As part of celebrating Women's History Month, we'd like to highlight the first installment of novels that focus of fierce women that, as the heading states, should not be crossed.
Love at First Spite by Anna E. Collins
1/4/2022 by Graydon House
They say living well is the best revenge. But sometimes, spreading the misery seems a whole lot more satisfying. That’s interior designer Dani Porter’s justification for buying the vacant lot next to her ex-fiancé's house…the house they were supposed to live in together, before he cheated on her with their realtor. Dani plans to build a vacation rental that will a) mess with his view and his peace of mind and b) prove that Dani is not someone to be stepped on. Welcome to project Spite House.
Pirate Queens: Dauntless Women Who Dared to Rule the High Seas by Leigh Lewis
1/11/2022 by National Geographic
This wow-worthy book proves that women have been making their mark in all aspects of history―even the high seas! Meet Ching Shih, a Chinese pirate who presided over a fleet of 80,000 men (by contrast, Blackbeard had some 300). Get the scoop on Anne Bonny who famously ran away from an arranged marriage to don trousers and brandish a pistol in the Bahamas. And there are more!
Second Star to the Left by Megan Van Dyke
2/15/2022 by City Owl Press
Banished for doing the unthinkable, selling the hottest drug in Neverland—pixie dust, Tinker Bell wants absolution. Determined to find a way home, Tink doesn’t hesitate to follow the one lead she has, even if that means seducing a filthy pirate to steal precious gems out from under his…hook.
The Hitman's Daughter by Carolyne Topdjian
2/22/2022 by Agora/Polis Books
When hotel employee Mave Michael finds the resident artist dead, and shortly thereafter security finds Mave alone with the body, the reputation that Mave has fought long and hard to outrun comes back to haunt her: Her father is a notorious hitman serving multiple-life sentences in prison. She has changed her name and location dozens of times, but he somehow manages to track her down—even sending her a postcard on the eve of her birthday, January 1st. She's the perfect choice to frame for murder, and now the number one suspect. Mave can no longer deny the lessons in survival her father taught her, or her uncanny sixth-sense in “finding” lost objects. To save herself, she not only has to stop running from her own past, she must unearth the history of the hotel, its elite guests and buried secrets—one deadly sin at a time.
Only a Monster by Vanessa Len
2/22/2022 by HarperTeen
It should have been the perfect summer. Sent to stay with her late mother’s eccentric family in London, sixteen-year-old Joan is determined to enjoy herself. She loves her nerdy job at the historic Holland House, and when her super cute co-worker Nick asks her on a date, it feels like everything is falling into place. But she soon learns the truth. Her family aren’t just eccentric: they’re monsters, with terrifying, hidden powers. And Nick isn’t just a cute boy: he’s a legendary monster slayer, who will do anything to bring them down. As she battles Nick, Joan is forced to work with the beautiful and ruthless Aaron Oliver, heir to a monster family that hates her own. She’ll have to embrace her own monstrousness if she is to save herself, and her family. Because in this story . . . . . . she is not the hero.
One For All by Lillie Lainoff
3/8/2022 by FSG (Macmillan)
An OwnVoices, gender-bent retelling of The Three Musketeers, in which a girl with a chronic illness trains as a Musketeer and uncovers secrets, sisterhood, and self-love. Tania de Batz is most herself with a sword in her hand. Everyone thinks her near-constant dizziness makes her weak, nothing but “a sick girl.” But Tania wants to be strong, independent, a fencer like her father—a former Musketeer and her greatest champion. Then Papa is brutally, mysteriously murdered. His dying wish? For Tania to attend finishing school. But L’Académie des Mariées, Tania realizes, is no finishing school. It’s a secret training ground for new Musketeers: women who are socialites on the surface, but strap daggers under their skirts, seduce men into giving up dangerous secrets, and protect France from downfall. And they don’t shy away from a sword fight.
Casino Queen by Cara Bertoia
3/16/2022 by Wild Rose Press
Caroline Popov, alone, heartbroken, and deeply in debt ends up in glamorous Palm Springs, California where Native casinos have just opened, offering employment to thousands. She lands a job at the Palm Oasis Casino and is mentored by the charismatic tribal chairman, John Tovar. Embraced by casino culture, Caroline works her way up to casino manager of the Night Hawk, in the High Desert town of Joshua Tree. There, she is responsible for managing multicultural team members, satisfying the demands of challenging guests, growing revenue while rooting out corruption.In the process of rediscovering her inner strength, she learns, you have to gamble like your life depends on it. Because it often does.
The Girl Beyond The Gate by Becca Day
3/22/2022 by Embla/Bonnier Books
Arriving at her new home in the exclusive gated community of Kensington Grove, journalist Jodie Evelyn instantly feels on edge. Though it’s beautiful, something about the community, built around a converted psychiatric hospital, unnerves her – as does her new neighbour Norah Williams and her terminally-ill teenage daughter, Lacey. When a death rocks the community, she suspects Norah may have been involved and sets out to save Lacey from her mother. But as Jodie delves deeper into Norah’s shadowy past, she is forced to come face to face with her own, with devastating consequences.
Wild and Wicked Things by Francesca May
3/29/2022 by Hatchette/Orbit
On Crow Island, people whispered, real magic lurked just below the surface. But Annie Mason never expected her enigmatic new neighbour to be a witch.When she witnesses a confrontation between her best friend Bea and the infamous Emmeline Delacroix at one of Emmeline's extravagantly illicit parties, Annie is drawn into a glittering, haunted world. A world where magic can buy what money cannot; a world where the consequence of a forbidden blood bargain might be death.
List curated by: Shameez Patel Papathanasiou
Posted to the blog by: Ren Hutchings