Guys, I DID IT!! I can’t believe that I passed my 100 book goal, ending the year at 107. Honestly, I figured that I’d make it but WOW I’m still shocked! I read some incredible books this year and found a few new favorites. I can’t wait for next year!!
82. East of the Sun: Julia Gregson
83. Dear Edward: Ann Napolitano
84. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone: J.K. Rowling
85. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets: J.K. Rowling
86. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban: J.K. Rowling
87. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire: J.K. Rowling
88. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix: J.K. Rowling
89. Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince: J.K. Rowling
90. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: J.K. Rowling
91. The Guest List: Lucy Foley
92. American Dirt: Jeanine Cummins
93. Such a Fun Age: Kiley Reid
94. The Glass Hotel: Emily St. John Mandel
95. Summer of ’69: Erin Hilderbrand
96. The Book of Hidden Things: Francesco Dimitri
97. Catherine House: Elisabeth Thomas
98. The Water Dancer: Ta-Nehisi Coates
99. The Queen of Hearts: Kimberly Martin
100. The Giver of Stars: Jojo Moyes
101. The Vanishing Half: Brit Bennett
102. See What I Have Done: Sarah Schmidt
103. The Shadow King: Maaza Mengiste
104. Untamed: Glennon Doyle
105. What The Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast: Laura Vanderkam
106. The Brave: Nicholas Evans
107: When No One Is Watching: Alyssa Cole
Top favorites this quarter were: Dear Edward, American Dirt, The Water Dancer, The Giver of Stars, The Vanishing Half, The Shadow King, and The Brave. I don’t know if I’ve ever had a quarter where I read so many absolutely PHENOMENAL books!
Dear Edward: My cousin recommended this to me and I really LOVED it. It follows a 12 year old boy, the sole survivor of a plane crash on a cross country flight who’s entire life is flipped upside down. It was touching, poignant and sweet & SO well written.
American Dirt: I honestly can’t recommend this to enough people! It’s been called the modern day Grapes of Wrath and it IS. It was my favorite book this year – I read it in a matter of hours because I couldn’t put it down. It was so well researched and extraordinary, and despite the fact that it’s fiction, it could have been written about any number of people.
The Water Dancer: I can’t believe that I’ve never read this before!! The combination of magical realism and history was beautifully done and magnified by his prose. This was a hard one to put down, and quite honestly was one of those books where you had absolutely NO idea what was going to happen next.
The Giver of Stars: I was pleasantly surprised by this book!! Based on a true story of the Horseback Librarians of Kentucky, it follows women in rural Appalachia who deliver books to the citizens of their town via horse and help the spread of literacy. It was full of beautiful imagery and dealt with race, economic order, misogyny and educating women – all while following the growth of the main characters.
The Vanishing Half: Ok, this one was SO GOOD that I read it in a matter of hours. It follows twin sisters raised in an unconventional southern town who separate and live completely different lives. The plot line weaves through the decades and shows the stark difference in these women’s lives as well as perfectly encapsulates the issues of racism throughout their lives.
The Shadow King: I like this book but definitely struggled a bit reading it. The style of writing is significantly different than anything else I’ve read and echoed elements of classic Greek plays. It does have a lack of punctuation in every speaking part, and takes a bit of getting used to. The plot line deals with the Mussolini lead invasion of Ethiopia in 1935 and the women who helped fight the Italians. It’s a part of history that I knew absolutely nothing about, and showcased BOTH sides of the fight, which I personally liked, as it helped flesh out the characters significantly more than it would have otherwise!
The Brave: I really loved this one – I thought that it was fast paced, interesting and the imagery of 1950’s Hollywood and Montana was perfection. The story seamlessly flips between the main characters childhood and present life with no confusion, and beautifully develops his tragic childhood.
A note about Untamed: I heard SO many positive ravings and reviews from my friends about this book and guys…I wanted to LOVE it and I just couldn’t. I thought parts were great, but overall I got a preachy & elitist vibe from it. It jumped around way too much for me and I just…couldn’t. It wasn’t awful and parts were well done, but overall it wasn’t a book I’ll spend my time on again.
I truly read SO, SO many good books this year and can’t wait to dive into my list for 2021!!
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