Hello friends & happy Saturday! It’s somehow already the end of December, so that means it’s time to share my very favorite books I read in 2018! YAY.
Putting this together felt nearly impossible because I read way too many excellent books this year and didn’t want to leave any at out. For this post, I ended up doing my top 5 favorite series, and then my top 5 favorite standalones. They’ll be ranked in order from least to most favorite. 🙂
Alright let’s do this:
5. Montague Siblings by Mackenzi Lee
This series that brings me endless joy and I still cannot get over how ridiculously good it is. Gentleman’s Guide is one of those books that I’ll probably reread a million times because it’s so comforting. And Lady’s Guide is a feminist anthem that inspires me in so many ways (it truly made me want to destroy the patriarchy). I love these books, and Monty, Percy and Felicity, with my all my heart.
“Everyone has heard stories of women like us—cautionary tales, morality plays, warnings of what will befall you if you are a girl too wild for the world, a girl who asks too many questions or wants too much. If you set off into the world alone. Everyone has heard stories of women like us, and now we will make more of them.”
4. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
It took me several years to get around to this duology, but I am so beyond thankful that I finally picked it up because WHAT a masterpiece this is. Found families and group dynamics are what I live for, and that was basically all these books were made up of. The Dregs and their ridiculous banter sold me on this series so quickly. Like, the “my ghost won’t associate with your ghost” interaction had me laughing for about 10 minutes straight I swear. Love love love this series.
“Kaz leaned back. “What’s the easiest way to steal a man’s wallet?”
“Knife to the throat?” asked Inej.
“Gun to the back?” said Jesper.
“Poison in his cup?” suggested Nina.
“You’re all horrible,” said Matthias.”
3. Shades of Magic by V.E. Schwab
How can I ever explain how much I adore this trilogy without just screaming eternally?? These books are way too good. Schwab created such a clever world full of magic, and it truly made me fall in love with fantasy all over again a few months ago. I already want to revisit this one because I just… I really miss Red London. And Kell and Lila and Rhy and Alucard.
Also, all my thanks to Iris for constantly hyping up Schwab (and especially this series) because it was what inspired me to read these. THANK YOUUU!
“There’s Dull London, Kell London, Creepy London, and Dead London,” she recited, ticking them off on her fingers. “See? I’m a fast learner.”
2. Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor
I honestly wish I could capture the feeling I had while reading this duology and live in it forever. There’s nothing quite like these books; they’re pure magic, and indescribably beautiful in a way that blew my mind a million times over. And Lazlo Strange is probably my favorite character I was introduced to this year. He is really the most wholesome soul. All the love in the world goes to this duology!!
“You’re a storyteller. Dream up something wild and improbable,” she pleaded. “Something beautiful and full of monsters.”
“Beautiful and full of monsters?”
“All the best stories are.”
1. The Dark Artifices by Cassandra Clare
Despite Queen of Air and Darkness not being my absolute favorite conclusion, this is a Shadowhunters series and, well, it’s going to take the top spot because I love it more than words can describe. There’s nothing that compares to how much I enjoyed reading these. The Blackthorn family is such a gift to this world, and Emma Carstairs is an icon. Plus, Lord of Shadows is genuinely one of the best books I’ve ever read in my LIFE. I adore this series with my entire heart and soul.
“Fiction is truth, even if it is not a fact. If you believe only in facts and forget stories, your brain will live, but your heart will die.”
5. A Very Large Expanse of Sea by Tahereh Mafi
I wasn’t originally planning on putting this in my top 5 standalones, but this book has been on my mind for months after reading it and I can’t seem to let go of it. This was by far the most eye opening book I picked up this year and I was constantly floored by how powerful it was while reading it. I know this book has made a huge impact on many lives, including my own. It’s brilliant.
“I’m tired of being patient with bigots. I’m tired of trying to explain why I don’t deserve to be treated like a piece of shit all the time. I’m tired of begging everyone to understand that people of color aren’t all the same, that we don’t all believe the same things or feel the same things or experience the world the same way.”
4. It’s Kind of A Funny Story by Ned Vizzini
After having a particularly rough time with my own mental health this year, I started reading books that I thought might be able to relate to. This one popped up a countless number of times in my search and I’m so, so, so grateful that I picked it up. I expected this story would be moving, but I didn’t expect just how much of a positive influence it would make on my life. This is one of those books I’ll never forget for how much it helped me when I needed it.
“A working brain is probably a lot like a map, where anybody can get from one place to another on the freeways. It’s the nonworking brains that get blocked, that have dead ends, that are under construction like mine.”
3. The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller
This book took heartbreaking to a whole new level (I’m honestly still in pain), but it was also one of the most beautifully crafted stories I’ve ever come across. I’m convinced Madeline Miller is a goddess herself because of how exquisite her writing is. Patroclus and Achilles own my heart, and reading this was honestly one of the best experiences of the year.
And I also appreciate this book so very much because it was the reason Dezzy and I became friends, and I could not be more thankful for that. :’)
“We were like gods at the dawning of the world, and our joy was so bright we could see nothing else but the other.”
2. Radio Silence by Alice Oseman
I was never expecting to love this book as much as I did, but oh my goodness this was some kind of genius piece of literature. Alice Oseman wrote the most relatable story about being true to yourself and pursuing your passions and it was so touching. This is one of those books I want everyone to read because of how inspiring it is. It’s also so beautifully diverse, which made my heart happy. And Frances and Aled have the best kind of friendship. So much love.
“I’m sure you think I was complaining about nothing. You probably think I’m a whiny teenager. And yeah, it was all in my head, probably. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t real”
1. History is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera
Sometimes, I think you read a book at the exact moment in which you need it the most. This is exactly what happened with History is All You Left Me. I’ve owned an ARC of this for years, but it wasn’t until March of this year that I picked it up. I was at the lowest of my lows with my mental health then, and reading this genuinely changed the course of my life. It was one of the biggest reasons I felt inspired to finally seek out therapy.
But besides all the personal stuff, I also love this book for how uniquely written it is. Adam Silvera captures emotion and created characters so well. I’m going to try to write a proper review of this someday, but I’ll just say for now that this book means the absolute world to me.
“There’s nothing wrong with someone saving my life, I’ve realized, especially when I can’t trust myself to get the job done right. People need people. That’s that.”
And the winners are…
…Lord of Shadows and History is All You Left Me! I couldn’t bring myself to decide on one favorite, so I picked a favorite contemporary and favorite fantasy. These two definitely take the top spots for my favorite reads of 2018. ❤️❤️❤️
I’d love to know
What were your favorite books of the year? Did you read any I mentioned in this post?!