Showing posts with label louise gornall. Show all posts
Showing posts with label louise gornall. Show all posts

Friday, January 20, 2017

Recommendation: Under Rose-Tainted Skies - Louise Gornall: Agoraphobia and Being House-Bound

In UNDER ROSE-TAINTED SKIES, Norah is house-bound because of her agoraphobia and steps out of her comfort zone when she develops a crush on Luke, the cute boy next door.

What intrigued me: I've been looking for more mental illness #ownvoices stories because I've been disappointed with books by authors who don't write from their own experiences lately.

Compelling story and lovely protagonist

UNDER ROSE-TAINTED SKIES is a very quiet story of a girl with OCD, agoraphobia, anxiety, and depression. It's definitely unlike anything I've ever read before, because it absolutely does focus on Norah's struggle with her illnesses while telling a compelling story that you'll surely grow very fond of. From her daily struggles and little things she needs to check periodically to her crippling fear of other things and her reaction when confronted with them, UNDER ROSE-TAINTED SKIES shows the full spectrum of Norah's illnesses and tells the story in an honest and compelling way.

It absolutely shows that Gornall knows what she's talking about. I've never read anything like this. Protagonist Norah is so lovely and adorable that can only get invested in her story even if you don't share her mental illnesses. Gornall doesn't shy away from anything and describes Norah's life in such a brutally honest matter that it's awe-inspiring.

Mental illness without romanticization

The thing I love most about UNDER ROSE-TAINTED SKIES is how unapologetic and honest it is. It's not a love story, not a fun contemporary, not a coming-of-age story, it's just a novel about a girl with mental illnesses and her daily life, with a side of a little romance. If you're looking for a typical YA romance story, this is the wrong pick. UNDER ROSE-TAINTED SKIES feels a little literary and different, just completely unique and very much delightfully so. 
The side romance actually is what I was scared about the most because I feared this might venture into romanticization as so so so many other novels about mental illnesses do. The protagonist falls in love and suddenly they're cured. 

That's absolutely not what UNDER ROSE-TAINTED SKIES does. It does quite the opposite of romanticization actually by having the love interest Luke seek to understand Norah's illnesses and not trying to change a single thing about her. They're such an adorable couple and it's so refreshing to read a love story involving a sick character who doesn't change a single thing about themselves to be with their partner. 




Overall: Do I Recommend?

This is the kind of story I'm hoping many people with illnesses will pick up. It's so heart-warming to see a story like that and I can just whole-heartedly recommend UNDER ROSE-TAINTED SKIES to everyone who's either living with similar mental illnesses and/or seeks to read and understand what life for people with these illnesses might look like. UNDER ROSE-TAINTED skies is bold, daring, and beautiful. Give it a shot.

Note: Trigger warning for self-harm

Additional Info

Published: Jan 3rd 2017
Pages: 320
Publisher: Clarion Books
Genre: YA / Contemporary
ISBN: 9780544736511

"Norah has agoraphobia and OCD. When groceries are left on the porch, she can’t step out to get them. Struggling to snag the bags with a stick, she meets Luke. He’s sweet and funny, and he just caught her fishing for groceries. Because of course he did.

Norah can’t leave the house, but can she let someone in? As their friendship grows deeper, Norah realizes Luke deserves a normal girl. One who can lie on the front lawn and look up at the stars. One who isn’t so screwed up.
 "(Source: Goodreads)

What's your favorite read featuring a mentally-ill character?

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Tuesday, December 6, 2016

10 New-To-Me Authors Whose Books I Loved in 2016 feat. Melissa Landers, Sylvain Neuvel & more | Top Ten Tuesday

All of these people write fantastic books and contributed to making 2016 a *great* reading year for me. Looking forward to all their new releases.

Louise Gornall
She absolutely slayed me with her fantastic and beautiful debut UNDER ROSE-TAINTED SKIES. A must-read for anyone who has an invisible illness.

Julia Ember
She forever won my heart through UNICORN TRACKS. The first fantasy novel set in an African setting that felt authentic to me and that I wholeheartedly loved. Also it features lesbians. She's got a couple more queer books coming in 2017 and I can't wait!

Meg Haston
I've absolutely loved PAPERWEIGHT. So much that I actually read it *twice* this year. Such a raw and beautiful and courageous story about a girl with an eating disorder. A must-read if you can handle dark contempories. I can't wait for her next release in 2017, counting the days!

Moïra Fowley-Doyle 
My god, this woman is an artist. Her writing is insanely beautiful. Her magical realism debut THE ACCIDENT SEASON really convinced me to keep reading her books because of her writing style. She's got something involving witches coming in 2017 and I've already put my spyglasses on, I'm waiting.

Melissa Landers
I really liked ALIENATED and will probably read STARFLIGHT soon. I'm a sucker for YA aliens, this was just a matter of time until we two cross paths. She totally snagged the YA alien throne from JLA for me. But psst. 

April Genevieve Tucholke
It's been months and I'm still not over the brilliance that is WINK POPPY MIDNIGHT. I love her writing style and ideas so much.

Zoraida Córdova
Y'all know how much I love LABYRINTH LOST, considering that I can't stop talking about it. I'm dying to get my hands on the sequels, we all need more bisexual Latina witches in our lives

Sarah Crossan
ONE and APPLE & RAIN both absolutely shattered me emotionally. I plan on reading a lot more books by her, she's just such an extradordinary feel for her characters. My new contemporary queen and a worthy addition to my list of favorite authors!

Sylvain Neuvel
SLEEPING GIANTS was the cause of the biggest reading slump I've had. I think, ever. This book absolutely killed me, I'm writing this from the afterlife. I need book two. Like, yesterday.

Claudia Gray
Of course we cannot forget the author of my favorite book series in the entire world. A THOUSAND PIECES OF YOU was all I talked about mid-2016 and will probably forever be a favorite. I just love a good parellel universe novel.

Which authors slayed you with their brilliance in 2016?

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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

16 Fantastic 2016/17 YA Books by Disabled Authors | #DiversityBoost

This month's #DiversityBoost focuses on disabled authors and their fantastic upcoming or recent releases.

Do yourself a favor, diversify your shelf, and add all those fantastic books to your TBR on Goodreads.


THIS IS WHERE IT ENDS - Marieke Nijkamp
An intense contemporary about a school shooting. (Jan 2016, Sourcebooks Fire) Goodreads

ON THE EDGE OF GONE - Corinne Duyvis
An exciting sci-fi about humanity having to colonize a new planet after a comet hits Earth. (Mar 2016, Amulet Books) Goodreads

GENA/FINN - Hannah Moskowitz & Kat Helgeson
Told in blog posts, texts, and chats, two girls bond over message boards and fan fiction. (May 16th 2016, Chronicle) Goodreads

RUN - Kody Keplinger
A delightfully queer contemporary about friendship that you don't want to miss. (Jun 2016, Scholastic Press) Goodreads


A contemporary with a blind protagonist whose eyesight gets restored but has been told lies about his crush's looks. (Jan 2017, Little, Brown Books) Goodreads

UNFOLDING - Jonathan Friesen
A mystery with a protagonist that has frequent seizures. (Jan 2017, Blink) Goodreads

A house-bound agoraphobic girl falls in love with her cute next-door neighbour. (Jan 2017, Clarion) Goodreads

A queer contemporary set at comic con. (Mar 2017, Swoon Reads) Goodreads

The sequel to THE GIRL FROM EVERYWHERE, a fantastically diverse time travel high fantasy with pirates! (Mar 2017, Greenwillow Books) Goodreads

GIRL OUT OF WATER - Laura Silverman
A coming-of-age novel in the wake of a tragedy. Very excited for this one (May 2017, Sourcebooks Fire) Goodreads

More adventures from Wonder Woman, this time YA style! We all need this in our lives. (Aug 2017, Random House) Goodreads

(other covers yet to be revealed but not any less exciting)

THE STATE OF GRACE - Rachael Lucas
This one features a teen with Asperger's. Uh. Exciting! (April 2017, Macmillan Children's Books) Goodreads

27 HOURS - Tristina Wright
A queer sci-fi set in space. (Oct 2017, Entangled: Teen) Goodreads

GRAY WOLF ISLAND - Tracey Neithercott
Five teens are looking for a treasure on an island. I love a good adventure novel! (2017, Knopf Books for Young Readers) Goodreads

Time travel and magic in 1988 East Berlin. (2017, Albert Whitman) Goodreads

FLOWERS OF LUNA - Jennifer Linsky
A sapphic sci-fi romance involving mining ships in space. (2017, KDP) Goodreads

Special shoutout to Corinne Duyvis, author of OTHERBOUND, ON THE EDGE OF GONE and GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY: COLLECT THEM ALL, who is super lovely and nice and helped me a lot with this list! Give her a follow on twitter.

Which book sounds the most interesting to you?

More #DiversityBoost:

#DiversityBoost is a monthly feature on my blog where I boost and highlight upcoming and recent diverse books or books by diverse authors. 

If you're a diverse author/ have written a diverse book and would like to be in one of my posts, follow my twitter to never miss a submission call!

Previously: 18 Upcoming 2016/17 Books by Latinx Authors

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