We Ride Upon Sticks by Quan Barry/A Review

We Ride Upon Sticks by Quan Barry
Publisher: Pantheon Books
Length: 362 pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
Release Date: March 3, 2020
ARC acquired through publisher

It’s 1989, and the Danvers High School Women’s Field Hockey team is staring down another losing season. But things start to look up when the team’s goalie discovers a book that will change both the course of the season as well as each player’s life.
FACT: In 1692, a handful of young girls, interested in divining the nature of their futures, brought devastating consequences to what was then known as Salem Village. FACT: Three hundred years later, Salem Village is now the Town of Danvers, and these teen girls are just as wily and original as their ancestors. If hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, then Boston’s north shore is about to discover what lengths eleven teen girls will go to win a state championship, uncovering their true selves and bucking convention along the way. We Ride Upon Sticks and Are There Presently presents a portrait of teen girl-dom in all its furious messiness, from big hair to Heathers to coming into one’s glorious own despite society’s stale notions of femininity.

My Thoughts:

When I first heard about We Ride Upon Sticks, I was immediately drawn towards the plot of a women’s hockey team thriving under the influence of supernatural power. The fact that the story is set right in the heart of a region rich in witchcraft added on to my interest in the tale. I’m so thankful for Pantheon Books for providing me with an ARC of this book!

We Ride Upon Sticks follows the lows and steady rise of the Danvers High School Falcons, an all-female hockey team suffering struggles until some supernatural help befalls on these women one summer. The triumphs the team experiences are sudden, but these women are also handling the pressures of senior year in high school. The friendships and dramas that befall girls approaching the crossroads of adulthood can bring about its own stresses. Each of the women described in We Ride Upon Sticks fit the mold of an ‘It Girl’, ‘The Leader’, ‘The Mousey-yet-assertive’ types that we’ve all seen in our high school days. Ushering in an extra dose of supernatural, ‘witchy’ abilities bring about unexpected surprises that takes us for a ride as the story progresses.

We Ride Upon Sticks is set in the 1980s, which I very much appreciated! I love reading historical fiction tales, and while I was just a child in the 80s, many of the references brought a smile to my face (I loved ‘The Bangles’ and ‘Duran Duran’ musical references, to name a few!). The tension in the story was also presented in the style reminiscent to 1980s storytelling (I can only describe it as events take place in a slow-but-steady pace, keeping me focused!

I enjoyed We Ride Upon Sticks, as it exemplifies the power of women coming together to survive and thrive while enduring the trials of adolescence, and having supernatural abilities on your side. If you love stories rich in female friendship with a hint of magic, then this is the book for you!

Rating: 4/5 Stars

March 2020 TBR

Happy 1st day of March! The days of Winter are nearly behind us!

I’ve yet to put out my February Wrap-Up post, and I will have that up very soon. For now, these are the reads that I’ll be reading during March!

We Ride Upon Sticks and Are There Presently by Quan Barry

I received a complimentary copy of this novel from Pantheon Books. Since this book comes out on March 3rd, I’ll have my review posted within the week!

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

This novel is the March selection at my local library’s book club! I’ve heard so much about Where the Crawdads Sing, so I can’t wait to learn why it’s so popular!

Out of the Embers by Amanda Cabot

I received a complimentary copy of Out of the Ashes from Revell Reads. It sounds like a romantic suspense novel set in the countryside. I’m curious to see what happens!

I’m sure I’ll add more to this list, but these are the selections are definitely a ‘must read’ for March!

What books are on your TBR list this month?

Friday Reads: February 28

I’m reading two books this week. I’m nearly finished with ‘The Other People’ by C.J. Tudor. I’m enjoying the twists and turns this story has taken me on! I’m anticipating the wrap up video Kayla (@booksandlala) will present next month about the book!

Today I begun reading ‘We Ride Upon Sticks’ by Quan Barry. I received a complimentary copy of the book from Pantheon Books. So far I enjoy the mini history of Salem, MA, and its significance for the women’s hockey team in this tale. I hope to have my review up by Tuesday!

ARC Book Haul

This week I received two ARCs! One is a Historical Fiction, and the other is a Romantic Suspense novel. I would also like to add that these two are my first physical ARCs! I’m so excited!

We Ride Upon Sticks by Quan Barry
From the author of the widely acclaimed She Weeps Each Time You’re Born, a comic tour de female force about a 1980s field hockey team.

In the coastal town of Danvers, MA, home of the original 1692 witch trials, the 1989 Danvers Falcons will do anything to make it to the state finals — even if it means tapping into some devilishly dark powers. In chapters dense with ’80s iconography–from Heathers to “big hair”–Quan Barry expertly weaves together the individual and collective journeys of this enchanted team as they storm their way to the championship. Helmed by good-girl captain Abby Putnam (a descendant of the infamous Salem accuser Ann Putnam) and her co-captain Jen Fiorenza, whose bleached blond “Claw” sees and knows all, the DHS Falcons prove to be wily, original, and bold, flaunting society’s stale notions of femininity in order to find their glorious true selves through the crucible of team sport and, more importantly, friendship.

I received this ARC from Penguin Random House and Pantheon Books (thank you for the copy!). The moment I first came across We Ride Upon Sticks, I knew that I wanted to learn more. A novel covering a female sports team trying to become successful in the 80s sounds very riveting to me. The face that it also involves supernatural powers is a definite plus! We Ride Upon Sticks is scheduled to come out during March 2020.

Deadly Deceit (Harbored Secrets #2) by Natalie Waters
When journalist Vivian DeMarco’s boss dies under suspicious circumstances, her only hope for finding the truth is Deputy Ryan Frost. The deeper they dig, the more twisted the truth becomes, and someone called The Watcher forces Vivian to decide what she’s willing to lose for the sake of a headline.

I received a copy of Deadly Deceit from Revell Books, as part of a blogger tour stop coming soon (thank you for the complimentary copy!). Although I haven’t read Book 1, I’m hopeful that I won’t need it to get into this story! Deadly Deceit comes out on November 5th.