I know i'm late. Sigh. But that's okay because I'm posting it now anyway. I only read 53 books this year which might not seem like a lot to some people, but to that's 20 more books than I read last year as well as the previous one. My goal was fifty and I accomplished thank the laaawd.
Weirdly enough, I had a hard time choosing more than five books. I read a lot of good books and only a handful of great (probably less than a handful actually. let's be real) ones, but I don't know. When I went through my list, I just couldn't choose. Some books though blew me out of the water and made my favorite all time books list.
Anyway without further ado, here's the list. I'm also adding a few series that I've read and counting them as one book because I can. The list is in no particular order except alphabetically :).
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
First off, this book was absolutely beautiful. The writing was beautiful, the story line was beautiful, the growth of the characters was beautiful, and the ending was fracking amazing. I cried to it that's how good it was. I'm actually not a fan of books like this though (perks being an example and god did I hate that book despite the excitement I had building up before reading it) and I tend to stay from books in the contemporary (realistic fiction?) genre. But I saw that it had a slight LGBT theme and I just had to. I didn't care that it wasn't something I usually read, I just had to.
And damn it I'm so glad that I did.
Briefly explaining what it is about. It takes place mid-80's, about two Mexican teenagers essentially finding themselves. It's told in Aristotle's P.O.V from the day he meets Dante and the growth in friendship that happens after that. To me, there was so specific plot. The message this book gives was so powerful that to me that was the plot.
God. It was was just soooooo beautiful. I tell everyone that read/wants to read Perks that they should read this one instead.
The Assassin's Curse & The Pirates Wish by Cassandra Rose Clarke
What's better than a magic wielding assassin that is sent to kill a bad ass female Pirate? At the given moment, I have no answer.
Ananna-the pirate-is to be wed off to another pirate clan but she does not want to and runs away.The clan she is supposed to marrying into sends Naji-the assassin-after her, but due to some unfortunate events, they are cursed and bound together. Naji is cursed to protect Ananna and the only way to break the curse is to accomplish three impossible tasks.
I was sold on these books the minute I heard pirates. This duology was so intriguing (especially since I started it when I was on my 'historical' fiction reading binge) and all the characters were so sassy and awesome. The romance in these books deserves an A+. The growth of their relationship was so well written, despite that the fact that it wasn't an in your face romance. The romance happens in book two which I thought was different in a good way. The adventure aspect of the book overshadows the romance with I really enjoyed.
However, I'm almost positive that the publishing company to these books has closed down, so if you're interested in these books, get them now before they're all gone!
Cress by Marissa Meyer
Cinder will still forever be my favorite, but I enjoyed Cress 10000x more than Scarlet. (Even though I could have done with the only main character being Cinder and Kai....)
Anyway, most of you already know that this is the third installment to the Lunar Chronicles and this book focuses mainly (though the other Cinder and Scarlet still have their moments) on Cress, the retelling of Rapunzel if she was a Lunar stuck on a space pod. (Unfortunately I can't remember the exact name of where Cress lived.)
I love the world these books are set in and how Marissa Meyer describes everything was just so good.(I think I need to find more words than just good and enjoyable.) The characters in this one great, especially Captain Thorne. I was glad there was more of him in this book. Cress was also such a cute character. She fangirled over Captain Thorne. I mean... I would too.
I especially loved it when Cinder and Kai finally met up again. Sigh. Does anyone else listen to kpop and imagine Prince Kai as Kai from EXO because I do.
These books are just so much fun and compelling that it really is a must read.
The Covenant Series by Jennifer L. Armentrout.
Well really only the first four books and the two novellas as I'm currently reading the last one. This series has officially sold me on the author and I must read all her books. Seriously. I will be doing another post on this series once I'm finished but in short, this is one of my favorite series of all times.
It's based around Greek gods who have mated with mortals creating demigods and their (demigods) pure blood children called the Hematoi and the Half Bloods, children of the Hematoi and mortals. The story is told from the half blood Alex's P.O.V and the things she has to deal after her mom was killed by an evil Hematoi or Daimon as their referred to in the book.
Alex was one bad ass character and Seth and Aiden were awesome love interests and like I said, I'll be making another post soon so I don't have to ramble about this series right now.
The Curse Workers trilogy by Holly Black
(Though I have the original covers of the first two...I prefer these more)
This was the first series I've read by her as well as my first more mature male p.o.v. I found this series to be really interesting and I loved the way Holly Black writes.
First off, the main character's name is Cassel Sharpe and he lives in a world where curse working is illegal. Curse working in a way is a form of magic that some people can do like, one of his brother's can erase memories and his mom can manipulate emotions, his grandfather can kill people etc. However, there is always a blowback when someone curse works. His mother went crazy, his brother is losing his memories and has to write everything down, and his grandfather is losing his fingers.
Everyone in his family can do some type of curse work, except him. He feels like the outcast of the family because he can't do anything special and he's not into conning people like his family is. He has a messed up life because his mom's a famous con artist and his brothers aren't the greatest and there's also the fact that he is under the impression that he killed his best friend. He becomes haunted with memories of her and that night.
The first book actually starts off with him sleep walking onto his school's roof after being lured by a white cat. I was sold on the series with that first chapter.
I really enjoyed reading about the art of how to con people and Cassel's p.o.v as well. The plot to this story was very different and flew through them.
Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell.
This was my second Rainbow Rowell book and it just made me want to read more. I already loved her writing from reading Fangirl but hoooooommmg it made me love it even more. This book again was so beautifully written I literally couldn't put this book down. I did a harry potter to this and read it under my blanket at night with a flashlight, that's how much I loved it. Eleanor and Park's relationship was just beautiful and I cried so much when they finally got together to when shit hit the fan and at the end. I wasn't the hugest fan of the ending but in a way, I also loved it. It was the perfect way to end it.
This book also showcases character growth with Park, the male protagonist. At the beginning of the book, Eleanor was the laughing stock of the school. She was new, looked different, and came from a poor family. Park was the typical teen, with popular friends and a good home life. On Eleanor's first day of school, the only seat available was next to Park and at first he didn't want to let her sit next to him because not only was everyone already laughing at her, he thought she looked like a mess. He obviously did anyway and it becomes a routine every morning for her to sit next to him and then eventually they start talking and he gets to know her and just ugh. The feels. He starts to realize what he did was wrong and how messed up his friends are and how appreciative he is of his family and what not. Ugh. More feels.
This book was so sad and so good that everyone needs to read it.
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell.
Yet another book by her. What a surprise. Not really. I need to read her other books. I have yet to get them but hopefully this month I will.
The story is about twin sisters Cath and Wren who are off to college. The two were very close growing up yet when they get to college, Wren wants to go separate ways and do her own thing, leaving Cath to basically fend for herself. She did everything with her sister and not having her right next to her sets her a little off.
Cath was so relatable because like a majority of people she is a fangirl (heh) and writes Simon Snow-which is based off of Harry Potter-fanfiction which plays a huge role in her life and I absolutely loved the little snippets of the book with the actual fanfiction of Simon and Baz. She also has to deal with a new and strange environment and I know what she felt like when she at a new school and having to make friends. There's this scene where her roommate asks her if she knew where the cafeteria was and Catch says no, which actually happened to me. In 11th grade, I never stepped foot into my new school's cafeteria.
Levi was also an awesome and funny love interest. I would get so excited when he showed up.
This book made me feel all warm and fuzzy. It was adorable and a must read for all fangirls like myself.
Ink & Rain by Amanda Sun
Once I found out that these books were set in Japan-I was sold. It's no secret I really enjoy anything that has to do with Japan (I'll save that story for another day) and once I read the plot I just knew I had to read them. And my god did I enjoy these books, though not many people actually did. I guess some people thought they were too typical YA or JDrama-ish.
This story follows Katie, an American, who had to move to Japan and live with her aunt after her mom passes away. There she has to deal with being a foreigner, learning a new language, and a new way of living with new customs and different food. There she meets a Tomo, a typical J-Drama bad boy, as he's breaking up with his girlfriend. But while that's happening, she sees something strange. She sees his artwork move. Things progress from their when his abilities start to go out of whack and the two try to find answers.
I loved Tomo's and Katie's relationship too and how that progressed. One of my favorite literary couples right there. There was the immediate attraction to one another (not instalove) but the Tomo's abilities were reacting to Katie in a bad way so they had to stay away from each other. I'm a sucker for forbidden romance, sue me.
The way Amanda Sun wrote about Japan shows just how much she loves the country as well and the words she used to describe everything was authentic. It wasn't like someone just threw words in there and tried to write about something they didn't know about.
Also the art was an A+. There were pages showing Tomo's art and I really liked that.
These books made me want to visit Japan and learn the language even more.
Legend by Marie Lu
This is the only dystopian book that I like. Really. It was the first book I read of that particular genre that didn't have a boring plot.
We've got June, The Republic's Prodigy, and Day, The Republic's most wanted criminal. June's brother is murdered and Day is blamed and in order to capture him, June goes under cover and finds Day and shit hits the fan afterwards.
For one, the characters were great. I love characters like June-if that wasn't obvious-where she is a very strong female lead. Smart, knows how to defend herself, doesn't take any crap.
And on top of that, the actual plot to the story was amazing. There's a plague that goes around the city and how that was interwoven into the plot and what's really going on with the Republic and the warring Colonies was so good that I finished this book in two days.
The only thing that I wasn't a fan of was the romance, but it was such a minuscule thing that was forgiven because the actual plot was so amazing.
Saga by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples
I'm pretty sure everyone and their mom has heard about this graphic novel. But can I say I read this without the persuasion of booktube. Booktube always makes me read stuff that I do not like. Why I insist on listening to them, I will never know.
This was my first graphic novel I've read that wasn't manga and holy crap! It was sooooo good. It's about Alana and Marco who come from warring planets-except that Marco comes from a moon. Alana is a soldier and Marco gets captured with Alana having to watch over him. Within the span of (what i believe) is 24 hours, the two run away together.
The story actually starts with Alana giving birth to their daughter and the story is actually told in her-the daughter's-p.o.v
I absolutely love the universe, the characters, the art style, the story line. Everything. To me there is literally nothing wrong with this series. Some people might think it's a bit graphic...which it is. Only for 18+ eyes only. Regardless, it's so good and if you're going to read a graphic novel, start with these.
Shadow Falls series by C.C Hunter
I've never actually heard anyone talk about this series before and when I picked up the first one day I didn't have very high hopes.
I was mistaken.
The writing of these books was meh and the romance got a bit annoying, but I was still thoroughly into these books that I read all of them in the same month. The actual plot and how it developed was really good.
It's starts off with Kylie, and her arguing parents. They're getting a divorce and Kylie takes it hard so for some reason Kylie's mom sends her to a summer camp for troubled teen. Only it's not for troubled teens but the supernaturally gifted. Kylie sees something strange on the bus but she just thinks she's bugging out. When she actually learns about the supernatural world, she freaks out but she gets used to it and learns to live with it. Through out the first two books, she's still learning how to deal with the new world and I enjoyed that. It made it seem "real" that it took time to adjust. The story got better with each book. A darker theme comes into play and they were really enjoyable.
The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski
This is another one of those beautifully written books that will just leave you in awe and wanting more. This was another book that gave me the feels. How the romance in the book was written and the relationship between Kestrel and Arin was so beautifully written and I loved the progression of it. The romance was one of those that when it happened, it was like a slap in the face. It wasn't something that happened quick, it crept up on me and when they finally kissed man. I got the feels hard. Best way for me to describe it.
Besides that, Kestrel was a great protagonist as well. She wasn't physically strong, but she was a great strategist and bad ass in her own way. There's a particular scene in the book where Kestrel is involved in a duel and she wins it by her keen observations.
Let me not forget to mention the plot. It was interesting because Kestrel's country had taken over Arin's and all of his people become slaves. That's how Kestrel meets Arin by purchasing him on a whim. I won't go into more detail because of spoilers but let's just say it was all a set up and the turn of events was very good.
That damn ending though. I put the book and sat there like "Marie Rutkoski...why". What a damn cliffhanger that was.