I have been on a huge reading kick lately!! Which is such a relief because I kind of stalled after February/March but knew that if I wanted to reach my goal of over 45 books this year I needed to step up my game. I also knew that once I got started again I would really get into a groove. I’m the type of reader that once I get going, and have good books ready for me, I’ll keep the pace up. Unfortunately that means it might just take one bad book to get my out of rhythm.
I have read some amazing books lately so I haven’t had a hard time getting my set number of pages in a day. To be honest, the problem was putting the books down when I was with my family last week. I found myself bringing the book to the dock and trying to read/listen at the same time because I just couldn’t put down The Maidens. Here are my top 15 books that I’ve read this year and a review/rating to help you pick what you read next.
SHOP THESE & OTHER BOOKS I’VE READ THIS YEAR
No. 1 The Proposal
♥♥♥ out of 5
This was a great quick beach read. It was kind of nice to have a bit of a reprieve from the heavy plot twist mysteries with a nice light romance. To be honest I read this in a day because the excitement of new love and dating was fun to experience again 🙂 If you need something light and easy for a vacation? This book is for you!
No. 2 Malibu Rising
A really moving story about sibling bond as well as heartbreaking read about family. It is set in the 80’s so a fun change to picturing present-day. Not an incredibly great read, only in that it didn’t have me gasping or dying to know what happens. I really loved the writing and thought that the dynamics of everyone involved was intriguing which is why I read it so quickly. But if you are looking for something to capture your attention and keep you on the edge of your seat? This book might not be the one.
No. 3 The Maidens
OH. MY. GOSH!!!! This book was unbelievable. This was the one that I was reading while with my family last week that I could not put down and felt a little bad that I was ignoring them… but also not that bad because this book was just that good. Finished it in a day, and just ask my family how I was reacting as I read: gasps, hands over my face, yelling out “no way!”. I haven’t read The Silent Patient yet which was another one of his books, but now I have that in my cart and am setting aside a rainy day with zero interruptions to read it. If you don’t like mysteries, then this isn’t for you, but if you like books that have you on the edge of your seat, holding your breath, just dying to know who did it? Read it! And Read it now!!
No. 4 Luckiest Girl Alive
I’m not sure what I was expecting to of this book. I didn’t know much about it, and in the beginning had to read the back to get an idea of what was to come because in the first 100 pages, I wasn’t entirely sure. After that it picked up a bit and did take a turn that I didn’t know it would, however the main character was not very likable to me which made it very difficult to really love the book. It also covers two very heavy topics that are also very sensitive so found the heaviness and severity to bring my rating down a bit.
I picked this up because of the author (have read so many of her other great books) and the movie that’s coming out in August. I prefer to read the books beforehand now and because the movie looked so good I thought the book would be too. And MY GOODNESS was I right. This was a romance that you just had to know how it ended. Twists and turns and years and loss run rampant through this book and honestly had my crying at times. Sorry, I’m emotional. But if you like any of her other books, I highly recommend this one. Or if you’re interested in seeing the movie? Read the book!! I have a feeling it might be even better than the movie.
Another Reese’s Book Club recommendation that did not disappoint. I put in my stories the morning that I finished it that I changed my workout plan so that I could finish it that morning. I walked and walked on the treadmill to keep reading. It takes a turn that you would not expect, or at least I didn’t in the beginning, and it’s a turn that will keep you wanting to know what happens as well as have you on the edge of your seat a bit.
No. 7 Furia
I loved this story. It was inspiring and a lovely change from the traditional boy meets girl, falls in love and they live happily ever after… or do they? 😀 It was a great book and good read but not one that I just wanted to keep reading. I liked the story but it’s wasn’t one that I couldn’t put down. Again, I did like it, but if it’s hard when comparing it to others that I’ve read that had me on the edge of my seat.
No. 8 Send For Me
This one was actually one that got me in a reading funk. But when I finished it was when I had a true appreciation for the story. Unfortunately I didn’t feel like it had an actual plot, it felt more like telling the story of a family that went through tremendous struggle and passed those stories down. Again, when I got to the end I had a huge appreciation for the message and the story, but you’ll have to go into the book knowing that to, I think, really enjoy it.
No. 9 Transcendent Kingdom
This was an incredibly raw and moving book. Amazing story about family and loss and the interconnection between faith, love, and science. While moving, it was incredibly heavy. I highly recommend reading it and think that it is a story that so many people need to read as it is one that many families have to face today. But warning that it is heavy and therefore not really a page turner. For me, a good beach read is either something that is light or has me on the edge of my seat. Unfortunately this is neither but it is incredibly moving and amazing writing so will keep you going!
No. 10 Outlawed
Another book that I bought off of Reese Witherspoon’s suggestion without any backstory. It is a crazy insane concept when you think about how the book covers this antiquated outlook on fertility. At times it is a little outlandish and I had to keep reminding myself it was fiction and to picture an old western movie. I think because that storyline was so out of the norm of what I usually read it was hard to picture. But when I did and when I got out of my head about the plot it was quite interesting and kept me intrigued. If you’ve liked other Reese’s Bookclub recommendations then you will probably like this one; not love it though. Maybe this is one you borrow and not buy 😀
No. 11 The Last Story of Mina Lee
I wasn’t sure what to expect out of this book. This was another blind purchase based off of a recommendation so I had no expectations going into it. I was quite surprised by its twists and turns but found it to be a heartbreaking story that you can’t help but root for a happy ending. Although you keep reading just to find out how unlikely that is. It’s a book that makes you wonder how much you actually know your family members and those close to you as well as appreciate the unknown struggles of others.
No. 12 the Hunting Party
Ooooohhh man Lucy Foley does it again! If you haven’t read her other book, The Guest List, you need to add that to your list right away. And if you have and loved it? This one will not disappoint. The same interpersonal connections and dynamics, the same guessing and intrigue, and the same insane twists and turns that will make you want to read the book in one sitting. I did, whoops! Had no intention of doing so, but my gosh I just couldn’t stop!! Aren’t those the best books though? That you actually had other things you needed to do but the book was just too good so you ignored them. Long story short? Read it!
No. 13 Rising Strong
Brene Brown is great! I have loved so many of her other books, including this one. It felt a little repetitive at times? Maybe because I had just recently read several of her other books and should have spaced them out more, but I think her message is one most people should hear. I am really interested in reading her book Dare To Lead, but if you have read the other books of Brene Brown other than Rising Strong, then I would say you shouldn’t feel insane compelled to read this one. You’ve probably already heard most of what’s in it.
No. 14 Three Women
This wasn’t what I expected. I definitely wasn’t prepared going into this book so I think that affected how I felt about it. It was an illuminating and interesting concept and I think for people who are interested in relationship dynamics as well as gender roles would find it interesting. But if you’re strictly there for the story and plot twists, I would skip it.
No. 15 Work In Progress
I loved reading the Fords story! I love Leanne and her style and everything about what she stands for in the design world so reading more about their story and how she came to be where she is was awesome. If you like her show, or really HGTV shows in general you’d probably enjoy this book. I especially love hearing about all the other jobs that she had beforehand and the fact that she didn’t start where she is until later in life, kind of like me! Made me feel like I wasn’t totally crazy to start a new chapter here.
… now for what’s next!