Happy 6th day of Chanukah!
I realize I have not actually said anything about Chanukah, so here are some facts:
1) The Jewish day begins at night, which is the reason I keep starting these giveaways at around 4:30 EST – that’s when sundown is here in NYC.
2) You might wonder why some people spell it Hanukkah and some Chanukah, or various variations on those. The difference there is between Hebrew and English. The Hebrew word “Chanukah” (which, by the way, means “dedication”) indeed begins with a gutteral “ch/kh” sound, which does not have an English equivalent. As such, the anglicized version of the word, which can be pronounced by any English speaker, is “Hanukkah.” I, however, speak Hebrew, and when I talk about the holiday, I refer to it with its Hebrew pronunciation.
3) The actual story of Chanukah is probably something you should just Google, but the focus is on two big miracles – a small Jewish army beating a larger Greek one, and oil that should’ve only been enough for one day lasting for eight. (Hence why Chanukah is eight days long.) The oil is the reason we celebrate in part by eating fried foods, which for some reason ended up being latkes (potato pancakes) and jelly doughnuts. No idea where the jelly part came from.
OKAY, now that that lesson’s over, let’s talk about today’s giveaway! It comes in the form of an ARC from Katie Cotugno, and it’s for her sophomore novel, 99 Days. It is a horribly kept secret that How to Love, Katie’s debut, was one of my favorite YAs of 2013, and so much of what I loved about that first book is replicated here, in an entirely new story.
Because the magic of Katie Cotugno’s writing is this: She captures the most flawed, emotional, human sides of gray morality. We don’t always get to control whether we forgive someone; sometimes, you just love someone so much you can’t help it. We can’t always control who we love. We can’t always say no to things just because we know we should, because we know it’s right. Those are things I still feel at 30; I sure as hell felt them at 17.
If you have zero tolerance for cheating or love triangles, this isn’t your book. But if you want to see them handled deftly, thoughtfully, and honestly, put this book on your TBR, stat.
As with all 8 Days of Chanukah giveaways, this is international and the winner will be selected on January 1. And of course, it comes with a bookmark, in this case one belonging to another of my favorite 2015 books, also from Balzer + Bray!