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Swoonscopes: Shine Bright Like a Leo

Make like the Little Mermaid and emerge from the waves of Cancer season to bask under the sun and the warm rays of Leo season. Taking place at the height of summer, from mid-July to mid-August, Leo season is all about shining brightly, soaking up adoration and praise, and letting the world know that you're here, that you've arrived! (Even if you're still safely at home, this is still possible for the creative Leo via social media and flamboyant Zoom calls.) 

Just like their ruling planet, Jupiter, Leos will be the first to tell you: they're a Big. Freaking. Deal. Leos are natural leaders, full of action and motion. They usually sashay into any meeting or get together with a fierce outfit, flawless hair (think of their symbol, the lion, and a lion's majestic mane), and a bold statement falling from their lips. Even the most introverted of Leos will feel the pull during Leo season to put forth a claim for their behind-the-scenes awesomeness, and to be honest, it's what she deserves! False modesty is out, advocating for yourself and your achievements are in, now and forever (no one likes false modesty, anyway). 

That said, beware of the bossy, selfish Leos out there. These are the folks who don't care who they piss off or push aside, unwilling to share the spotlight, even in those instances in which they don't deserve it. Just reach deep for your own inner Leo and roar back at them—a Leo might not like it, but they'll respect it as a boss move. 

Here are some books that embody BLE (Big Leo Energy) for you to dive into:

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Internet Famous by Danika Stone

Madison Nakama is the internet's It Girl. Her pop-culture rewatch site? Popping. Her social media posts? Viral. And, the cherry on top, her fame has gotten her the attention and affections of Laurent, a fellow geek and super hot exchange student (from France! Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen wish). 

But, as we all know, being online has a price, and Madison and Laurent's romance, chronicled in the comment section of her posts, have made the trolls come running, one in particular. Combined with her offline life combusting, Madi feels like everything is crashing down around her. But can Madi tap into her friends around the globe to beat the troll, or will he end up driving her away from the space she loves so much? 

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Lifestyles of Gods and Monsters by Emily Roberson 

Nobody, not the Real Housewives, not even the Kardashians, can beat the Greek gods when it comes to drama (another cornerstone of Leo culture). But luckily, in this fun novel, you don't have to choose between Bravo and mythology, because author Emily Roberson has smartly combined them to showcase *Hannah Montana voice* the best of both worlds (fun fact: while HM wasn't a Leo, she is also a fire sign).

The premise is this: Every angle of 16-year-old Ariadne's life is cut, curated, and filtered before it's shared with the world. Her royal family's entertainment empire is a tabloid darling, and nearly synonymous with social media. The biggest moneymaker of them all? The Labyrinth Contest that's part Real World, part Hunger Games, in which Ariadne leads a group of teens through a maze to kill a monster. Winning equals glory, and losing equals death. Is it any surprise that in ten seasons, no one's ever succeeded? 

For those familiar with the Minotaur myth, you can guess what happens when gorgeous, mysterious Theseus swaggers into the competition—he gets cozy with Ariadne, and she starts falling for him, too. But is he just using her to help him win and boost ratings? Does Ariadne even care when their chemistry is just that good? Maybe if she helps him win, the contest would end for good and she can keep Theseus, too. But if Theseus lives, that means that the monster dies, and, as Ariadne realizes, the monster might be the only innocent one of them all. 

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You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson

Liz Lighty is just trying to make it to graduation: in her small midwestern town of Campbell, Indiana, she's always thought that she's too Black, too poor, and too awkward to fit in, so why bother trying? Better to make plans to get out by attending the elite Pennington College, playing in their orchestra, and becoming a doctor. 

But her dreams are under siege when the financial aid she planned for falls through, and, desperate, Liz is reminded of her school's scholarship for prom royalty. Liz has always ignored the ultra-competitive prom shenanigans, but she refuses to give up, so she figures she'll endure the social media bullying, catty competitors, and humiliating public events, despite her aversion to being the center of attention. 

New girl Mack is the only thing helping Liz keep afloat: she's smart, funny, and also an outsider. There's just one problem: Mack's also running for prom queen. Will Liz's journey to prom queen keep Liz from her dreams or make them come true? 

That's it from me! See you in Virgo season. 

Author spotlight

Melissa C.

School & Library marketer by day. Hockey fan & tarot card reader by night. Scorpio all the time.

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