These are all books that I have rated 5 stars in recent years, and I adore all of them to bits (obviously, since I gave them a full 5-star rating!), but for some reason I don’t talk about them very much! Some of these I have never talked about! So I thought I would share some of them, and give a bit of info on why I love them so much.
My Name Is Memory by Ann Brashares
Written by the author of the Sisterhood of the Traveling pants series, this book tells the story of Daniel & Sophia, who have fallen in love time after time over hundreds of years of time. Daniel remembers all of their past lives, but Sophia does not. He manages to find her every time they are reincarnated though.
Basically this book is a good version of “Fallen” by Lauren Kate (minus the fallen angels). It is romantic, magical, emotional, and beautiful. The words are written lyrically and the story is inter-woven at the highest quality – which is impressive considering it’s a time-travel-esque book. Because of the nature of the story – what with it spanning hundreds of years and involving reincarnation – this book could have been cheesy or convoluted or many other negative things. But it’s not. It is just beautiful and I LOVE it!
The Host by Stephenie Meyer
DO NOT JUDGE THIS BOOK BY TWILIGHT. This is in my top 20 favorite books of all time. For sure. It also contains one of my all-time favorite ships. It blends science fiction, romance, and great character building (of every single character too btw, like goddamn) in a young adult book and is just so freaking impressive. Stephenie Meyer takes her time with this book, not just building the scenery so that it is painted perfectly in your head as you read it, but also in the intricacies of her characters’ relationships & personalities. I am so in love with every aspect of this book. I re-read it all the time, and still swoon over so many lines and scenes. And Wanderer & Ian O’Shea are baes. (PS I don’t hate the movie adaptation of this books…)
The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly by Stephanie Oakes
This was the best book I read in 2016 hands down. If you want proof, check out my video here. Or my full review on Goodreads here. But seriously. This book is EVERYTHING. It is supremely well done, it is absolutely unique, and surprising in so many ways. I remember when I first picked it out from the library, I knew nothing about it at all and had no expectations; I just recognized the cover from Instagram. But boy am I happy I ended up reading it!
This book is technically a retelling of a Brothers Grimm fairy tale, but it just is so much more than that! It takes the original story and makes it better and poignant and fantastic. The plot, storytelling techniques, emotions, and writing will all take you by surprise, I guarantee it!
Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman
This book was my second favorite read of 2016! Similarly to “Minnow,” I went into this book with no expectations and bought it solely because of the cover, which is just so striking!
“Vengeance Road” is a YA western (the only ya western that I’m aware of at that, so if you guys know of any others please let me know!) that wayyyyy delivers! It is action-packed and the backdrop of the story is in the desert heat during the 1800′s. AND the MC is a female… and a badass heroine female at that yaaaaaas. I highly recommend this book, it’s just so fun and full of adventure and unputdownable.
Confess by Colleen Hoover
The only Colleen Hoover book I am a fan of out of the ones I’ve read so far. “Confess doesn’t have any problematic tropes or characters. It has a couple of evil (SO evil) characters, but they aren’t written as heroes. So they aren’t romanticized as good people. *cough*november9*cough*
Really though, all of the characters in this are just my children and do not harm them. And the LOVE STORY. MY GOD.
This book is so addicting and angsty, and one of the only books I’ve ever actually physically cried while reading it. I just swoon over the love story and had all of the feels over the dramatic plot and gahhhh. Also the web series adaption of this is 10/10 would recommend.
Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys
Why why why why aren’t more people reading this book? I mean, I know a significant number of people are, but not nearly enough! “Out of the Easy” made me want to read more historical fiction that takes place in New Orleans… but I can’t find any others for the life of me!
So first of all, this book has a 4.09 rating on goodreads with nearly 29,000 ratings… that’s awesome in and of itself. This story is crafted so well with impeccable writing. I really think that Ruta Sepetys is one of the best authors I’ve ever read, she’s just so damn good at it. And this one in particular has just no bad qualities at all. It tugs at your heart and has real depth. But yeah, Ruta has an incredible gift. She does a fantastic job of writing dialogue, descriptions, and interior monologue. They blend together perfectly to make a very readable, deep, and touching book.
Red Rising by Pierce Brown
MAJOR AUTHOR SWOON ALERT. B/C PIERCE IS FINE AS HELL. Additionally, he is an absolute nerd, has an incredible vocabulary, is so well-spoken, and is such a freaking bookworm himself.
ANYWAY. His passion for science fiction and literature itself is so evident in “Red Rising.” He writes very carefully and every line has a purpose. The imagination of this novel is simply astounding. And the fact that this is his first publish work… is just… I cannot.
I have seen blurbs about this book that compare it to Hunger Games… NO. This is nothing like Hunger Games. imho it’s better.
This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen
The YA queen! <3 I have read all of Sarah Dessen’s books except her newest release “Once and For All,” but “This Lullaby” is my favorite of hers. To the point where if I ever have a daughter, I want to name her Remy.
All of Sarah’s books are realistic and ground themselves in ordinary characters who are dealing with hardships that are yes difficult, but not crazy dramatic or out of the realm of possibility. They just feel like real life. With this book specifically, I personally felt like the focus was on the characters even more than her other works – which is saying something! but Remy and Dexter and all of their friends just jump out of the page for me. And I just really like how Remy in particular changes over the course of this novel; her story arc is a great one.