It’s that time again! Happy New Year’s everyone! I’ve already done my anticipated reads post for 2018, now it’s time to reflect on the books that I absolutely loved reading this year. I read a total of 76 books, so there were a lot to choose from! Most of these are releases from 2017, but some were not. Some were middle grade books. Most were YA. Anyway, in no particular order at all, here are my favorite reads of 2017! (I tried to do 17 books, but I couldn’t push it down past 18. So, one for good luck, or something).
A Poison Dark and Drowning (Kingdom on Fire #2), by Jessica Cluess – I absolutely loved the first book in this series, and so I immediately devoured this one when I got my hands on it! I will say I wasn’t too thrilled with where she went with one of the characters, but the rest of the story and relationships are just so good!!
Rebel of the Sands, by Alwyn Hamilton – This one was really fun to read, very fast-paced and with great world-building a such a slow-burn romance I still swoon whenever I think about it! Seriously, it’s like Arabian Nights meets the Wild West and I love it!
A Study in Charlotte (Charlotte Holmes #1), by Brittany Cavallaro – Oh man, I did not expect this book. It yanked me in and I could not put it down for the life of me! I love the concept of this being about the descendents of Watson and Holmes, and just everything about it was so wonderful! It still had echoes of the original Conan Doyle stories and yet felt so original.
Jane, Unlimited, by Kristin Cashore – Alright, so I wasn’t even really planning on reading this because I had been a little disappointed by Graceling when I first read it, but I wanted to see what the fuss was about and I got an ARC so….I ended up loving it to death. It was so unexpected in both the format and how much I instantly liked it. It’s definitely strange, since it plays off the Choose-Your-Own-Adventure format, and ends up going into multiple genres, and for some reason I loved it, but I know not everyone might. I also think this should be considered a New Adult book based on the age and experience of the protagonist. Anyway, it’s definitely one of my favorites of the year!
The Upside of Unrequited, by Becky Albertalli – Another one I wasn’t really planning on reading, but ended up doing so because of hype. This book was so cute and fluffy and just made me smile the whole damn time! It was nice to see someone who is described like me in size as the MC and just everything that happened felt so real. If you are looking for a pick-me-up of any kind, this one is definitely perfect!
Speak Easy, Speak Love, by McKelle George – Oh this one was perfect. A 1920’s-based retelling of Much Ado About Nothing. What more do you want? The characters were amazing, the writing was gorgeous, and the story felt both true to the time period and the original play. The hate-to-love romance was absolutely divine, and I cannot say how much I love this book!
The Epic Crush of Genie Lo, by F. C. Yee – This book was hi-la-ri-ous. Like, I felt like I was laughing every other page. The main character feels so easy to empathize with, the storyline is full of action, I learned a lot about the myth of the Monkey King, and it was just an altogether really fun read!
The Last Magician, by Lisa Maxwell – This one was a beautiful almagamation of genres that I adore – time travel (although not as much as I expected), magic, and thieves. Well thieves isn’t a genre, but I have such a weakness for them and pirates for some reason… Anyway, the characters in this were excellent, the storyline was captivating, and I cannot wait for the next one!!
Six of Crows, by Leigh Bardugo – So I will admit, I read through the first three Grisha books just so to get to this one, because this is the book I was really interested in reading (see: thieves explanation above). And I just love this book and it’s sequel. The characters are what definitely make the story, and Inej will forever be my queen. She just…stole my heart, man.
Poison’s Kiss, by Breena Shields – This one was a surprise kind of love because of how it slowly grew on me. The romance is cute, the characters easy to empathize with, and the storyline full of intrigue. The writing is exquisite in it’s descriptions, and I just wish more people were aware of how wonderful this book is!
Ashes to Fire (Creatures of Light #2), by Emily B. Martin – Okay, the first book in this series is called Woodwalker, and seriously just go read it. Because I read half of the first book in one day and didn’t even realize I was falling in love with it. Martin’s descriptions are beautiful, the way she shapes her characters makes them feel so real, and she has just created a world that just pulls me in and leaves me breathless. And interestingly enough, there isn’t an magic! But trust me, it’s still such a good read!
Gunslinger Girl, by Lyndsay Ely – Yes, I’m including this because even though the book comes out in 2018, I read it in 2017 so I get to count it. This book was definitely not what I expected. I expected a Wild-West-in-the-future a-la Westworld (which, tbh, I wasn’t a big fan of). Instead, what I got was a gunslinger girl who can’t bring herself to kill someone point blank (unless it’s in self-defence), a set & costume designer as a love interest (okay that part may have been what made me go giddy over this book), and a show that is one part sideshow acts, one part Moulin Rouge, and it was just beautiful. The characters stole the show, the political intrigue kept me on the edge of my seat, and the entire premise was just exquisite. Definite recommendation!
The Girl from Everywhere, by Heidi Heilig – I am so glad I read this book this year! The time-travel-via-maps idea was so amazing and original, and the characters and storyline just stole my breath away. It was fast-paced and filled with many wonderful moments, and the sequel was just and excellent! If you like adventure of any sort, this one is a great book indeed!
Much Ado About Nothing, by William Shakespeare – Okay, so I read this mostly because I wanted to read it before I read Speak Easy, Speaak Love, and partly because I told myself a while ago that I wanted to read more Shakespeare. And oh man has this one quickly become my favorite Shakespeare so far (of the ones I’ve read). At least of the comedies I guess. I am just a sucker for the hate-to-love stuff and the wit in this was great (they all talk about how much wit Beatrice and Benedick have, but excuse me did you hear what Margaret said? Now that girl’s got a sharp tongue).
Last Day on Mars (Chronicle of the Dark Star #1), by Kevin Emerson – This is a middle grade novel that I absolutely adored. It was so fast-paced, full of sci-fi adventure, and some really great characters. There was a lot fo mystery as well that kept me on the edge of my seat, and I am so excited for the next book to see what happens next!
The Trials of Morrigan Crow (Nevermoor #1), by Jessica Townsend – As soon as I read the summary for this book, I knew I had to read it. If you like Diana Wynne Jones then this book is for you. The magic of the world is so beautifully rendered, and the characters are fun and easy to love. I enjoyed the storyline immensely and can’t wait to sink my teeth into the next book.
The Shadow Cipher (York #1), by Laura Ruby – I love recommending this book because it has got something for everyone. It’s got adventure, mystery, and a little bit of history. Taking place in an alternate New York with different technology, it’s about kids searching for the answer to a really old cipher that takes them through throughout the city following historical clues in hopes that the treasure at the end will help them save their family home. It is like Goonies meets National Treasure and it is just such a fun read!
The Dreadful Tale of Prosper Redding, by Alexandra Bracken – This read was entirely based on the author attached to it, not going to lie. It is the perfect Halloween read, with descriptions that make you feel like you are in the midst of October, a storyline to both spook and squick, and characters that easily capture the heart. Definitely looking forward to the sequel for this book!
And that’s it, friends! There were definitely many more books I read this year that I liked, but this were by far my most favorite. What books did you read this year that were your favorites? Any recommendations?