Can you guys believe it’s about time we’re bringing this tag back already? Because I’m 100% shocked that it’s already the middle of June and therefore slowly time to bring this back around. 2019 has been flying by, I’m telling you. That 30th birthday of mine is getting closer and closer. *hides*
I’ve done this tag every year that I’ve been blogging so far (luckily for me I literally started the first week of January all the way back in 2017) and I just looked back at them and I still haven’t read some of the books I talked about in 2017 or 2018. Especially Renegades. That book is going to haunt me, I’m telling you guys. xD
Best Book You’ve Read So Far
I honestly had such a difficult time picking just one book for this question because pretty much every book that I gave 5 stars to this year deserves to be up here, in my opinion. But, since I talk about pretty much all of them at some point below and I managed to blank on these two (I don’t know how I did that either) I figured I would give them the prime spotlight as the first books you see in this post.
We all know Angie Thomas is a fucking genius with her writing and On The Come Up did not disappoint in the slightest! I loved that while this book is set in the same neighbourhood as THUG, Bri’s life is quite different from Starr’s which is true for so, so many people around the world too.
And then we have Kingsbane, a book I didn’t know what to expect from when I first picked up book one and then even the sequel, Kingsbane. But I ended up enjoying it so, so much – plus, that villain. He’s the Darkling type but even better. Yeah, I said it.
The best sequel you’ve read so far
I talk about Godsgrave in more detail for a different question further down, so we’ll move right along to King Of Fools by Amanda Foody! I have been waiting for this book for such a long time now and I was finally able to read it and y’all. I’m so, so glad that it lived up to my own expectations and hype. This had such a fun, unexpected m/m romance that I wish had been the main romance for that character, plus this book is so, so, so political and I adored that! I did have some things I didn’t absolutely love but I talk more about that here.
New release you haven’t read yet but want to
I’ve been reading quite a few fantasy and sci-fi novels lately, so I want to try and get to more contemporaries before summer is over and two recent releases that have been on my radar lately are Don’t Date Rosa Santos (from what I’ve heard the love interest is exactly my type so) and With The Fire On High! I’ve actually started listening to the second one but more to help me fall asleep, so I want to go back and start from the beginning. I do remember bits and pieces and I did really like those, so I have high hopes of loving this book!
Most anticipated release for the second half of the year
The second half of 2019 is filled with so, so many fantastic releases that I had a really difficult time narrowing it down to three (I couldn’t do less) and the three I chose to show the covers of are Children Of Virtue And Vengeance (LOVED the first book), Ninth House (it’s Leigh Bardugo – of course I’ll want to read it! Please make sure you check out early reviews for this, Leigh herself says this isn’t for everyone and most importantly: this is ADULT literature) and lastly Darkdawn (Godsgrave‘s ending made sure I’d want to read the finale).
But other books on my list that I need to get to are: The Guinevere Deception by Kiersten White, The Toll by Neal Shusterman, Call Down The Hawk by Maggie Stiefvater and Girls Of Storm And Shadow by Natasha Ngan.
Is this the part where I take off and go hide under some big rock for even thinking of including these three releases here? You guys know I didn’t shut up about King Of Scars (hello, it’s all about my love Nikolai!) and The Devouring Gray leading up their releases and now you find them on this list.
But the thing is, I expected so much more from all three of them? Especially King Of Scars. It’s a Leigh Bardugo book. Her Six Of Crows duology remains one of my favorite series overall, even four rereads in. That’s my level of love and appreciation I have for Leigh’s work and then King Of Scars just did whatever it did. I still haven’t been able to actually give it a proper rating. Five months after finishing the book.
As for Aurora Rising and The Devouring Gray, they were still good books and I’ll probably read their sequels but I was hoping for more. And like, I still gave those two books 3 stars and had a good time reading them, they just didn’t quite live up to the hype I had created for myself which sucked.
The first one I need to talk about is The Book Thief which I was ready to give up on even on my second try of reading this because I couldn’t get into it. The audiobook didn’t even help. And then I decided to just read myself again one afternoon and I literally flew through almost half the book. The more horrible the overall situation became for the characters, the more involved I became. I literally sobbed my way through the last 50 or so pages of this book. I was drained by the time I read the final sentence. It was an experience for sure.
Next we have Godsgrave which I was ready to never actually give a chance. I had read Nevernight and I didn’t end up enjoying it as much as I had hoped but I had the translated edition of Godsgrave as a review copy so I figured I had to give it a try at least. I read the 720 page book (don’t ask me why the translation is that long) in a single day. And I loved it. Godsgrave is actually the reason why I wanted to pick up Aurora Rising!
And lastly we have a book that I bought over two years ago and it had just been sitting on my shelf ever since. But suddenly everyone was talking about Red Rising on Instagram stories and I finally decided to pick it up. And thank god I did! I ended up really enjoying it, despite its flaws and I’m now eagerly waiting for book 3 to arrive in the mail. That book 2 cliffhanger is cruel.
Favorite new author
I don’t think I really have a new favorite author this year? I don’t often pick up books by authors I’m not familiar with as I love sticking with what I know or I haven’t read a lot of books by a new author to say I adore them/their writing and will read everything they ever publish.
Newest favorite character
For the second year in a row we have characters from Amanda Foody and Sandhya Menon books make it in this category and how could they not? I absolutely adored Sweetie. She’s awesome and deserves all the great things in life. Jac Mardlin was a character I already quite enjoyed in Ace Of Shades but I always found myself wanting more. And I got that. And then some. I loved that he got his own POV in KOF and had more of his own story happening – great decision on Amanda’s part! And lastly we have a character who is so utterly different from these two but who I love a lot: Sevro from Red Rising. That boy. He is so wicked, loyal, awesome and just overall a character I don’t read about often and he sure as hell stole my heart!
A book that made you cry
I’ve already talked about how I basically sobbed my way through the last 50~ pages of The Book Thief and as far as I can remember, that’s probably the only book that made me actually cry. King Of Fools made yell ‘NO’ multiple times and had me in shock, but no crying (I think?).
A book that made you happy
Huh, I just realized that Red, White & Royal Blue and The Red Scroll Of Magic both feature similar characters and it’s kind of funny that they both ended up being books I absolutely adored.
Both have a biracial bisexual character (my forever love Magnus Bane and of course Alex Claremont-Diaz) and a gay love interest (Prince Henry and my love Alec Lightwood), both parties growing up in a society that isn’t exactly accepting of them. I loved these books for various and different reasons but they both made me incredibly happy, that’s for sure.
Favorite book to film adaptation you saw this year
I haven’t really seen any/many book to film adaptations this year (I think) other than my rewatch of Love, Simon. I’ve mainly been binge watching tv shows this year. xD
Favorite review you’ve written this year
This honestly has to go to my review of Again, But Better. I didn’t end up enjoying this book but since I was reading it with my friend Caro, we were talking about our thoughts throughout which made writing this review quite easy. Plus, I tried out a different style of review for this which also made it more fun overall.
The most beautiful book you’ve bought so far this year
This was actually a question I could answer quickly, so yay! I love Charlie Bowater’s artwork so much and it’s so recognizable and I love that I was able to get Aurora Rising which features her artwork on the cover for my own collection! And the other beautiful book has to be King Of Scars, it’s about as extra and flashy as Nikolai and I adore it. Plus, the naked hardcover is a work of art too!
What books do you need to read by the end of the year?
I have the translations for both of these sitting on my shelves as I requested them from their respective German publishers but I still haven’t gotten to them yet and I really want to make it a priority to read and review all of my German review copies by the end of this year! I loved both of Becky Chambers previous books so I’m even more excited for Record Of A Spaceborn Few, unfortunately I don’t remember too much of Blood Of A Thousand Stars‘ predecessor but I’ll manage!
Okay, phew. This blog post ended up being so much longer than I originally anticipated it would ever get. xD At some point I’ll have to learn to be more precise in my thoughts but clearly that day isn’t today.
How about you guys? What have been some of your biggest surprises or disappointments this year? And new favorite authors or characters you’ve fallen in love with? What’s you favorite book so far this year? Let me know in the comments down below! I can’t wait to talk to you. 🙂