Book Reviews, Favorite Books of the Year Lists

Favorite Books of 2019

Before 2020 progresses any further, I need to tell you my top five of 2019.

It was a weird year of reading for me. The first month or so I read a few books back-to-back. The next couple of months lulled. This was followed by a month and a half or so of binge reading. Then…a really long lull. Looking back, what I can say about the books I read in the last year of the 2010s is most of the books I read brought me right back to where it all began earlier in the decade.

5. P.S. I Still Love You/Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han

Somehow number five keeps being the books I read early on in the year, but the To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before trilogy really got my year off to a warm and fuzzy start. Not to mention it was my first read-it-until-you-finish-it-at-2-am books. Lovers of romance young and old will love this series. Even if reading isn’t your thing, it has a movie on Netflix (with the sequel dropping next month). Jenny Han perfectly captures the uncertainty and stresses of a high school romance. Especially one that begins so…unconventionally. If you haven’t read or watched the first movie yet…what are you even doing?

4. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

If you’ve been following my reviews this year, then you know I had a little bit of an Outlander…moment. Couldn’t get enough of it. Although I didn’t make it to the end of the books by the end of the year like I thought (or hoped), the first book really was great. I don’t think I’ve read historical fiction before Outlander so I don’t know how informative the genre usually is, but I learned quite a bit about Scotland from Gabaldon. So much so it’s my next place to visit. If you like learning a bit of history with a heaping side of steamy…this series is for you.

3. The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

I just wrote a review on this book a few days ago as it was my final book of 2019, and the decade. It was a great one to end on. For the entire spiel, read the review here. I will say, you can expect me to be reading way more fantasy like this in 2020 and beyond. I really think it’s one of the best fantasies I’ve read so far. I’m only one book deep, but if you haven’t read Holly Black, you’re missing out.

2. Defy Me by Tahereh Mafi

When I said this year was about going right back to where it all began, this is the first instance. When Tahereh Mafi announced she would be expanding the Shatter Me series with three more books, I was excited and skeptical. Then, I realized the story could use a further expansion. It’s been so great getting to slip back into the world of these characters. It’s comfortable and when I think about how I’ve been with them since 2013, it’s mind-blowing. 2020 brings the final installment and it will be sad to say goodbye for real. I recommend this series if you still enjoy dystopians and people with superhuman powers (that aren’t superheroes).

1. The Darkest Star/The Burning Shadow by Jennifer L. Armentrout

And we’ve reached my favorite series of 2019. It should come as no surprise that the spinoff of one of my favorite series ever tops this list. The Darkest Star takes place after the Obsidian series ends and follows a familiar character that we all know and love, Luc. You definitely don’t have to read one to understand the other, but I personally feel like I understood so many cameos and little tidbits more because I had read Obsidian. These books are also so fun to read. I love JLA’s writing and she always makes me laugh. Luc’s story also is quite different than Daemon and Katy’s so if you read Obsidian and it wasn’t quite for you, I encourage you to give this one a try.

Looking back at the year in books, it went fast. I read 19 altogether, 11 short of my 30 book reading goal. To start the 20s off right, I hope to meet my goal of 30 this year.

I’d love to hear your favorite books you read last year! Also, let me know if you’d be interested in a favorites of the decade post. It would be interesting considering I started the decade in middle school and in a Nicholas Sparks kick.

I hope your 2020 is off to a great start and happy reading!

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