Not a Drop to Drink by Mindy McGinnis

Not a Drop to Drink by Mindy McGinnis

Not a Drop to Drink by Mindy McGinnis book cover

Lynn knows every threat to her pond: drought, a snowless winter, coyotes, and, most importantly, people looking for a drink. She makes sure anyone who comes near the pond leaves thirsty, or doesn’t leave at all.

Confident in her own abilities, Lynn has no use for the world beyond the nearby fields and forest. Having a life means dedicating it to survival, and the constant work of gathering wood and water. Having a pond requires the fortitude to protect it, something Mother taught her well during their quiet hours on the rooftop, rifles in hand.

But wisps of smoke on the horizon mean one thing: strangers. The mysterious footprints by the pond, nighttime threats, and gunshots make it all too clear Lynn has exactly what they want, and they won’t stop until they get it….

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Ableist language
  • Rape, implied and recounted
  • Attempted rape
  • Forced sex work, off-page
  • Child abuse
  • Toxic relationship
  • Intimate partner violence, implied and recounted
  • Suicide, on-page
  • Suicidal ideation
  • Medicinal drug use
  • Pregnancy
  • Childbirth complications, on-page
  • Stillbirth, on-page
  • Blood and gore depiction
  • Dead bodies
  • Graphic physical injuries
  • Physical illness, specifically cholera, seizures and fever
  • Field surgery
  • Serious illness of a loved one
  • Syringes and needles
  • Grief depiction
  • Death of a mother
  • Death of a brother
  • Death of a husband
  • Death of a father
  • Murder and attempted murder
  • Gun and knife violence
  • Torture
  • Hostage situation
  • Kidnapping
  • Blackmail
  • Fire
  • Drought
  • Death from stavation
  • Death from dehydration
  • Death from exposure
  • Mild war themes
  • Ex-soldier, side-character
  • Animal death, on-page
  • Death of a pet
  • Animal cruelty
  • Hunting
  • Animal dead bodies
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To Love and to Loathe by Martha Waters

To Love & to Loathe by Martha Waters

The widowed Diana, Lady Templeton and Jeremy, Marquess of Willingham are infamous among English high society as much for their sharp-tongued bickering as their flirtation. One evening, an argument at a ball turns into a serious wager: Jeremy will marry within the year or Diana will forfeit one hundred pounds. So shortly after, just before a fortnight-long house party at Elderwild, Jeremy’s country estate, Diana is shocked when Jeremy appears at her home with a very different kind of proposition.

After his latest mistress unfavorably criticized his skills in the bedroom, Jeremy is looking for reassurance, so he has gone to the only woman he trusts to be totally truthful. He suggests that they embark on a brief affair while at the house party—Jeremy can receive an honest critique of his bedroom skills and widowed Diana can use the gossip to signal to other gentlemen that she is interested in taking a lover.

Diana thinks taking him up on his counter-proposal can only help her win her wager. With her in the bedroom and Jeremy’s marriage-minded grandmother, the formidable Dowager Marchioness of Willingham, helping to find suitable matches among the eligible ladies at Elderwild, Diana is confident her victory is assured. But while they’re focused on winning wagers, they stand to lose their own hearts.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Cheating mentioned
  • Gambling addiction mentioned
  • Death of a sibling recounted
  • Death of a husband recounted
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The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw

The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw

The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw book cover

Where, two centuries ago, three sisters were sentenced to death for witchery. Stones were tied to their ankles and they were drowned in the deep waters surrounding the town.

Now, for a brief time each summer, the sisters return, stealing the bodies of three weak-hearted girls so that they may seek their revenge, luring boys into the harbor and pulling them under.

Like many locals, seventeen-year-old Penny Talbot has accepted the fate of the town. But this year, on the eve of the sisters’ return, a boy named Bo Carter arrives; unaware of the danger he has just stumbled into.

Mistrust and lies spread quickly through the salty, rain-soaked streets. The townspeople turn against one another. Penny and Bo suspect each other of hiding secrets. And death comes swiftly to those who cannot resist the call of the sisters.

But only Penny sees what others cannot. And she will be forced to choose: save Bo, or save herself.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Ableist language
  • Slut-shaming
  • Misogyny
  • Persecution for witchcraft
  • Sexual assault, specifically non-consensual kiss
  • Rape by coercion*
  • Unspecified mental health/illness
  • Suicide discussed and on-page
  • Self-sacrifice
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Physical injuries mentioned
  • Dead bodies
  • Grief depiction
  • Death of a brother
  • Death of a father
  • Death of a husband
  • Death of a fiance
  • Death of a son
  • Murder
  • Kidnapping
  • Drowning, central theme, multiple on-page occurrences and recounted scenes
  • Fire

*Main character lies to her love interest about her identity, leading them to have sex (on-page)

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The Conductors by Nicole Glover

The Conductors by Nicole Glover

The Conductors by Nicole Glover book cover

As a conductor on the Underground Railroad, Hetty Rhodes helped usher dozens of people north with her wits and magic. Now that the Civil War is over, Hetty and her husband Benjy have settled in Philadelphia, solving murders and mysteries that the white authorities won’t touch. When they find one of their friends slain in an alley, Hetty and Benjy bury the body and set off to find answers. But the secrets and intricate lies of the elites of Black Philadelphia only serve to dredge up more questions. To solve this mystery, they will have to face ugly truths all around them, including the ones about each other.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Racism
  • Colourism
  • Domestic abuse & violence
  • Infertility themes
  • Miscarriage, mentioned
  • Pregnancy, mentioned
  • Scars
  • Physical injury, including burns
  • Blood and gore depiction
  • Death of a mother
  • Death of a father
  • Death of a friend
  • Death of a husband
  • Death of a sister
  • Death of a son
  • Disappearance of a sister
  • Knife violence
  • Fire
  • Torture
  • Kidnapping
  • Incarceration, mentioned
  • Slavery
  • Captivity
  • Human trafficking
  • Hanging/lynching, implied
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Watch Us Rise by Renée Watson and Ellen Hagan

Watch Us Rise by Renée Watson & Ellen Hagan

Jasmine and Chelsea are sick of the way women are treated even at their progressive NYC high school, so they decide to start a Women’s Rights Club. They post everything online—poems, essays, videos of Chelsea performing her poetry, and Jasmine’s response to the racial macroaggressions she experiences—and soon they go viral. But with such positive support, the club is also targeted by online trolls. When things escalate, the principal shuts the club down. Jasmine and Chelsea will risk everything for their voices—and those of other young women—to be heard.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Ableism & ableist language
  • Fatmisia & body shaming
  • Sexism
  • Racism, including cultural appropriation & anti-Blackness
  • Sexual harassment
  • Grey-area cheating
  • Death of a parent to cancer
  • Hospital
  • Grief & loss depiction
  • Death of a father & husband
  • Bullying
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Sadie by Courtney Summers

Sadie by Courtney Summers

Sadie by Courtney Summers book cover

A missing girl on a journey of revenge. A Serial―like podcast following the clues she’s left behind. And an ending you won’t be able to stop talking about.

Sadie hasn’t had an easy life. Growing up on her own, she’s been raising her sister Mattie in an isolated small town, trying her best to provide a normal life and keep their heads above water.

But when Mattie is found dead, Sadie’s entire world crumbles. After a somewhat botched police investigation, Sadie is determined to bring her sister’s killer to justice and hits the road following a few meager clues to find him.

When West McCray―a radio personality working on a segment about small, forgotten towns in America―overhears Sadie’s story at a local gas station, he becomes obsessed with finding the missing girl. He starts his own podcast as he tracks Sadie’s journey, trying to figure out what happened, hoping to find her before it’s too late.

Courtney Summers has written the breakout book of her career. Sadie is propulsive and harrowing and will keep you riveted until the last page.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Ableism
  • Child sexual abuse and rape, central theme but no explicit details given
  • Paedophilia
  • Child pornography
  • Sex work
  • Child neglect
  • Parental abandonment
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Flashbacks
  • Disordered eating, mentioned
  • Suicide attempt
  • Unintentional self-harm
  • Substance addiction and abuse
  • Alcoholism and alcohol consumption
  • Recreational drug use
  • Overdose, mentioned
  • Pregnancy, mentioned
  • Graphic blood depiction
  • Hospitalisation
  • Serious physical illness
  • Physical injury
  • Emesis
  • Terminal cancer, mentioned
  • Grief depiction
  • Death of a sister
  • Death of a child
  • Death of a grandmother
  • Death of a husband, mentioned
  • Murder
  • Physical assault
  • Knife violence
  • Fire
  • Economic depression
  • Disappearance of a loved one
  • Hostage situation
  • Stalking
  • Car accident
  • Bullying, recounted
  • Homelessness
  • Poverty themes
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Out by Natsuo Kirino

Out by Natsuo Kirino

Natsuo Kirino’s novel tells a story of random violence in the staid Tokyo suburbs, as a young mother who works a night shift making boxed lunches brutally strangles her deadbeat husband and then seeks the help of her co-workers to dispose of the body and cover up her crime.

The ringleader of this cover-up, Masako Katori, emerges as the emotional heart of Out and as one of the shrewdest, most clear-eyed creations in recent fiction. Masako’s own search for a way out of the straitjacket of a dead-end life leads her, too, to take drastic action.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Rape
  • Domestic violence
  • Blood & gore depiction and body horror
  • Death of a husband
  • Murder
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All This I Will Give to You

All This I Will Give to You by Dolores Redondo

When novelist Manuel Ortigosa learns that his husband, Álvaro, has been killed in a car crash, it comes as a devastating shock. It won’t be the last. He’s now arrived in Galicia. It’s where Álvaro died. It’s where the case has already been quickly closed as a tragic accident. It’s also where Álvaro hid his secrets.

Álvaro’s trail leads Manuel deep into one of Spain’s most powerful and guarded families. Behind the walls of their forbidding estate, Manuel is nothing but an unwelcome and dangerous intruder. Then he finds two allies: a stubbornly suspicious police lieutenant and Álvaro’s old friend–and private confessor–from seminary school. Together they’re collecting the pieces of Álvaro’s past, his double life, and his mysterious death.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Grief & loss depiction
  • Death of a husband
  • Car accident recounted
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Clap When You Land

Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo

Camino Rios lives for the summers when her father visits her in the Dominican Republic. But this time, on the day when his plane is supposed to land, Camino arrives at the airport to see crowds of crying people…

In New York City, Yahaira Rios is called to the principal’s office, where her mother is waiting to tell her that her father, her hero, has died in a plane crash.

Separated by distance – and Papi’s secrets – the two girls are forced to face a new reality in which their father is dead and their lives are forever altered. And then, when it seems like they’ve lost everything of their father, they learn of each other.

Papi’s death uncovers all the painful truths he kept hidden, and the love he divided across an ocean. And now, Camino and Yahaira are both left to grapple with what this new sister means to them, and what it will now take to keep their dreams alive.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Coming out themes
  • Sexual harassment
  • Sexual assault of a minor recounted & attempted rape of a minor (on-page)
  • Sex trafficking & coerced sex work of a minor discussed
  • Cheating
  • Pregnancy discussed
  • Premature childbirth scene & resuscitation of a newborn
  • Emesis
  • Cancer mentioned (minor secondary character)
  • Grief & loss depiction
  • Death of a mother from dengue fever recounted
  • Death of a father & husband (central theme)
  • Death of a sister mentioned
  • Stalking
  • Plane crash (off-page but discussed throughout the novel)
  • Poverty themes
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