December and January have been crazy for me (I didn’t even post a December wrap-up!) but I really wanted to share my favorite reads with y’all, because those books deserve the spotlight. Better late than never, right? So, in no particular order…
Y: The Last Man by Brian K. Vaughan is a graphic novel series written by the same author of Saga. I picked up this series on the recommendation of my boyfriend and my love of BKV’s other work (Saga, Pride of Bagdad). As with Vaughan’s other works, some of the content leans toward the adult side of the spectrum so I would not recommend this series for younger audiences. Y chronicles the journey of the last man on earth after every man on Earth drops dead for unknown reasons. It is lovely and wonderful and very, very smart. I recommend the entire 60 issues series.
Saga by Brian K Vaughan is my favorite graphic novel I’ve read to date. The sci-fi “star-crossed” lovers story follows a couple who fell in love amidst a intergalactic war. The story is exciting and fun and narrated from their daughter’s perspective in the future (after the events of the story take place) which gives the narrative an enjoyable viewpoint. The characters are so rich and the story is consistent.
In Time by Alexandra Bracken is the first novella in the The Darkest Minds trilogy set after the events of The Darkest Minds. I almost put Never Fade on this list instead, because it feels cheap to have a novella on my list. However, the more I thought about it, the more I felt like I was cheating myself by not including it. This is the best novella I have ever read in my favorite dystopian series since The Hunger Games. Honestly, The Darkest Minds, Never Fade and Sparks Rise also deserve to be on this list, but In Time deserves to be highlighted.
Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me by Mindy Kaling is the first memoir I’ve read and began my obsession with listening the them on audiobook narrated by the author, and is thus far still the best I’ve listened to. Mindy is funny and personable and completely relatable. All the things you expect from the genre, but don’t always get. Mindy touches on exactly what millennial want to hear.
Paper Towns by John Green is my favorite John Green books (yes, over TFIOS, *shock*). I loved the journey of the story as it progressed. I was really attached to Margo, and was 100% with Q in obsessing over what had happened to her. I also enjoyed the ending. There doesn’t have to be closure for a story to end and I like how John Green executed that. I honestly can’t wait for this to be turned into a film, because I feel like they might just do a fabulous job with this.
13 Reasons Why by James Asher is the epitome of mixed reviews, but honestly it touched me so deeply. I love how the author not only showcases that little things add up to affect bigger things, but also that standing by and not saying anything is just as bad as the bullying itself. This book had me sobbing almost the entire way though.
The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin changed my mind about paranormal books. Mara Dyer is such a multi-faceted protagonist. The love watching her deal with the bizarre things happening to her. While I love (and gave five stars) to all three stories, but Evolution was easily the most fast-paced and compelling of the trilogy.
Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell only barely edges out Fangirl (I only wanted one Rowell book on this list). I haven’t related to a character as much as Eleanor in years. The story is beautiful in so many ways. It’s real. It’s raw. It’s cute, sad happy, tragic. It hurts. It loves. It is just like life – with beauty and tragedy, sorrow and joy. It is not at all what I expected and an all-time favorite.
The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey is an apocalyptic, alien invasion story. The focus isn’t on the invasion as much as it is on humanities reaction to the invasion and the physiological toll the extremities of this invasion has taken on the few humans left alive. The invasion comes in waves, leaving humans terrified of illness, birds and even other humans. It’s very much in the head of the protagonist and how she feels. It is action-packed, but it’s more than that, and I adore that extra layer Yancey brings the story.
Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver was the biggest surprise of the year. I liked Delirium, but the series wasn’t my favorite. I heard such great things about this book though, and decided to give it a try. And the first few chapters, I hated the main character. I never thought a popular-girl based story was going to be something I would enjoy. But, my gosh, Lauren Oliver killed this book. And killed me in the process. This book made me think about things I normally wouldn’t, feel things I didn’t expect. This was a book I read as slowly as humanly possible (I still flew though it) in attempts to savor the story. It was unlike anything else I have read and made Lauren Oliver an “auto-buy” author for me.
We Were Liars by E. Lockhart is my favorite book of the year. It is 100% over hyped (I say that solely because I think people would appreciate it more if it was hyped less), but it is still 100% worth your time. I won’t waste your time telling you why you should read it, just DO IT (but if you need more convincing, read my spoiler-free review here).