my ARCs

I don’t know about you, but I have a lot of ARCs that I’ve been meaning to get to. Here’s a brief list of the ARCs that I’m going to be featuring on my blog (or Netgalley) in the next few months:

Uqasha by Maria Isabella

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Uqasha is a beautiful, intelligent, feisty 22-year-old woman in cosmopolitan Kuala Lumpur. She has everything a woman her age wants a gorgeous boyfriend, designer wardrobe, money in the bank, her own car and the best education that money can buy. She also has abandonment issue thanks to her parents, who keep sending her away when they are faced with another problem they don t want to deal with.

The latest of these is a man confessing to having sex out of wedlock with her and offering to marry her as a way to atone their sins. Her parents agree and the wedding is set in a week. Uqasha finds herself unable to escape her fate. Wedded to a man she doesn t love and yet can t resist physically, she is caught in a dilemma. She is finding it more and more difficult not to fall in love with Adam. Uqasha and Adam have secrets from the past threatening to jeopardize their budding love.

Haunted by past mistakes and histories, Uqasha has to try to solve one problem after another. Will she survive? Will she give in completely to Adam? Or will everything end in the ultimate heartbreak?

Uqasha is exploring the place of a woman in Modern Islam as a daughter, a wife, a friend and a person. She is finding as her contemporary – millennials if you will – how tricky it is to circumvent life in the maze of social media. She is challenging the archaic social and religion construct including defying the rules and punishments in marriage and in relationship between man and woman.

Uqasha is the next Feminist Icon. She is badass and she is Muslim.

Where the Stars Rise edited by  Lucas K. Law and Derwin Mak

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Follow twenty-three science fiction and fantasy authors on their journeys through Asia and beyond. Stories that explore magic and science. Stories about love, revenge, and choices. Stories that challenge ideas about race, belonging, and politics. Stories about where we come from and where we are going.

Each wrestling between ghostly pasts and uncertain future. Each trying to find a voice in history.

Orphans and drug-smuggling in deep space. Mechanical arms in steampunk Vancouver. Djinns and espionage in futuristic Istanbul. Humanoid robot in steamy Kerala. Monsters in the jungles of Cebu. Historic time travel in Gyeongbok Palace. A rocket launch in post-apocalyptic Tokyo. A drunken ghost in Song Dynasty China. A displaced refugee skating on an ice planet. And much more.

Embrace them as you take on their journeys. And don’t look back . . .

I am Thunder by Muhammad Khan

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Fifteen-year-old Muzna Saleem, who dreams of being a writer, struggles with controlling parents who only care about her studying to be a doctor. Forced to move to a new school in South London after her best friend is shamed in a scandal, Muzna realizes that the bullies will follow her wherever she goes. But deciding to stand and face them instead of fighting her instinct to disappear is harder than it looks when there’s prejudice everywhere you turn. Until the gorgeous and confident Arif shows an interest in her, encouraging Muzna to explore her freedom.

But Arif is hiding his own secrets and, along with his brother Jameel, he begins to influence Muzna with their extreme view of the world. As her new freedom starts to disappear, Muzna is forced to question everything around her and make a terrible choice – keep quiet and betray herself, or speak out and betray her heart?

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The Line Becomes a River by Francisco Cantú

THE LINE BECOMES A RIVER presents a personal examination into the structural violence that has become US-Mexico border’s defining characteristic. Attention to the border has never been more pronounced than it is today. The images called up by politicians and the media loom in our collective consciousness- the intractable corruption, the violence, “The Wall.” As Cantú wrestles with his sense of responsibility and hopelessness, he opens up a nuanced, transformative conversation and exposes the realities of the deep human struggles of those who defend and those who cross.

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Dreams Beyond the Shore by Tamika Gibson

Seventeen-year-old Chelsea Marchand was pretty satisfied with her life. Until recently. Willing to play the dutiful daughter as her father’s bid to become Prime Minister of their island home brings her family into intense public scrutiny, Chelsea is swept along by the strong tidal wave of politics and becomes increasingly disturbed by her father’s duplicity. She finds a reprieve when she meets Kyron, a kindred spirit encased in low riding blue jeans. The two share a bond as he too struggles to get beyond his father’s shadow.

But when Chelsea discovers an even darker more sinister side to her father’s world, a discovery that makes her question the man he is and the woman she wants to be, she must decide how much of her own dreams she is willing to compromise to make her father’s come true. But can she find the strength to stand up to her father and chart her own journey?

Tamika Gibson serves up a fascinating and stirring debut novel about growing up and accepting who you are, regardless of who your parents may be. Buoyed by the rhythms, heat and lyrical lilt of contemporary Trinidad and Tobago, Dreams Beyond the Shore blends politics and romance in a heartwarming story declaring that decisions matter far more than destiny.

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Riot Days by Maria Alyokhina

In February 2012, after smuggling an electric guitar into Moscow’s iconic central cathedral, Maria Alyokhina and other members of the radical collective Pussy Riot performed a provocative “Punk Prayer,” taking on the Orthodox church and its support for Vladimir Putin’s authoritarian regime.

For this, they were charged with “organized hooliganism” and were tried while confined in a cage and guarded by Rottweilers. That trial and Alyokhina’s subsequent imprisonment became an international cause. For Alyokhina, her two-year sentence launched a bitter struggle against the Russian prison system and an iron-willed refusal to be deprived of her humanity. Teeming with protests and police, witnesses and cellmates, informers and interrogators, Riot Days gives voice to Alyokhina’s insistence on the right to say no, whether to a prison guard or to the president. Ultimately, this insistence delivers unprecedented victories for prisoners’ rights.

Evocative, wry, laser-sharp, and laconically funny, Alyokhina’s account is studded with song lyrics, legal transcripts, and excerpts from her jail diary–dispatches from a young woman who has faced tyranny and returned with the proof that against all odds even one person can force its retreat.

I’m highly excited to read every single one of these books – they’re pretty much all tackling topics that I know very little about, so I imagine that I’ll learn a lot from these particular books!

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