25th October 2016 Releases

Happy Release Day to:

V.C. Andrews [also published as Virginia Andrews]
The Mirror Sisters
Simon & Schuster (US, UK, CA & AU: 25th October 2016)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

As identical twins, their mother insists that everything about them be identical: their clothes, their toys, their friends…the number of letters in their names, Haylee Blossom Fitzgerald and Kaylee Blossom Fitzgerald. If one gets a hug, the other must, too. If one gets punished, the other must be, too. Homeschooled at an early age, when the girls attend a real high school they find little ways to highlight the differences between them. But when Haylee runs headfirst into the dating scene, both sisters are thrust into a world their mother never prepared them for – causing one twin to pursue the ultimate independence. The one difference between the two girls may spell the difference between life…and a fate worse than death.

Emiko Jean
We’ll Never Be Apart
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (US: 25th October 2016)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

Murder. Fire. Revenge. That’s all seventeen-year-old Alice Monroe thinks about. Committed to a mental ward at Savage Isle, Alice is haunted by memories of the fire that killed her boyfriend, Jason. A blaze her twin sister Cellie set. But when Chase, a mysterious, charismatic patient, agrees to help her seek vengeance, Alice begins to rethink everything. Writing out the story of her troubled past in a journal, she must confront hidden truths. Is the one person she trusts only telling her half the story?

My Weird Hobby: Reporting and Blocking on Twitter

I don’t know when exactly it started, but the circumstances are timeless.

A black woman starts a supportive hashtag on Twitter, which Trends…and that means Twitter at large finds out. The hashtag is trolled, and the woman harassed. Friends say her mentions are filled with abuse, so we all chip in to report it to Twitter.

A Jewish woman liveTweets a debate night on TV, and somehow her Tweets are shared to 4chan. (I’ve never been to that site, but have heard it’s even more toxic than Reddit.) Her mentions are filled with abuse, and we all chip in to report it to Twitter.

A Muslim woman sees the results of some website’s poll, and doesn’t believe Australians would want a ban on Muslim immigrants to Australia. She starts her own poll, expecting the results to be much more open-minded and friendly. But the poll is spread to 4chan and Reddit, where thousands of people – including a lot of people whose Twitter profiles say they’re American – rush to vote. Twitter time-locks polls after 24 hours, but for weeks the woman’s mentions are filled with abuse, and I chip in to report it to Twitter.

A woman well-known for feminism has recently released a book about being female. She often does public-speaking, and writes for some publications. And every time she does, her mentions are filled with abuse, and I chip in to report it to Twitter.

I also started a BlockTogether list. I’m not sure how it works, but if people subscribe to it, they’ll get to see all the Twitter accounts I’ve blocked, and maybe they’ll want to block them, too. And since reporting to Twitter sometimes feels fruitless, blocking someone will at least prevent them from reading your Tweets, and hopefully that’ll stop them from flooding your mentions with abuse.

I started all this a few months ago, maybe more. But I’ve made reporting and blocking a part of my daily online activity ever since. It is not pleasant. But when you know there’s a lot of abuse going on, and you feel like you have to do SOMETHING, this is relatively easy – done in the comfort of wherever, for whatever time. It’s non-confrontational. And even if reporting to Twitter doesn’t stop the abuse, at least you’ve pre-emptively blocked them before they can come after you. And if you can share your own BlockTogether list, other people can do the same.

How do I find more people to report and block every day? I wish I’d got everyone, so there’d be no need to do this anymore, but unfortunately Twitter doesn’t work that way. The thing about R&B’ing hundreds of people a day is that you see patterns in the abuse and the abusers. Certain terms they use against others. Their usernames. The images and hashtags on their profiles. Their stands on certain issues.

Not every abuser is so open with all of this in their profile, but most of the people I’ve blocked are. You start forming a mental checklist, and then run some of them through Twitter’s Search function for all the Tweets containing that word in their Tweet or their name. (The main word I search for is “deplorable”.) And though I report and block countless accounts daily, each new day brings up more.

By the way, Twitter’s Search function really needs to have a function so it will exclude Tweets from accounts you’ve already blocked. I could be a lot more efficient if Twitter was.

Another way of finding to people to block are the Trends. Click on one of them, and add “deplorable” to the Search, and block away. Did you know a lot of “deplorable” people watch The Walking Dead? I did by searching through the show’s hashtag today.

So what’s on my checklist? Note that while not every person fits every item on the checklist, there will almost always be overlaps. Am I really the kind of bitch who will block someone based on their political persuasion? If they self-identify as “deplorable”, I do. Got a problem with that? Try not being “deplorable”.

Here’s my incomplete checklist, a “profile” of the kind of people I report and block:

-Frog in name, avatar, banner, or hashtag – often referred to as “Pepe”
-“Deplorable”, “MAGA”, “Trump2016”, “NeverHillary”, “TrumpTrain”, etc
-Demands the “freedom” of people Twitter has banned for their continuous abuse of others – such as “FreeMilo”, “FreeRicky”
-Confederate flag
-“ProWhite”, “WhiteGenocide”
-“AmericaFirst”, “I Love America”, “Patriot”
-“Jesus”, “God”, “Christian”
-“AllLivesMatter”, “BlueLivesMatter”
-Uses terms like “kek” and “cuck” as insults
-“1A”, “2A”
-Shares articles from Breitbart, Truthfeed, InfoWars, ZeroHedge
-“No lists”
-Anti-immigration, anti-refugees
-Uses “globalist” as an insult
-Insults women’s appearances; comments on her family, “fuckability”; encourages suicide

I could go on, but I’ve shared enough. And if you think some of the items on the checklist seem harmless, they likely overlap with other items. And some of the items contradict each other, so you likely won’t find them on the same profile. But this is the basic overview of the kind of person who sends abuse to woman on Twitter.

21st October 2016 Releases

Happy Release Day:

M. D. Waters
Gemini’s Edge
M. D. Waters (US: 21st October 2016)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA)

Eden Black isn’t just a kickass assassin. She’s been known to double your trouble, and blow a few minds in the process. Problem is, she’s wanted by the most dangerous race in the known Universe, and that bounty hunter they sent for her? He’s her only weakness.

4 New Covers (Cameron, Morgan, Rossi, Ruby)

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18th October 2016 Releases

Happy Release Day to:

Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff [guest journal illustrations by Marie Lu]
Gemina (Illuminae Files, Book 2)
Random House Knopf (US & CA: 18th October 2016)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

Hanna is the station captain’s pampered daughter; Nik the reluctant member of a notorious crime family. But while the pair are struggling with the realities of life aboard the galaxy’s most boring space station, little do they know that Kady Grant and the Hypatia are headed right toward Heimdall, carrying news of the Kerenza invasion. When an elite BeiTech strike team invades the station, Hanna and Nik are thrown together to defend their home. But alien predators are picking off the station residents one by one, and a malfunction in the station’s wormhole means the space-time continuum might be ripped in two before dinner. Soon Hanna and Nik aren’t just fighting for their own survival; the fate of everyone on the Hypatia – and possibly the known universe – is in their hands. But relax. They’ve totally got this. They hope.

Laurie Faria Stolarz
Disney Hyperion (US: 18th October 2016)
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THE FACTS: • Julian Roman, age sixteen, is an escapee from the Fairmount County Juvenile Detention Facility. • His parents, Michael Roman and Jennifer Roman, are dead. • Julian is wanted for murder. THE QUESTIONS: • Why is Julian Roman on the run? • Just how dangerous is he? • And who did kill Michael and Jennifer Roman, if not Julian? Sixteen-year-old Day Connor views life through the lens of her camera, where perspective is everything. But photographs never tell the whole story. After Day crosses paths with Julian, the world she pictures and the truths she believes – neatly captured in black and white – begin to blur. Julian is not the “armed and dangerous” escapee the police are searching for, but his alibis don’t quite add up, either. There is more to his story. This time, Day is determined to see the entire picture…whatever it reveals. Did he? Or didn’t he? Day digs deeper into the case while Julian remains on the run. But the longer her list of facts becomes, the longer the list of questions becomes, too. It’s also getting harder to deny the chemistry she feels for him. Is it real? Or is she being manipulated? Day is close to finding the crack in the case. She just needs time to focus before the shutter snaps shut.

Carol Lynch Williams
Simon & Schuster Paula Wiseman (US, UK, CA & AU: 18th October 2016)
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Evie Messenger knows that her family is different from other families. But it isn’t until her fifteenth birthday that the Messenger gift is revealed to her. Evie has the family’s gift – a special power. Soon she realizes she is able to see and talk to the dead – ghosts – often with no idea who the person was. Or as Evie says: “I see Dead People. It’s a Messenger gift.” That doesn’t mean she wants the Messenger gift. So Evie tries to ignore it but soon she finds she cannot. Can Evie find a way to live her life without letting her power take over? And what if the dead person is someone close to Evie’s family?

5 New Covers (Armstrong, Clarke, Jones, Vega, Vincent)

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11th October 2016 Releases

Happy Release Day to:

J. M. Kelly
Speed of Life
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (US: 11th October 2016)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

Twins Crystal and Amber have the same goal: to be the first in their family to graduate high school and make something of their lives. When one gets pregnant during their junior year, they promise to raise the baby together. It’s not easy, but between their after-school jobs, they’re scraping by. Crystal’s grades catch the attention of the new guidance counsellor, who tells her about a college that offers a degree in automotive restoration, perfect for the car buff she is. When she secretly applies – and gets in – new opportunities threaten their once-certain plans, and Crystal must make a choice: follow her dreams or stay behind and honour the promise she made to her sister.

Mary G. Thompson
Amy Chelsea Stacie Dee
Penguin G.P. Putnam’s Sons (US & CA: 11th October 2016)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

When sixteen-year-old Amy returns home, she can’t tell her family what’s happened to her. She can’t tell them where she’s been since she and her best friend, her cousin Dee, were kidnapped six years ago – who stole them from their families or what’s become of Dee. She has to stay silent because she’s afraid of what might happen next, and she’s desperate to protect her secrets at any cost. Amy tries to readjust to life at “home,” but nothing she does feels right. She’s a stranger in her own family, and the guilt that she’s the one who returned is insurmountable. Amy soon realizes that keeping secrets won’t change what’s happened, and they may end up hurting those she loves the most. She has to go back in order to move forward, risking everything along the way.