Our 15 Most Anticipated Books of Fall 2015


Some will argue that the best time to read is in the summer. You can lay in the grass, lounge on a hammock, perch on a beach chair with the waves lapping at your feet, or just sit in front of an air-conditioner, the breeze blowing through your hair as you read your favorite new book. I tend to be of a different opinion. The fall and early months of winter are the perfect time to settle in with a new book. The cracking of a fresh spine will echo the crunch of the fallen leaves beneath your feet. The soft glow that your Kindle or nook emits fits right in with the soft haze produced by a string of Christmas lights. I think we can all agree that reading a book while wearing your favorite sweatpants and a cozy sweater is far more enjoyable than a wet bathing suit. Continue reading

Cheryl Strayed shares her words of inspiration in ‘Brave Enough’

strayedIf you haven’t caught on to my Cheryl Strayed obsession yet, I may doubt how well you know me, or how closely you follow my writing. It’s been a year to the date since I first picked up her New York Times best-selling memoir, Wild, and I am here to remind you (yet again) that Strayed is one of the most bad ass writers of our time. She has entire websites dedicated to her quotes, and a cult fan following including celebrities like Oprah Winfrey and Reese Witherspoon. Her words of inspiration and courage are laid across coffee mugs, clothing, and even inked permanently on skin. Her prose is both haunting and poetic, as she often reminds readers to use the world as a teacher and bravery as a guiding force.

This fall you can carry Strayed’s words of wisdom with you in her upcoming book, Brave Enough. The book will be released October 27 as a collection of quotes from her novels and memoir, Wild. In a statement, Strayed explains the power quotes have had in her own life, “From the comic to the profound, the simple to the complex, the sorrowful to the ecstatic, the inspiring to the stern, whenever I need consolation or encouragement, a clear-eyed perspective or a swift kick in the pants — which is often — quotes are what I turn to.”

Allow Strayed’s words to bring you to new truths, and give yourself the opportunity to get to know the woman who is a true warrior of love. And, should you find yourself needing more convincing, check out some of my favorite quotes she’s written below.

Don’t surrender all your joy for an idea you used to have about yourself that isn’t true anymore.

Forward is the direction of real life.

Forgiveness doesn’t just sit there like a pretty boy in a bar. Forgiveness is the old fat guy you have to haul up the hill.

Be brave enough to break your own heart.

The best thing you can possibly do with your life is to tackle the motherf*cking shit out of it.

An Interview with ‘Hey Sunshine’ author Tia Giacalone

HEY SUNSHINE Author Tia Giacalone

HEY SUNSHINE Author Tia Giacalone

From the minute I started Hey Sunshine by Tia Giacalone I could hardly put it down. As a new mom, my time spent reading is precious, so I only save it for the best. And Hey Sunshine was definitely the best. A mix of romance and new adult fiction that kept me intrigued and smiling the whole way through. Continue reading

What We’ve Been Reading: August 2015

What We've Been Reading: August 2015When The Daily Quirk team isn’t writing, they’re reading! We decided it would be fun to share our bibliophilia with you by listing what we have been reading each month and giving you our opinions on a three point scale: Must Read, Maybe, or Skip It. Have fun checking out what pages we’ve been turning and feel free to share your own recent reads in the comments! Continue reading

Unruly Women in Media: Katniss Everdeen of ‘The Hunger Games’

Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen in THE HUNGER GAMES (Image Credit: Lionsgate)

Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen in THE HUNGER GAMES (Image Credit: Lionsgate)

Welcome to the final installment of the Unruly Women series! Thus far, we’ve looked at women from the ‘60s, ‘90s and present day. This week, we’re jumping way ahead and analyzing everyone’s favorite futuristic heroine, Katniss Everdeen. Continue reading

Why You Shouldn’t Date a Girl Who Reads

(Image Credit: Djoronimo)

(Image Credit: Djoronimo)

Everyone, ok mostly everyone, remembers the original “You Should Date a Girl Who Reads” by Rosemarie Urquico. It’s this great piece of writing that beautifully describes the characteristics of a girl who reads and how wonderful a life with her would be. I’m an avid reader, and like every other avid reader who read it, I was all like “YES, THIS IS ME, SOMEONE GETS IT! MEN OF THE WORLD COME HITHER AND BEHOLD THIS READING VIXEN!” Continue reading

Book Review: ‘Homecoming’ by Kass Morgan

HomecomingIf you’re a fan of the first two books in the The 100 series by Kass Morgan, or if you’ve caught any episodes of the TV adaptation on the CW, I have good news: book three in the series, Homecoming, is now available.

The story picks up right where Day 21, the second book in the series, left off. Clarke, Bellamy, Wells, and Octavia, along with their new friend Sasha, have been on Earth for several weeks, but dropships carrying the remaining citizens from the Colony (including Glass and Luke) are crash landing as the book begins. Without giving too much away, the characters all face difficult challenges as the Colonists try to reestablish society on their “new” planet.

The first two books in the series end with some pretty wicked cliffhangers. In Homecoming, we finally get a sense of closure when the novel ends, but Morgan leaves enough up in the air that another book wouldn’t be out of the question. With the popularity of the TV adaptation and the success of the book series, I wouldn’t be surprised to see another installment or a spin-off series focusing on some new characters.

One of my favorite things about this book was the strong female characters. It seems like in a lot of YA lit, the female characters leave a lot to be desired. Even when they appear to be assertive and capable, they often take a backseat to the male characters. In Homecoming, however, the ladies are smart, independent and take-charge. When the dropship crash lands on Earth, Clarke immediately rushes to help the wounded. She turns out to be a very capable medic, and she balances her relationship with Bellamy with the work she feels called to do. And he respects her strengths and doesn’t try to stand in her way! It’s pretty great.

Romance is a major factor in this installment of the series. There are several love stories going on throughout the course of the book. We get to see more of some fan-favorite couples (Bellarke!) and watch other romances bloom and grow.

There are still plenty of twists and turns to keep you on your toes. In typical fashion, Morgan is not afraid to break some hearts, and no character is safe. Each character faces the dangers of Earth, the violent Earthborn factions, and the evil Vice Chancellor. Honestly, this book has something for everyone.

I’d definitely recommend this series for fans of dystopian young adult fiction. If you enjoyed The Hunger Games or Divergent, then the The 100 series (and its newest installment, Homecoming) are probably right up your alley. Fans of books that pull you in and keep you on the edge of your seat will definitely want to check this one out.

All about OysterBooks.com

(Image Credit: Dmitry Sunagatov)

(Image Credit: Dmitry Sunagatov)

Watch out Netflix; there’s a new subscription service on the rise! However, unlike our favorite TV and movie-viewing site, the up-and-coming OysterBooks.com caters to those of us who prefer to spend our free time delving into the world of literature. Continue reading

GIVEAWAY: ‘The Remedy’ Don’t Lose Yourself Prize Pack!

GIVEAWAY: 'The Remedy' Don't Lose Yourself  Prize Pack!Suzanne Young’s latest novel, The Remedy, is a gripping story set in a future that is hyper-aware of mental health. A whole profession has been built around grief management, and individuals called “closers” are hired by grieving families to impersonate their deceased loved ones to help them achieve closure. Quinlan McKee began working as a closer at the age of seven, and ten years later, she’s one of the best. However, she’s beginning to confuse her own past with those of the people she’s been hired to portray. Continue reading

Book Review: ‘The Remedy’ by Suzanne Young

FinalBookCover_hiresMost recent dystopian novels occur in a future so distant it is almost unrecognizable. That’s not the case with Suzanne Young’s latest novel, The Remedy. This novel is a prequel to The Program and The Treatment and is set in a world that could be just months in our own future.

Quinlan McKee is seventeen years old, and she works as a closer – someone who is hired to provide closure for grieving families by impersonating their loved one who has passed away. In Quin’s world, mental health is extremely important, and if someone appears unstable, they are mandated to have therapy. Closers exist to help prevent depression and other issues that people face when a loved one dies. Shortly after finishing one assignment, Quin is assigned to an urgent case that changes her forever.

I found this book so fascinating for a number of reasons. Quin’s job is to help others preserve their mental health, but she faces problems of her own from the very beginning. As a closer, she adopts the personality, habits, and style of a deceased person, sometimes for days at a time. She began working as a closer at the age of seven, and as a side effect, she has a hard time distinguishing her past from those of the people she’s pretended to be. Throughout the book, she faces problems keeping her own identity separate.

I really enjoyed that the world was so familiar, but so different at the same time. The technology doesn’t seem outlandish, the landscape is familiar, and the characters seem like any person you might pass on the street. It’s almost like a parallel universe where the government has recognized the importance of mental health and taken things to extremes. There are systems in place to help people maintain peak mental and emotional health, but if people are depressed or have other problems, it seems like they are given consequences instead of help.

Fans of Young’s other books won’t find any familiar characters in the pages of The Remedy, but they will find a very similar tone and feeling of suspense. Young does a great job of keeping you on the hook by revealing little bits of information about Quin’s latest case without giving it all away at once.

For those who like a bit of a love story, this book will not disappoint. In fact, this book has something for everyone. From mystery to romance and everything in between, The Remedy is one of the best new dystopian novels you will read this year.

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Abbie Reetz
Hi! I’m Abbie. I’m a Wisconsin girl who just completed a degree in journalism, which I hope will help me achieve my goal of reading books and writing about them for a living. In my free time, I enjoy reading, watching Doctor Who and hanging out with my boyfriend and his two cats.
Check out more from Abbie Reetz on TDQ…

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What We’ve Been Reading: April 2015

2015 April

When The Daily Quirk team isn’t writing, they’re reading! We decided it would be fun to share our bibliophilia with you by listing what we have been reading each month and giving you our opinions on a three point scale: Must Read, Maybe, or Skip It. Have fun checking out what pages we’ve been turning and feel free to share your own recent reads in the comments! Continue reading

Top Five Classic Book Boyfriends

TRISTAN & ISOLDE (Image Credit: 20th Century Fox)

TRISTAN & ISOLDE (Image Credit: 20th Century Fox)

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a girl reading a book with a boyfriend in it will consider if said man would make a good boyfriend in real life. It’s basic character judgement. Would you let your friend date that boy? Would you allow the protagonist to date him if it was your book? Do you covet him for yourself, even? Despite the lack of plausibility, these wonderings happen from time to time. Continue reading

Lessons I Learned from Cheryl Strayed’s ‘Wild’

Cheryl Strayed (Image Credit: Joni Kabana)

Cheryl Strayed (Image Credit: Joni Kabana)

Dear Cheryl Strayed,

I don’t think I’ll ever forget the moment I finished reading your memoir, Wild. Partly because I sat on a plane in-between two large men, sobbing into the sleeves of my sweater while dodging looks of concerned passengers that seemed to say “get this psycho off our flight.” But mostly because your story, above anything else I’ve ever read, captures exactly what it’s like to be human. For many writers, that’s the ultimate dream, and, well, Cheryl Strayed, you nailed it. You presented yourself to the world in the most real and vulnerable light. You are the warrior of love. Your spirit is etched on each page, and your story will transcend generations. Because you told the story so many of us are living each day, women and men around the world no longer feel ashamed of their messy, complicated, so very human life.

When I first finished reading your book, I’m almost ashamed to admit, I was hesitant to share it with others. I felt like you had let me in on a big secret. In my mind, we had become good friends. To share the memoir with my peers meant we no longer shared this secret understanding of one another. Do I sound crazy yet? Probably. But I’m sure you would be happy to know my selfish possessiveness over you and your story was short lived. I’ve passed my copy of Wild around to friends, family and the like. My second copy sits on my nightstand, and, yes, I’ve also downloaded the Kindle version. I practically preach your words like they’re my own. And maybe that’s because, although I’ve never hiked the Pacific Crest Trail, your story feels like my story, and I know I’m not alone. To know debilitating loss, unconditional love, darkness, lightness, wholeness, rawness, complication, hope, forgiveness, and strength are, in a way, the stories we all live. The lessons you learned within each step you took along the trail are very much so the lessons each of us can learn from as we walk along the messy journey known as life.

TDQ readers, if you haven’t read Wild yet, here’s a sneak peak at the words of Strayed. I wouldn’t make a promise I can’t keep, and I can promise you her story will move you. There’s also a good chance you might find a little bit of your story hidden within each page.

“I knew that if I allowed fear to overtake me, my journey was doomed. Fear, to a great extent, is born of a story we tell ourselves, and so I chose to tell myself a different story.”

“I’m a free-spirit who never had the balls to be free.”

“Alone had always felt like an actual place to me, as if it weren’t a state of being, but rather a room where I could retreat to be who I really was.”

“How wild it was, to let it be.”

“Fear begets fear. Power begets power. I willed myself to beget power. And it wasn’t long before I actually wasn’t afraid.”

Cheryl Strayed, Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail

Strayed is also the author of best-selling advice column collection, Tiny Beautiful Things and a novel, Torch. She currently resides in Portland Oregon with her husband and children.

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What We’ve Been Reading: March 2015


When The Daily Quirk team isn’t writing, they’re reading! We decided it would be fun to share our bibliophilia with you by listing what we have been reading each month and giving you our opinions on a three point scale: Must Read, Maybe, or Skip It. Have fun checking out what pages we’ve been turning and feel free to share your own recent reads in the comments! Continue reading