And that’s a pretty big deal.

I am a cisgender, straight woman and I know very little about transgender issues. If I say anything in this review that can be seen as offensive to the transgender community, please let me know!

Also here’s a review by a multigender writer which I found on this list of reviews of trans/non-binary literature by trans/non-binary reviewers. If you know of any #ownvoices reviews of this book, let me know so I can share them here!

Critically

Plot – 4 out of 5 stars
This book was really entertaining and cute. There’s a lot of passion and several themes that I enjoyed reading about and that I think are important within a middle grade specially. This book talks about acceptance, honestly, family, friendship and sticking up for yourself. Overall, it was a really nice read, super fast and just generally feel good even with the integration of serious topics.

Writing Style – 3 out of 5 stars
The writing style was really fast paced and easy to read. I could’ve finished the book in one sitting if I had had the time to do so. The main character has a very distinct voice and personality which I liked but it also felt very disjointed and there were some weird metaphors. Some things were not explained in the best way in my opinion and kind of made me raise my eyebrows a bit.

Characters – 3 out of 5 stars
I liked the characters in this book, most of all the relationships between them and how they grew and developed as the book went on. Liv was pretty great. He was very determined and had a lot of tenacity which I appreciated. He was very adamant about what he wanted to accomplish with The Pants Project and what it meant to him and I love his purpose. However, he also had a temper that had gotten him in trouble a few times and it was interesting to see that kind of growth, learning how to feel his anger without physically lashing out. He was really vulnerable and secretive for various reasons but he was really kind as well. Like I said above, I really liked the relationships that were explored in the story. The family dynamic is really great and Liv has a sibling with whom he gets along well, as well as you can with a younger sibling and I loved their relationship! There are quite a few side characters and the ones that had most page time I felt were well developed and interesting to read about. I want to mention that there is one character who does say transphobic and homophobic things. They are clearly condemned in the text and the author makes a point to call them out for being bad things to say and to believe but I want to make sure people know before reading in case it’s triggering.

Emotionally

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March ’17 TBR – Historical Fiction Theme

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Hello everyone!

As you read this, I’m probably at the airport waiting to get on a plane to take me away from the place I’ve called home for the last four years. I can’t really tell you how that’s going to feel like right now, because I’m doing this a whole week before but I can tell you that at this moment I’m both really sad and really excited. I hope this change brings me a lot of new opportunities and I am planning on taking advantage of everything new that’s comes my way. If you’d like to stay up to date with my trip, you can probably see some updates on Twitter, so follow me :). Anyway, I’m here to talk about the books that I hope to read in March. All of these are very tentative because I have no idea how much time I’ll have to read but hopefully I get at least a few read.

SO let’s get started!

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February ’17 TBR – Realistic Fiction Theme

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Hello everyone!

I am already so tired of this year and we’re only on February. It makes no sense whatsoever but that’s how I feel guys. So to hopefully combat this despair that is within me about like life, I stuff my TBRs full of books that I really want to read and that I want to talk about with all of you. Realistic Fiction is basically what I use so I can read contemporary but that doesn’t necessarily revolves around romance.

SO let’s get started!

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ARC Review – Dreadnought by April Daniels

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Dreadnought (Nemesis #1)

Author: April Daniels

Publication: January 24th, 2017

Publisher: Diversion Books

Format: e-ARC, 265 pages

Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, LGBTQ+

Read: January 2017

April DanielsGoodreads

I received an e-ARC of this book from Diversion Books via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

4-stars1

Synopsis
An action-packed series-starter perfect for fans of The Heroine Complex and Not Your Sidekick.
Danny Tozer has a problem: she just inherited the powers of Dreadnought, the world’s greatest superhero. Until Dreadnought fell out of the sky and died right in front of her, Danny was trying to keep people from finding out she’s transgender. But before he expired, Dreadnought passed his mantle to her, and those secondhand superpowers transformed Danny’s body into what she’s always thought it should be. Now there’s no hiding that she’s a girl.
It should be the happiest time of her life, but Danny’s first weeks finally living in a body that fits her are more difficult and complicated than she could have imagined. Between her father’s dangerous obsession with “curing” her girlhood, her best friend suddenly acting like he’s entitled to date her, and her fellow superheroes arguing over her place in their ranks, Danny feels like she’s in over her head.
She doesn’t have time to adjust. Dreadnought’s murderer—a cyborg named Utopia—still haunts the streets of New Port City, threatening destruction. If Danny can’t sort through the confusion of coming out, master her powers, and stop Utopia in time, humanity faces extinction.

I am a cisgender, straight woman and I know very little about transgender issues. If I say anything in this review that can be seen as offensive to the transgender community, please let me know!

Also here’s a review by a trans woman writer which I found on this list of reviews of trans/non-binary literature by trans/non-binary reviewers.

Critically

Plot – 4 out of 5 stars
The plot of this book was really action packed and intense. It kicks off right away with the scene described in the blurb and has a lot of emotional and powerful moments throughout. There were times when I was a little confused with the world building. It was kind of choppy, some things I felt were over explained with a lot of time spent with them and others didn’t have as much of a spotlight. However, I really enjoyed how the author explored themes of family, friendship, identity and acceptance.

Writing Style – 3 out of 5 stars
Honestly, it was hard for me to get into this book in the beginning. It had a medium pace but I still felt like the book dragged. For some reason, the book took me a really long time to read even though I was enjoying it. The writing style is really descriptive and detailed though I felt like some things were more so than others. And it’s also graphic and unapologetic when depicting not only action scenes but the prejudices that Danny faces.

Characters – 4 out of 5 stars
I really liked the characters in this series though for some reason I was very confused with Danny’s race. I don’t know why going into this book it was something that I fixated on, I can’t even tell you why, but I couldn’t picture her for half of the book because it never specifically said the color of her skin. There’s a certain point where another character comments on her whiteness and that’s the only mention of it. I don’t know if it’s just because I’m trying to be more conscious about race or what, but yeah that threw me for a loop. But anyway, I really liked Danny as a narrator, though there is SO MUCH going on in her life from the moment that we meet her that it sometimes made it hard for me to wrap my head around. She’s very happy about the situation she finds herself in but also really scared and nervous about how that is going to change her life. She struggles a lot with decisions and I liked her sweet, kind and brave nature. Sometimes I think she pushed herself too far too fast and it made me nervous for her well being but it definitely showed the determination she has. There are also a lot of side characters in this book, so many that it felt like they weren’t developed enough. I wanted some of them to have more page time and others to have a whole lot less than they ended up having. They were all very unique and I had some favorites obviously, though again, I got some mixed signals with the appearances of some of them. There’s also a lot of antagonists I guess you could say, people who are against Danny for some reason or another and damn did those characters create so much crap for the poor girl. It was so harsh and painful and yet so brutally honest and real, specially since this is an own voices trans book that it broke my heart and pissed me the f off at the same time.

Emotionally

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January ’17 TBR – High Fantasy Theme

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Hello everyone!

Happy new year everyone! I am so excited to be starting a whole new year, I hope it’s a year filled with happiness and courage for all of you as well as for myself. Because I try to start the year off with my best foot forward, I try to do things that make me the most happy in January. That means that every year I start by reading books from my favorite genre, High Fantasy. This month is pretty full of series that I need to complete and I also have a lot of books that I didn’t finish in December that I need to finish this month.

SO let’s get started!

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Book Traveling Thursdays Dec. 22nd – It’s Christmas Time!

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Hello everyone!

It’s BTT time! This is a weekly meme created by Danielle at Danielle’s Book Blog and Catia at TheGirlWhoReadTooMuch. You can find all of the information you’ll need to participate on the Goodreads page.

This week’s topic is It’s Christmas Time!! Choose a book that makes you think about Christmas. I have only read one book that has a Christmas theme to it and that’s the one that I’m going to share with you today.

SO let’s get started!

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Most Anticipated Winter Releases

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Hello everyone!

I am back today to talk about my most anticipated releases of the upcoming winter season, from December 2016, January and February of 2017. Honestly, my mind if blown that we’re almost to 2017 already! There’s been so much talk lately of all these new and shiny 2017 releases and I’m really excited to talk about some of the ones that have specially caught my eye. I have a total of 16 books to talk about so make sure to click on the cover if you would like to see their Goodreads page:).

SO let’s get started!

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December ’16 TBR – Shape Shifters Theme

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Hello everyone!

One more month added to my urban fantasy and paranormal reads. I was originally going to read books about werewolves since I’m a huge fan of them but I realized that I also have a few books were characters shift into things that are not wolves that I also really want to read so I made it a more inclusive theme. On another note, IT’S FREAKING DECEMBER! How the hell did that happen guys? I’m super happy though since Christmas is my favorite holiday. I’m spending every single day in this month singing Christmas songs #noregrets.

SO let’s get started!

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T5W Nov. 23rd – Books I Want to Re-Read

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Hello everyone!

Time for another Top 5 Wednesday. Top 5 Wednesday was created by Lainey from gingerreadslainey and is now hosted by Sam from Thoughts on Tomes and if you would like to join, here is the link for the Goodreads group with all the information.

This week’s topic is Top 5 Books I Want to Re-Read. I talk about books I want to re-read all the time. Particularly during T5W topics when I remember how much I loved them and how I want to experience their magnificence again. But I have not followed through with any of those books. But I really hope I buckle down and get some re-reading done next year, at least with the books I’m going to mention now.

SO let’s get started!

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