Thursday, December 29, 2016

Top Ten Books of 2016

I'm not really a blogger anymore, but I had a great year of reading this year and wanted to share my top ten list. 2016 is the year I finally figured out how to check out e-books from my local library, and my book consumption exploded as a result. I think I read maybe 25 books in 2015; this year, my total was 73. I had hoped to make it an even 75 but the end of the year got a little too busy. No matter! Here are my favorites; be warned, my new library access resulted in a gluttony of my favorite type of book: female-led YA and adult fantasy novels. No apologies for my taste in books, being a grown up and finished with school means I get to read what I like!

 Top 10:

10. Walk the Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson:   Gold Rush-era historical fiction with a fantastical twist! A bit harrowing, as covered wagon tales and the Old West tend to be, but this author has a real knack for complex characters and believable emotions. I also enjoyed the sequel, Like a River Glorious.

9. The Rook by Daniel O'Malley: The concept of a secret British agency that investigates and deals with supernatural people and situations was fascinating and well done. Add in a female agent protagonist with amnesia and I was utterly riveted. This one also has an enjoyable sequel, Stiletto.

8. Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas: The first Maas entry on my list but definitely not the last, this is the fourth entry in her Throne of Glass series. A bit of a placeholder, frankly, but well-paced and extremely entertaining as all of her books are.

7. Heir of Fire by Sarah J Maas: The third book in the Throne of Glass series, this one really exploded the story beyond the more well-contained world of the first two books. I loved seeing the groundwork laid for a much larger story than I anticipated when I read the first book, and Celaena's transformation into the self she becomes in this and later books is incredible to read. 

6. A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Maas: To call this a retelling of Beauty and the Beast is a gross understatement of its excellent world building and multi-faceted protagonist, Feyre. This is the kind of book I would describe if you asked me, "Describe your favorite type of book."

5. The Martian by Andy Weir: I know I'm a couple years behind on this one, but turns out there's a reason it's so popular. Even with all the science gobbledygook, I was completely engrossed on the treadmill. My new standard of reading: if you can make me forget I'm running, you must be a great book.

4. Morning Star by Pierce Brown: A great end to the Red Rising trilogy. I love the twists and turns of plot this author is so adept at inserting into his books.
3. The Fate of the Tearling by Erika Johansen: I feel so justified in having recommended the first two books of the trilogy to everyone I encounter, because this third installment was incredibly satisfying. It's always notable when a YA fantasy trilogy delivers on the hype of the first book.

2. Empire of Storms by Sarah J Maas: Sorry not sorry, the latest (fifth) book in the Throne of Glass series blew my mind. I cannot wait for the finale, the author has set us up for a killer ending to the story. 

1. A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Maas: I think I had a book hangover for a good week after finishing this sequel to my #6 on this list. Insanely good. Read it. The third one will be released in May, I am basically counting the days. 2016 was definitely the Year of Maas for me, no regrets!!