ARC Reviews: Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute, Chick Magnet, and Don’t You Forget About Me

I am not doing the best of jobs staying on top of telling y’all about the books I’m receiving for review and I really need to do better about that. But in the meantime, here are three books that are out that you can already read! So excited to talk to you about Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute by Talia Hibbert, her debut YA, Chick Magnet by Emma Barry, and Don’t You Forget About Me by Naima Simone! Thanks so much to Netgalley for each of these books, though I read each of them in a different format than the e-ARC I received. I purchased the audiobook for Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute and then read Chick Magnet and Don’t You Forget About Me using my Kindle Unlimited subscription. Chick Magnet is a KU listen and ebook borrow so I HIGHLY recommend! Now let’s get to the reviews!

ARC Reviews: Covers of Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute by Talia Hibbert, Chick Magnet by Emma Barry, and Don’t You Forget About Me by Naima Simone

Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute by Talia Hibbert

I have been reading less and less YA every year, but how was I supposed to pass up a new Talia Hibbert? I was not. And I’m so glad I didn’t because Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute had Hibbert’s trademark humor, emotions, mental health representation, and connection to the people in our character’s lives. It also involved nature, but not in the All Rhodes Lead Here way, more in the my actual experience with nature. (Basically, ew, I do not want to go there, turned reluctant admiration turned REMINDER, THIS IS WHY WE DON’T GO OUTSIDE.) I might be dramatic about it, but I’m just saying. Nature is DANGEROUS, okay?

Anyways, this book is really great if you already like Talia Hibbert’s writing. If you don’t… Well, this book isn’t going to change your mind, honestly. It still very much feels like a Talia Hibbert novel, it’s just featuring characters that are a little younger. But I, for one, absolutely enjoyed it! (And P.S. the audiobook was really enjoyable too!)

Chick Magnet by Emma Barry

Chick Magnet is a gorgeously written book that honestly feels so grounded and real in the world. It doesn’t shy away from talking about the consequences of the Pandemic, though it does sort of talk about it like it’s over? More in the way that in most Southern small towns, people are just out here recovering from it and ignoring the fact that we should all still be wearing masks. Anyways, Nicole has moved to the small town her grandma was born in following an extremely public break up. She is a chicken influencer, which, I’ll be honest, I did not know that was a thing. Her next door neighbor is a very grumpy and gruff veterinarian, who turns out to have such a sweet and soft underbelly. Will’s got a lot going on and getting to see his perspective was so, so powerful. His veterinarian practice is failing because of the Pandemic, mostly, but he really is taking the failure of his business entirely personally and is struggling. I loved his perspective so much.

Honestly, everything about this book was really well done. I’m not sure what it is that kept me from falling head over heels for it and giving it a five star, but even without that last .5 star, I cannot recommend this book enough. It’s on KU and you can get the audiobook with your subscription as well. If you haven’t read it yet and you want an emotional (but not emotionally manipulative) read, please pick this one up. Emma Barry is SO talented and I cannot wait for book two in this series!

Don’t You Forget About Me
by Naima Simone

Don’t You Forget About Me is a very interesting second chance romance. I didn’t really read the blurb when I requested the book from Netgalley, I just clicked request because I love Naima Simone. It’s interesting too because I’ve read a lot of different book lengths from Simone, but this one felt like such a weird length to me. I think Simone did a lot in these pages (156) and on the one hand I absolutely loved all that she did and on the other hand, I want a 500 page book from Simone because I think she could actually make use of all of those pages.

Anyway, Don’t You Forget About Me features a rock star (King) who left behind the love of his life (Lennon) without a word many years ago. Now, King is back, with a child from a woman he doesn’t really remember, and Lennon is not prepared to see him. While I really liked the romance aspect of this book, Lennon’s father is terrible and I… was sort of struggling with that aspect of the book. This is part of why I think if there were more pages, I would have done better with the book because if the dynamic was a little more fleshed out, I either would have been more sympathetic or I would have DNF’d it. So… YMMV, but Naima Simone definitely delivered on the spice, as always!

Bonus DNF Review:

Heard It in a Love Song
by Tracey Garvis Graves

Honestly, this book is probably fine. There was nothing offensive about it when I was reading it, but ultimately, the book failed to pull me in and I have had zero desire to pick it back up for nearly a year. So I’ve decided for the sake of my own well-being to just call it a day and declare this one an official DNF so I don’t have to stress over it still hanging out on my Netgalley page. That said, if you have a feeling I would love it if I pushed through, let me know!

Closing Thoughts

I definitely enjoyed my ARC reads in January, with Chick Magnet being my favorite by a lot. Have you read any of these books? If so, let me know!


5 responses to “ARC Reviews: Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute, Chick Magnet, and Don’t You Forget About Me”

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