Top Ten Reads of 2019

Top Ten Reads of 2019

I wanted to do this list for a long time and honestly this was a fight to the death for me to decide which book got number one. I will explain the best I can for each book. Let’s go!


10.

The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon

This is probably recency bias, as it was the last book I read this year. However I loved it. The last third had me screaming as I raced through it. It was an epic read and an epic way to end the year.


9.

Tyrant’s Throne by Sebastien De Castel

If I could pick the whole series, I would. However this book defines the series. It shows the cumulation of all the themes. It creates tears, joy, and a unfathomable need to be valorous. This book made the series for me.


8.

Heartless by Melissa Meyer

I loved this retelling of Alice in Wonderland. I had to decide between this and Tyrant’s Throne, and this beat it out because it is a stand alone. If I compared this to The Greatcoats series, it would lose every time. This retelling stole my heart and made me cry for the transformation of the Queen of Hearts.


7.

The Princess Bride by William Goldman

Fact, I fully believed this was a retelling of another book. Also fact, it is not. This book was amazing. Obviously, but the humor in it really got me. Fully got me. I loved every moment of it.


6.

The Wicked King by Holly Black

This is where we get into battle territory, as I had to decide which books were my absolute favorite reads of the year. I chose the second book of this series, because I saw the first and third coming, in a way, but the second took me on a joy ride. It’s my favorite of the series, and 100% why I adore this series so much.


5.

Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo

I went from confusion to adoration for this novel, all too quickly. I loved every moment of this book. The twists were great. The plot and setting were phenomenal. Everything about this book was amazing, but what separates this from the top four are themes, and their importance to me.


4.

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

I had to decide where to put this book, as it is the only book that made me sob this year. I loved every moment that this book gave me, in solidarity, and in understanding. This book hit me hard and did not let go. It started my year off, and stays with me through it all, but it was not my favorite read.


3.

Wicked by Gregory Maguire

When I first reread Wicked, I was fully prepared to hate it. Instead I fell into it, and fell into the themes and was spun in the magic. This book had me analyzing the themes of a book in full, for the first time in such a long time. This book has so many quotable lines and everything I could ever hope for in a book.


2.

Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson

Why two instead of one? That was a debate I still have. This book reinvigorated my love for reading, single handedly. I love this stand alone so frickin much that I have recommended it to nearly everyone I know has mildly enjoyed fantasy.


1.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

When you give me a new character to love. You win. When you give me themes that strike home. You win. When you give me a new life motto to live by and a resonance in my mind that sticks with me every night. You win, everything. This book was hands down the best book I read this year. Not because it was the best written, or the most important, or the best themed, but because this book fundamentally changed my life.

And that’s what’s important.


I had a LOT of fantasy novels on this list. I didn’t do this list last year, and I kind of wish I did, so I could see the comparison.

What books were your favorite for the year?

MM


The Story of a Witch (2019 Book Quotes in review)

The Story of a Witch (2019 Book Quotes in review)

The following is the story of a Witch. A Witch of charm and knowledge, who experienced love and loss. A Witch who found herself enthralled and enchanted by the words that were spoken and written. The following is the story of a Witch, and what was said about her, to her, and by her.


Continue reading “The Story of a Witch (2019 Book Quotes in review)”

2019 Reading Challenges Final Totals: You Read How Many Books

2019 Reading Challenges Final Totals: You Read How Many Books

January 2019

Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

Linger by Maggie Stiefvater

Passenger by Alexandra Bracken

Incarnate by Jodi Meadows

The Lost Queen by Signe Pike

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

A Burnable Book by Bruce Holsinger

Redwall by Brian Jacques (reread)

Total: 8


February 2019

The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris

Inkheart by Cornelia Funke

Inkspell by Cornelia Funke

The Looking Glass Wars by Frank Beddor

The Iron Witch by Karen Mahoney

Mattimeo by Brian Jacques (reread)

Martin the Warrior by Brian Jacques (reread)

The Legend of Luke by Brian Jacques (reread)

Mossflower – Brian Jacques (reread)

Total: 9


March 2019

the witch doesn’t burn herself in this one by Amanda Lovelace

Glass by Ellen Hopkins

2fish by Jhené Aiko Efuru Chilombo

City of Dark Magic by Magnus Flyte

The Legend of Luke by Brian Jacques (reread)

The Outcast of Redwall by Brian Jacques (reread)

Total: 6


April 2019

Heartless by Marissa Meyer

A Bowlful of Stars by Florence Crannell Means

Mariel of Redwall by Brian Jacques (reread)

The Bellmaker by Brian Jacques (reread)

Suspect by Michael Robotham

Rat Race by Dick Francis

Article 5 by Kirsten Simmons

Breaking Point by Kirsten Simmons

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett (reread)

Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse

I’m a Spider, so What (Japanese Webnovel)

Stormcaster by Cinda Williams Chima

Deathcaster by Cinda Williams Chima

The Princess Bride by William Goldman

Death Note Another Note: The Los Angeles BB Murder Cases by Nisioisin and translated by Andrew Cunningham from the original concept by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata

Love Her Wild by Atticus

The Dark Between Stars by Atticus

Total: 17


May 2019

Where I Ache by Megan O’Keeffe

Sparks of Phoenix by Najwa Zebian

We Rule the Night by Claire Eliza Bartlett

The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert

The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black

What in the Dickens by Gregory Maguire

Nocturna by Maya Motayne

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

Animal Farm by George Orwell

Summer Island by Kristin Hannah

The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis
– The Magician’s Nephew
– The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
– The Horse and His Boy
– Prince Caspian
– The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
– The Silver Chair
– The Last Battle

Total: 17


June 2019

Salamandastron by Brian Jacques (reread)

The Pearls of Lutra by Brian Jacques (reread)

The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseinh

Sorcery for Beginners by Matt Harry

The Bone Charmer by Breeana Shields

Spindle Fire by Lexa Hillyer

Girls of Paper and Fire by Natasha Ngan

Wicked Saints by Emily A. Duncan

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

The Wicked King by Holly Black

A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin

A Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin

A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin

Total: 14


July 2019

State of Sorrow by Melinda Salisbury

Before the Broken Star by Emily R. King

The Heart of Thorns by Bree Barton

Onyx & Ivory by Mindee Arnett

These Rebel Waves by Sara Raasch

Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson

All For The Game by Nora Sakavic
The Foxhole Court
The Raven King
The King’s Men

A Feast for Crows by George R.R. Martin

Marlfox by Brian Jaques (reread)

The Taggerung by Brian Jaques (reread)

Triss by Brian Jaques (reread)

Total: 13


August 2019

Spellslinger by Sebastian De Castell 

Shadowblack by Sebastian De Castell

Wicked by Gregory Maguire 

Son of a Witch by Gregory Maguire 

A Lion Among Men by Gregory Maguire

Out of Oz by Gregory Maguire

The Killing Moon by N.K. Jemisin

The Shadowed Sun by N.K. Jemisin

Peach Fuzz by Lindsay Cibos and Jared Hodges

Peach Fuzz 2 by Lindsay Cibos and Jared Hodges

The Keepers: WWIII by Rick Friar

The Keepers: Tribulation by Rick Friar

 A Thousand Nights by E.K. Johnston

Spindle by E.K. Johnston

20,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne 

Boy, Snow, Bird by Helen Oyeyemi

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid 

The Last Namsara by Kristen Cicarelli

Lord of the Flies by William Golding

Vast Fields of Ordinary by Nick Burd

Total: 20


September 2019

Redwall Novels by Brian Jacques
– Loamhedge
– Rakkety Tam
– High Rhulain
– Eulalia!
– Doomwyte
– The Sable Qean
– The Rogue Crew

Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling
– Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone/ Philosopher’s Stone
– Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
– Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
– Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
– Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
– Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince
– Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows

The Missing Series by Margaret Peterson Haddix
– Found
– Sent
– Sabotaged
– Torn
– Caught
– Sought
– Risked
– Rescued
– Revealed
– Redeemed

Charmcaster by Sebastien De Castell

Soulbinder by Sebastien De Castell

Queenslayer by Sebastien De Castell

Violin by Anne Rice

Total: 28


October 2019

Winter Glass by Lexa Hillyer

The Merciful Crow by Margaret Owen

Forever by Maggie Stiefvater

Sinner by Maggie Stiefvater

Three by Kristen Simmons

Inkdeath by Cornelia Funke

Serpent & Dove by Shelby Mahurin

Ninth House by Leigh Bardough

The Beautiful by Renée Ahdieh

to drink coffee with a ghost by Amanda Lovelace

Total: 10


November 2019

The Greatcoats by Sebastien De Castell
– Traitor’s Blade
– Knight’s Shadow
– Saint’s Blood
– Tyrant’s Throne

The Queen of Nothing by Holly Black

A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin
– A Dance with Dragons

Lightbringer Series by Brent Weeks
– The Black Prism
– The Blinding Knife
– The Broken Eye
– The Blood Mirror
– The Burning White

Total: 11


December 2019

The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon

Fallen Isle Trilogy by Jodi Meadows
Before She Ignites
As She Ascends
When She Reigns

The Last Namsara Series by Kirstin Cirarelli
– The Caged Queen
– The Sky Weaver

Bright Star by Erin Swan

The Hunting of the Last Dragon by Sherryl Jordan

Dragon Rider Legacy by Nicole Conway
Savage
Harbringer

Dragon’s Trust by K.C. Glass
Trusted
Burned
Stolen

Total: 13


Grand Total: 148

What I both hate, and love, about this challenge, is that it doesn’t include any of the manga, webtoons, webnovels, or otherwise that I read over the course of the year. Those numbers would bolster these ones by so much. I read through four whole webnovels. I keep up to date on so many manga and webtoons, and none of those technically count on this list. In some ways, it’s nice to see just what books I read, but it’s not all the reading that I have done. Next year I think I will make note of all the other forms of fiction that I read on a similar list.

Regardless, this challenge was fun and easy to do. I am doing it again next year, for certain!


And so here ends this challenge. We have more posts to come. See you soon.

MM


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2019 Reading Challenges Final Totals: Finishing the Series

2019 Reading Challenges Final Totals: Finishing the Series

Series Finished:

– Shattered Realms (2 books) – Started in 2016

– The Missing (5 books) – Started in 2010

Books read: 7

Series Complete: 2


I think this is the saddest of my posts. Not my fault. I just didn’t read as many book series that were old, as I thought I would. Oh well. Next year, when I do it again, I’ll have far, far more.


2019 Reading Challenges Final Totals: The Golden Trio

2019 Reading Challenges Final Totals: The Golden Trio

I’m SO Angry. I missed two prompts because I couldn’t get myself to read them. I was so close to completing it! Oh well. Here you go!


Books:

  1. Harry:
    Prompt: re-read a Harry Potter Book
    Book Chosen: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by JK Rowling
    Why: It’s the first book.
  2. Ron:
    Prompt: under 200 pages
    Book Chosen: The Lost Sisters by Holly Black
    Why: Its a novella.
  3. Hermione:
    Prompt: over 500 pages
    Book Chosen: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by JK Rowling
    Why: Have you seen how big that book is?
  4. Ginny:
    Prompt: poetry book
    Book Chosen: 2fish by Jhené Aiko Efuru Chilombo
    Why: This was the first poetry book I read after deciding to do this challenge, as such I just put it on the list immediately.
  5. Luna Lovegood:
    Prompt: creativity or something unusual
    Book Chosen: Sorcery for Beginners by Euphemia Whitmore with Matt Harry
    Why: This book is a introductory book to magic as well as telling the story of a boy who is reading the book to get magic. Its unusual to tell a story in this way (and to have text book like experts on the side).
  6. Fred & George:
    Prompt: with twins
    Book Chosen: The Foxhole Court by Nora Sakavic
    Why: Andrew and Aaron, need I say more?
  7. Fleur Delacour:
    Prompt: translated from another language
    Book Chosen: Death Note Another Note: The Los Angeles BB Murder Cases by Nisioisin and translated by Andrew Cunningham from the original concept by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata (Original was in Japanese)
    Why: I coulda picked a manga book, but I read this for OWLs in April, so I figured it was the best pick.
  8. Dumbledore’s Army:
    Prompt: social justice or a current issue
    Book Chosen: The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
    Why: This book is everything. Periodt.
  9. Professor McGonagall:
    Prompt: strong female lead
    Book Chosen: Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson
    Why: I really could have picked almost any one of the YA novels that I have read this year. All the girls have been strong, mostly. I could have picked the girls from We Rule the Night or Girls of Paper and Fire. However I gave this book a 5/5 so I picked it.
  10. Dumbledore:
    Prompt: involving a school or teacher
    Book Chosen: City of Dark Magic by Magnus Flyte
    Why: Our MC is a professor at a university in the states. Easy choice.
  11. Gilderoy Lockhart:
    Prompt: from a celebrity book club
    Book Chosen: Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi (Jimmy Fallon book club)
    Why: It was on my list of books I wanted to read and it was in a book club. Easy pick here.
  12. Umbridge:
    Prompt: with a pink cover
    Book Chosen: Torn by Margaret Haddix
    Why: It is closer to purple, but we are going with it.
  13. Snape:
    Prompt: includes page 394
    Book Chosen: Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince by JK Rowling
    Why: This book is named for Snape, how could I not pick it?
  14. Newt:
    Prompt: containing a fantastic beast
    Book Chosen: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by JK Rowling
    Why: Dragons.
  15. Bathilda Bagshot:
    Prompt: written by a woman
    Book Chosen: Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater
    Why: I could have picked almost any of the books I read this year, but this was one of the first books I read around the time of deciding to do this challenge.
  16. Godric Gryffindor:
    Prompt: represents this founder’s values
    Book Chosen: Redwall by Brian Jacques
    Why: Traits: Chivalry, Daring, Bravery, Athletic, Courage, Nerve. Warrior mouse, learning to go use his courage to save the day. He has to fight a save his home and go on an adventure to find the sword to do this.
  17. Helga Hufflepuff:
    Prompt: represents this founder’s values
    Book Chosen: All the Kings Men by Nora Sakavic
    Why: Traits: Dedication, Hardworking, Fairness, Patience, Kindness, Tolerance, Modesty, Loyalty. Okay so hear me out here. Dedication, and hardworking make sense for Exy. Fairness comes from the fact that they win in the end. Patience and Tolerance, for the members and their issues, trying to understand them with Neil being understood by his new family (team). Kindness from the members to Andrew and Neil. Loyalty between the foxes. Modesty… well that’s probably the only one that doesn’t completely fit, but the rest does.
  18. Rowena Ravenclaw:
    Prompt: represents this founder’s values
    Book Chosen: Spellslinger by Sebastian De Castell
    Why: Trait: Intelligence, Wit, Wisdom, Creativity, Originality, Individuality, Sharpness, Acceptance. This took me a moment to decide, but I think that its a good example.
  19. Salazar Slytherin:
    Prompt: represents this founder’s values
    Book Chosen: The Wicked King by Holly Black
    Why: Traits: Resourcefulness, Cunning, Ambition, Determination, Leadership, Self-Preservation, Fraternity, Cleverness. Do I need to go into the dynamic between Jude and Cardan? Jude is fighting for her family, controlling Cardan, and controlling the world of the Fae all from the shadows. It’s a pretty Slytherin book.
  20. The Chosen One:
    Prompt: mentions Harry Potter in it
    Book Chosen: The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert
    Why: because it does?
  21. He who must not be named:
    Prompt: character that shares a name with a character from Harry Potter-verse
    Book Chosen:
    Why: Yeah… This didn’t happen. Or it did, but I didn’t realize the name was the same, so oops.
  22. Deathly Hallows:
    Prompt: symbol on the cover
    Book Chosen: These Rebel Waves by Sara Raasch
    Why: It does.
  23. Gryffindor:
    Prompt: recommended by a Gryffindor
    Book Chosen: The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
    Why: Recommended by my friend.
  24. Hufflepuff:
    Prompt: recommended by a Hufflepuff
    Book Chosen: Rat Race by Dick Francis
    Why: Recommended by my mom (for OWLs)
  25. Ravenclaw:
    Prompt: recommended by a Ravenclaw
    Book Chosen: Inkdeath by Cornelia Funke
    Why: The whole series was recommended, but I forgot if I used the others or not.
  26. Slytherin:
    Prompt: recommended by a Slytherin
    Book Chosen: I’m A Spider, So What by Okina Baba (Webnovel)
    Why: Recommended by my brother.
  27. House Cup:
    Prompt: has won an award
    Book Chosen: Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo
    Why: Lots of awards it has won on Good Reads.
  28. Quidditch:
    Prompt: involving a sport
    Book Chosen: The Raven King by Nora Sakavic
    Why: Exy.
  29. Wizarding Radio:
    Prompt: listen to an audiobook
    Book Chosen: The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by
    Why: I had to for the NEWTs. I loved every minute of it!
  30. Hogwarts Library:
    Prompt: checked out from the library or borrowed from a friend
    Book Chosen: Son of a Witch by Gregory Maguire
    Why: I checked it out and then the book came in that I purchased. So it counts enough.
  31. Herbology:
    Prompt: related to nature
    Book Chosen: The Queen of Nothing by Holly Black
    Why: snek
  32. Potions:
    Prompt: with potions, alchemy, or chemistry in it
    Book Chosen: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by JK Rowling
    Why: Polyjuice Potion.
  33. Astronomy:
    Prompt: with a star on the cover or in the title
    Book Chosen: A Bowlful of Stars by Florence Crannell Means
    Why: Self explanatory
  34. Defense Against the Dark Arts:
    Prompt: about Good vs. Evil
    Book Chosen: Shadow of the Conqueror by Shad M. Brooks
    Why: The dichotomy of evil vs good is so interesting in this, considering the bad guy is the MC.
  35. Transfiguration:
    Prompt: about a huge change
    Book Chosen: Siddhartha by Herman Hesse
    Why: This book is the actual definition of change. It’s the entire plot.
  36. History of Magic:
    Prompt: historical fiction
    Book Chosen: The Lost Queen by Signe Pike
    Why: It takes place in the times of King Arthur and is Merlin’s origin story.
  37. Charms:
    Prompt: charming cover
    Book Chosen: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by JK Rowling (Slytherin House Edition)
    Why: At this point, I’m just trying to make sure I use all of them at some point.
  38. Care of Magical Creatures:
    Prompt: animal on the cover
    Book Chosen: Mattimeo by Brian Jacques
    Why: It does. It’s a mouse.
  39. Arithmancy:
    Prompt: number in the title
    Book Chosen: 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne
    Why: 20,000 is a number
  40. Ancient Runes:
    Prompt: set before you were born
    Book Chosen: The Beautiful by Renée Ahdieh
    Why: It takes place in the 1800s
  41. Flying:
    Prompt: bird on the cover
    Book Chosen: The Merciful Crow by Margaret Owen
    Why: Because it does.
  42. Divination:
    Prompt: includes prophecy or fortune telling
    Book Chosen: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by JK Rowling
    Why: Introducing the entire plot of Harry Potter! The reason why Voldemort did what he did is in this book and it’s because of a prophecy.
  43. Muggle Studies:
    Prompt: memoir or biography
    Book Chosen:
    Why: lol didn’t do this either
  44. Apparition:
    Prompt: set somewhere you want to travel
    Book Chosen: Beyond a Darkened Shore by Jessica Leake
    Why: I love Ireland and want to go there one day.
  45. Restricted Section:
    Prompt: banned book
    Book Chosen: The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorn
    Why: First classic I read this year that was also banned.
  46. Durmstrang:
    Prompt: with a boat in it
    Book Chosen: Before the Broken Star by Emily R. King
    Why: We are dealing with pirates!
  47. Beaubatons:
    Prompt: by a French author
    Book Chosen: Serpent & Dove Shelby Mahurin
    Why: It takes place in France, or a France Fantasy setting. Is that not good enough?
  48. Ilvermorny:
    Prompt: by an American author
    Book Chosen: Winter Glass by Lexa Hillyer
    Why: She’s American.
  49. Gringotts:
    Prompt: with gold foiling
    Book Chosen: Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon
    Why: It actually isn’t but its embossed and that’s about as good as we are going to get.
  50. Flourish and Blotts:
    Prompt: 2019 release
    Book Chosen: Nocturna by Maya Montanye
    Why: It released in May of 2019.
  51. The Dark Mark:
    Prompt: dark cover
    Book Chosen: Onyx & Ivory by Mindee Arnett
    Why: It was pretty dark to me at least. (image wise, not color wise, like it’s a dark concept.)
  52. Hogwarts-A History:
    Prompt: that intimidates you
    Book Chosen: A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin
    Why: Do you have any idea how long it took me to convince myself to read this book? Too long, that’s how long.

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