2016 was a wild year! I started reading again after a 2-year book slump!(you can totally tell I played some catch-up with The Raven Boys and Heir of Fire) And since I had so many books to read, most of them were amazing. I may be too nice with my Goodreads ratings but I still say that most books I read this year were 4 or 5 stars!
So let’s get to my favorite books of 2016!
So first I want to give a shout out a few books that didn’t quite make the cut:
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
I loved the writing in this novel, and I loved the atmosphere. The romance wasn’t my favorite but it hardly mattered to me in the end, I just focused on the beautiful words on the page! An epic read if you are looking for a magical atmosphere.
The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier
This middle-grade novel was the perfect combination of spooky and magical. I found myself genuinely creeped out! I definitely want to check out more from this author in the future.
I’ll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson
I didn’t have any contemporaries on my list so I thought I’d give a shout out to my favourie contemporary of the year! This novel is a stunning story of two siblings, told from their two points of view, at two different points in their lives. It’s just a fascinating coming of age type story that I think even dedicated fantasy readers will love. Plus the cover is STUNNING!
Favorites of 2016:
(These aren’t in any particular order)
Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
This is a sci-fi about these two recently-broken-up teens, Kady and Ezra, living on a out of the way coal mining planet. Their planet in attacked by an evil corporation type and Kady and Ezra find their way onto different escape vessels. They fight to survive on these ships as they run from the evil corporation and have life-threatening situations aboard the ships.
THIS FRICKIN BOOK. This a very close contender for my favorite book of the year. The story is told through a series of IM chats, case files, and video transcripts. The thing I loved about this is that it kept me up until 2 am, with tears running down my face because it was so intense. You have no idea what will happen next and how it will work out in the end, or if it even will! Because of the format it’s a very quick read; I finished it in 2 sittings I think. My entire thought process during the last 100 pages was just: OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD WTF!!!!! -I’m very eloquent I swear.
Better to go into this book knowing nothing(as it is with most books) so I’ll leave you with this: An amazing introduction into the Sci-Fi genre, this book will give you so many questions and less answers.
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
Six dangerous outcasts. One impossible heist. Follow the Dregs, a gang led by the…enigmatic… Kaz Brekker, as they forge a team of six reckless teens with different skills as they attempt to break into the unbreakable for a crap ton of promised money.
Just fantastic. This is one of my favorite types of novels, a story that has an ensemble of main characters that you can’t help but love. Leigh Bardugo has created a rich fantasy world that is gritty and entrancing. I haven’t read the Grisha Trilogy, but I would love to be back in this world. The only drawback to this book and series is that it’s only a duology!(I read Crooked Kingdom and it was A+ as well)
As I said the best part of this book is the cast of characters, I could read about them in any sort of situation and love them to death! Go read this book now if you haven’t!
Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare
Set in Los Angeles, USA, the Blackthorn family and Emma Carstairs are thrust into a mystery involving Edgar Allen Poe, family dynamics, pizza parlors, and of course love. A sequel series to The Mortal Instruments, this series thrusts you right into the Shadowhunter world, no fumbling or figuring it out, we get to go straight into the action with this first in a trilogy novel!
I love the Shadowhunter world(in book form) and I love Cassie Clare’s writing. She once again has created a cast of characters I fell in love with from the first page, and a level of badassery of almost untouchable epicness. The thing I love about this book is that we aren’t following a character new to the world, Emma knows what’s up and how to take care of herself against demons and dangerous downworlders alike. And the Blackthorn family is my FAVORITE. They are fiercely protective of one another and I live for it. Personally I liked Mark the best but that’s just me, he’s so awkward and unintentionally funny it kills me.
10/10 a must read for anyone who’s a fan of the Shdowhunter novels.But you have to read TMI AND TID to read this!!!!
This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab
A dual perspective story of 2 teens who want to be what they are not. Kate, the daughter of basically a mobster king, wants to be just like her ruthless father. August, a monster born of tragedy, wants to be human. With their city being torn apart from two sides, Kate and August find unlikely allies in each other when they have to stop their city from being destroyed, and themselves with it.
The concept of monsters in this book fascinate me. They are born of tragedy, like murder and violence, and there are 3 kinds. I forget the specifics, but if you read it the explanation is pretty easy to follow in my opinion. Victoria’s writing is concise and enjoyable, and her characters, while flawed, just captured my heart. Especially August(I just wanna hug him)! After reading this I just want the next book, which I believe is the finale(should be more!!!). Everything in it is compelling. This was my first VE Schwab book, but now I want to read her other books even more!!
And I Darken by Kiersten White
Lada Dracul, the daughter of Vladimir Dracul, is the most badass character. We follow her throughout her childhood, growing up as a women in this time, to her teen years, leaving her home and entering the treacherous world of politics. Her companion and 2nd POV is her younger brother Radu, who struggles to become as strong as his father and society approves of.
I enjoyed this SO much MORE than I anticipated!! Some reviews I’ve seen said it was slow, but I found even the parts where there wasn’t action and we just saw Lada or Radu thinking through their struggles to be amazing. Lada manages to badass even when the society she is in does not promote women. And Radu(who is probably my favorite, it’s very close) grows SO MUCH in this book! He goes through a lot of personal struggles with who he is and what his place is, but he is wicked smart and is badass in a different yet effective way. I can’t wait to see how he deals with things in the next book! All the dynamics between the characters is so intricate and everyone has secret motivations it seems and I am here for it. I love me some political novels.
Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: The Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan
Magnus Chase, a homeless 16 year old in the streets of Boston, gets a nasty shock when he find out he is the son of a Norse god. With the help of his homeless buddies and a kickass Honors student, Magnus sets out to protect the world from a evil wolf dude(idk his name. important to mythology trust me).
So now I am asking myself WHY I didn’t pick this up sooner??(yeah yeah I know why, 2 yr reading slump and whatnot) It will never replace PJO as my fav Rick Riordan series(too much sentimental value) but I think this will be a CLOSE second!! I knew zilch about Norse mythology before this besides Thor, Odin, and lots of world stuffs. Now I know….some more Norse names and worlds…kinda…it’s all very confusing okay? But my confusion did not hinder my love for these stories at all. Magnus is an awesome 1st person narrator(thank god after having Apollo’s mediocre one). If you liked Percy’s inner voice in PJO, then you’ll love Magnus. He’s very different from Percy personality-wise, but he is just as funny and sassy. I’m super sad this is only a trilogy, but I impatiently await the release of the third book this fall!!
Note: You gotta read PJO and HoO before you read these if you want the full effect.
The Mime Order by Samantha Shannon
This is the sequel to The Bone Season so I won’t give a synopsis or much about it, just a few quick thoughts!
I loved this second book because we get a bunch of new characters that we learn about and attach to. This is gonna be a 7 book series so we’ll get to know them a LOT better, thank god. But this story, I feel, is building to epic proportions!
The world can be a little bit confusing, but I just reference to the back of the book or the internet(or the clairvoyant guide thing for ebook) for help! This series needs to get more hype because it totally deserves it!!!! Read it!!!
The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater
Blue Sargent, daughter of a house full psychics, is firmly against the’Raven Boys’ from the local private school, Aglionby Academy. That is until she meets a group of boys with a fantastical quest. Full of dead welsh kings, birds, cars, ghosts, and magical forests this epic story of a group of even more reckless teens is a tale for the ages.
Can you tell how much I love this series from my description? Basically it’s my favorite YA series ever. Yeah. It’s THAT good. I only started this series this year, the release year of the finale. And I don’t even know where to begin. The writing: Poetic and Entrancing. The plot: Epic and Unique. The characters: Complicated and Terribly Fascinating.
I’ve never fallen in love with a cast of characters so quickly. Every book peels back more layers of each one, and you can’t help but root for them through the entire adventure. I just want more people to read this amazing series, it gets all the praise from me. I am obviously unable to communicate my feelings about these book effectively so I’m going to stop while I’m ahead! Just read them!!
That concludes my favorite books of 2016! There were lots more that I loved but these ones stood out, and for many of them I eagerly await the sequel! Thanks for reading and have an awesome day!