Welcome back to Shannon’s Hot Takes! I was only able to finish two Hot Reads this past week, but they were both winners in my book. Come on down to the Teen Room to check them out, and any others you can carry! Feel free to leave a comment or question down below and I will get back to you ASAP.

Notes from My Captivity by Kathy Parks

Like I said in last week’s post, it is unusual for me to read something that is not fantasy/science fiction YA, but the premise of this novel was too interesting for me to resist. Who doesn’t want to read about a girl being kidnapped by mysterious Russian hermits in Siberia? I could NOT put this one down and read it in a day. Everything that happened was so unexpected! This novel was so much creepier and more violent than I thought it would be, and it both warmed and broke my heart. All you need to know is that when I finished the last page, I felt like a changed woman, and that is the sign of a really great book! Read this NOW!

Onyx & Ivory by Mindee Arnett

I loved this book. The story started out a bit slow, and there was a lot of world-building that the author throws at the reader very quickly. The world of Rime is unique. I appreciated the fact that it melded magic with technology, and we got hints that there were other places in this world that did not have magic at all. I look forward to reading about them in the obvious sequel(s). That the story is written in the third-person, but from two different points of view, was a nice change from the usual first-person narration that so many YA novels utilize. If you don’t usually read fantasy, then this book is probably not for you. But, if you appreciate new and fantastic worlds, with complex heroes and an understated love story, then you should read Onyx & Ivory.

Shannon is a Teen and IT Librarian for the Kirkwood Public Library. She is new to St. Louis and enjoys exploring the city. Her hobbies include gaming of all kinds, reading fantasy and true crime books, and working on her novel and comic book series. Her favorite authors include Terry Brooks, Agatha Christie, Ann Rule, and Holly Black.