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Reviews
Across the Green Grass Fields by Seanan McGuire
Ascender, Volume 2: The Dead Sea by Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen
Bait and Witch by Angela M. Sanders
Black Canary: Ignite by Meg Cabot and Cara McGee
Clues to the Universe by Christina Li
Delicious in Dungeon, Volume 6 by Ryoko Kui
Five Unicorn Flush by T.J. Berry
Ghost-Spider, Volume 2: Party People by Seanan McGuire and Ig Guara (Illustrations)
Happily Ever Afters by Elise Bryant
The Haunting of Rookward House by Darcy Coates
Hide and Seek by Sarah Mlynowski, Lauren Myracle and Emily Jenkins
The Hound of Florence by Felix Salten
Legend in Green Velvet by Elizabeth Peters
Legendborn by Tracy Deonn
Magic and Macaroons by Bailey Cates
The Meet-Cute Project by Rhiannon Richardson
Mighty Jack and the Goblin King by Ben Hatke
Mistletoe Man by Susan Wittig Albert
My Almost Flawless Tokyo Dream Life by Rachel Cohn
No Such Thing as Ghosts by Ursula Vernon
Oh My Gods! by Stephanie Cooke, Insha Fitzpatrick, and Juliana Moon (Illustrations)
On What Grounds by Cleo Coyle (re-read)
Roman and Jewel by Dana L. Davis
Shopaholic to the Stars by Sophie Kinsella
Sky Island by L. Frank Baum
Something Borrowed by Richelle Mead
Spoiler Alert by Olivia Dade
Spore by Alex Scarrow
Stella's Stellar Hair by Yesenia Moises
These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong
Winter of Secrets by Vicki Delany

Miscellaneous
December 2020 Sources

December 2020 Summary

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4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

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These Violent Delights: 01/18/21

These Violent Delights

These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong is set in Shanghai in 1926. Juliette Cai has returned home from New York to help run the Scarlet Gang. Their main rival is the Russian gang, the White Flowers. At first squint, this novel is clearly inspired by Romeo and Juliet but reframed, re-contextualized.

But this isn't strictly a historical fiction about Europe's continued interest and meddling in China. Primarily this is a horror mystery. There are multiple sightings of a monster. There is some contagion coming out of the water that is driving people to kill themselves.

I'm going to freely admit that the bug mystery is what kept me reading. Rather than a straight up retelling of tragedy reframed as a more recent historical fiction, we get to see versions of Shakespeare's famous enemies to lovers being forced to work together to save their city from a potentially supernatural threat.

That said, the mystery can be solved. The clues are there. It's a satisfying conclusion and a rip-snorter of a climax. I look forward to what Chloe Gong comes up with next.

The sequel, Our Violent Ends is scheduled for release on November 16, 2021.

Five stars

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