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My Fave Reads of February and March

Stone Soup Digest 04.20.2024
My Fave Reads of February and March
Photo by Syd Wachs / Unsplash

Welcome to the Stone Soup Weekly Digest! This is where I share what I'm up to and some of my favorite things from around the internet. Subscribe to Stone Soup to get this in your inbox every week.

You may have noticed that it is mid-April! The Stone Soup schedule is a little zesty lately, but that’s okay, because we’re here now, together, in the intro section, and isn’t that what really matters? Togetherness is so much more important than things like “looking at what day it is” and “recognizing the passage of time”. In this week’s digest, you’ll find some of my favorite reads of the past couple of months. You’ll also find some things I’m really amped up about from around the internet! 

Before we dive in, though, I’m going to remind you that the current genocide of Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank has been escalating and ongoing for the past 196 days and shows no signs of stopping or slowing down. At least 34,000 people have been killed, including around 14,000 children. You have neighbors around the world who need you to show up as best you can right now, today. Situations like this one always feel hopeless and helpless – that is the nature of immense suffering – but you can help. Here are some ways you can show up:

Do Better to Be Better: The Feast Makers by August Clarke

This week’s Stories About Stories feature spotlights the team behind The Feast Makers by August Clarke! Getting to interview this team led to some of my absolute favorite insights about the industry, the world, and the way books get made. 

“Repair is better than redemption. It's a goofy semantic difference maybe, but redemption strikes me as something that impacts the kind of person you are, while repair is something you do. I think we are what we do. We are together within systems that instruct us to hurt each other and ourselves, and the only way to do otherwise is to learn and try and keep trying even if we fuck up, and help each other do the same. Do better to be better.”

Have You Eaten?

In case you missed it, I have a new novella out! Have You Eaten is about queer dirtbags on the run, searching for their missing best friend. It's the story of how they nurture and nourish each other with their limited emotional and material resources. You can now read the ENTIRE THING, for free, at Reactor! 


Friend of the newsletter, Brandon Crilly, has a fun-as-hell new game out!

Remain unseen. Accomplish the mission. Promote snake advocacy.

No one sees them. No one talks to them. Leave a message in the right place, give it a few days, and the thing you need will be waiting on your desk or doorstep. The Bureau of Agents never fails.

It must be government drones. Or ninjas. Or elves.

But you know the truth.

B.O.A. is just a bunch of snakes.

B.O.A. is a rules-light TTRPG about a super-secret agency populated and run entirely by SNAKES. Inspired by games like Honey Heist and Raccoon Sky Pirates, B.O.A. folds everything awesome about these misunderstood creatures into a snake-tastic game of covert ops. Go check it out!

A Comic about COVID safety

I absolutely love this concise, thorough, thoughtful comic explaining safety protocols to help keep yourself and other safe during the ongoing spread and mutation of COVID-19. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, confused about what is or isn’t safe, or just want a refresher on personal protective equipment, this is well worth your time. 


Authors Against Book Bans is an organization uniting writers to fight the rising tide of literary censorship. To get involved, support their work, or learn more about book banning, check out their website and be sure to sign up for their newsletter, which always includes incredibly helpful tools and resources!.

My Favorite Reads from February and March

Metal From Heaven by August Clarke

He who controls ichorite controls the world.

A malleable metal more durable than steel, ichorite is a toxic natural resource fueling national growth, and ambitious industrialist Yann Chauncey helms production of this miraculous ore. Working his foundry is an underclass of destitute workers, struggling to get better wages and proper medical treatment for those exposed to ichorite’s debilitating effects since birth.

One of those luster-touched victims, the child worker Marney Honeycutt, is picketing with her family and best friend when a bloody tragedy unfolds. Chauncey’s strikebreakers open fire.

Only Marney survives.

A decade later, as Yann Chauncey searches for a suitable political marriage for his ward, Marney sees the perfect opportunity for revenge. With the help of radical bandits and their stolen wealth, she must masquerade as an aristocrat to win over the calculating Gossamer Chauncey and kill the man who slaughtered her family and friends. But she is not the only suitor after Lady Gossamer’s hand, leading her to play twisted elitist games of intrigue. And Marney’s luster-touched connection to the mysterious resource and its foundry might put her in grave danger – or save her from it. 

Breakneck, saturated, furious

The Devil in Silver by Victor LaValle

Pepper is the surprised inmate of a mental institution in Queens, New York. In the darkness of his room, on his first night, a terrifying creature with the body of an old man and the head of a bison nearly kills him before being hustled away by the hospital staff. It's no delusion: The other patients confirm that a devil roams the hallways when the sun goes down. Pepper rallies three other inmates in a plot to kill the monster that's stalking them. But can the Devil die? 

Wild, thoughtful, surreal

Model Home by Rivers Solomon

The three Maxwell siblings keep their distance from the lily-white gated enclave outside Dallas where they grew up. When their family moved there, they were the only Black family in the neighborhood. The neighbors acted nice enough, but right away bad things, scary things--the strange and the unexplainable--began to happen in their house. Maybe it was some cosmic trial, a demonic rite of passage into the upper-middle class. Whatever it was, the Maxwells, steered by their formidable mother, stayed put, unwilling to abandon their home, terrors and trauma be damned.

As adults, the siblings could finally get away from the horrors of home, leaving their parents all alone in the house. But when news of their parents' death arrives, Ezri is forced to return to Texas with their sisters, Eve and Emanuelle, to reckon with their family's past and present, and to find out what happened while they were away. It was not a "natural" death for their parents . . . but was it supernatural?

Rivers Solomon turns the haunted-house story on its head, unearthing the dark legacies of segregation and racism in the suburban American South. Unbridled, raw, and daring, Model Home is the story of secret histories uncovered, and of a queer family battling for their right to live, grieve, and heal amid the terrors of contemporary American life. 

Terrifying, haunting, kind

A Guest in the House by Emily Carroll

After many lonely years, Abby's just gotten married. She met her new husband--a recently widowed dentist--when he arrived in town with his young daughter, seeking a new start. Although it's strange living in the shadow of her predecessor, Abby does her best to be a good wife and mother. But the more she learns about her new husband's first wife, the more things don't add up. And Abby starts to wonder . . . was Sheila's death really by natural causes? As Abby sinks deeper into confusion, Sheila's memory seems to become a force all its own, ensnaring Abby in a mystery that leaves her obsessed, fascinated, and desperately in love for the first time in her life.

Emily's masterful balance of black and white, surreal colors, rich textures, and dramatic lettering is assured to bring this story to life and give readers a chill up their spine as they read. 

Harrowing, gorgeous, startling

Captain America: Symbol of Truth by Tochi Onyebuchi, Mattia De Iulis, R.B. Silva, Jesus Aburtov, and Vc Joe Caramagna

Captain America soars again in a new era for truth and liberty! The world is finally ready for two Caps, so Sam Wilson picks up a shield once more - and enters a world of trouble! Following a lead from Misty Knight, Sam intercepts a mysterious group hijacking what appears to be an empty train. But as Sam and his partner, the new Falcon, dig deeper, they discover that this plot may be connected to a crucial piece of Captain America history - and, surprisingly, to the nation of Wakanda! But how is Deadpool involved?! To find answers, Sam Wilson and Wade Wilson must team up in Latveria - and you know what that means! When Doctor Doom learns of the interlopers in his midst, can Cap escape with his life?

Action-packed, thrilling, insightful

Currently Reading+Featured New Release: Pretty Furious by E.K. Johnston

In the small town of Eganston, Ontario, five good girls have had enough. They’ve experienced the best of what their community has to offer, but they’ve seen the darker side too. Together, they’ve decided that it’s time for a reckoning and that justice is their privilege to give.   

Barnes & Noble | Bad River Website | Local Library | Find an Indie Bookstore

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