Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Best Books I've Read in 2018 ( So Far... ) - Top Ten Tuesday



Today I am sharing with you the very best, the cream of the crop, the tip of the top of books that I have read so far in 2018! This post is part of Top Ten Tuesday, which is hosted by The Artsy Reader Girl. 2018 is my first full year of blogging and creating videos about my reading and I am so excited to share with you the best, because they are great! It's an awkward list of eight books ( instead of five, too few, or ten, too many) but I wanted to be sure that they were truly the best of the best so - let's get to it!



The Heart's Invisible Furies 
by John Boyne
goodreads // amazon // library

oh my goodness this book! Which is really the theme of this whole list! lol but really, "The Heart's Invisible Furies" has nearly four and a half stars on Goodreads after over 20,000 reviews. How do I even talk about this one!? I think the biggest tell that this book is just amazing is the length. Usually when a book is over 500 pages I have a love hate relationship with it, even when I'm really enjoying it! Anybody else!? At over 500 pages it is SO RARE for me to not have that feeling, and I didn't feel it ONCE reading "The Heart's Invisible Furies". It's a sweeping and epic story that covers a man's entire life, each page was interesting and important to his story and never felt like fluff. Such a good book and a character and story that will stick with me. Check out the 60 second book review I created for this book by watching the video below!


 

The Women in the Castle 
by Jessica Shattuck

goodreads // amazon // library

I'm a sucker for historical fiction, so it is no surprise that at least one would make the list! "The Women in the Castle" by Jessica Shattuck is the best I've read so far this year, and has such a unique perspective, as well. This World War II story follows a group of German women who become friends after their husbands were killed or are missing in the war. The book explores the effects of living in Germany after World War II when trusting your neighbor was such a loaded idea and finding a way to stay positive and continue living your life was a daily struggle. I loved the writing style of this author and I can not wait to see what she writes next. Check out the 60 second book review I created for this book by watching the video below!





Ten Percent Happier
by Dan Harris
goodreads // amazon // library

Time for some non fiction! I wasn't familiar with Dan Harris or meditation before reading this book, but after finishing "Ten Percent Happier", I'm pretty impressed with both! If like me, you are drawn to self help books, but also kind of find them hooky as well- this book is for you. Dan Harris does such a great job investigating each of the different popular methods he stumbled on and "Ten Percent Happier" also has the perfect mix of memoir and information. A great read, but also a book I listened to - so if you're looking for an audiobook that feels more like a podcast, check this one out! Check out the 60 second book review I created for this book by watching the video below!




I'll Be Gone in the Dark 
by Michelle McNamara
goodreads // amazon // library

Oh, this book AHHH! I just finished reading this one last week, and I *can not* stop talking about it, and neither can the rest of the internet for that matter, lol! Not only are the crimes explored in this book absolutely haunting, McNamara's writing is just perfect for the task. I felt like I was sitting down to coffee with her while she told me a story that was in turns personal and then horrifying. I am so glad that the Golden State Killer has been caught, but regardless this is still a book to read with the light on!

Everything is Terrible and Wonderful 
by Stephanie Wittels
goodreads // amazon // library

Lordy, this book will stick with me. I am a huge fan of Parks and Rec and was saddened to hear about Harris Wittels passing a few years ago, but I also had no idea what a huge role he played in the writing of one of my favorite shows! "Everything is Horrible and Wonderful" drove home the idea of the family and person behind the " so and so died of an overdose" headline, particularly as Harris was such a smart, funny, and successful person. Stephanie Wittels is so honest in her writing and listening to this book in the car, I teared up quite a few times hearing her describe the pain and frustration she felt as Harris's sister.



The Good Daughter
by Karin Slaughter

"The Good Daughter" by Karin Slaughter is one of those stories that is *so* incredibly hard to describe to another person - as soon as I start typing or open my mouth I am worried that I am going to ruin it for some other potential reader. SO, carefully, I will say - this book is a suspenseful thriller that is part law procedural and part family drama. I don't even want to say who the main character is, and I definitely don't want to tell you about the unexpected events that created so much suspense. I don't want to go into those details, because I want you to experience the book the same way I did - it was *awesome*. I love the feeling of excitement that this book was able to evoke. I had to stop myself multiple times from jumping a paragraph or even a page or two ahead because I am just completely unable to handle this level of suspense! Check out the 60 second book review I created for this book by watching the video below!



The 57 Bus
by Dashka Slater
goodreads // amazon // library

 "The 57 Bus" by Dashka Slater is a non fiction book that I discovered through Book Riot ( god bless you, Book Riot). This book follows the lives of two teenagers - Richard, a black male teenager, and Sasha, a white agender teenager. One day, while Sasha was napping on the bus, Richard lit Sasha's skirt on fire which resulted in severe injuries for Sasha. Of course, Richard is arrested and then asked why he committed the crime, and when pushed to give reason to his thoughtless crime, his answer boiled down to hate. Richard is then charged with multiple hate crimes, and is facing life imprisonment. I loved the journalistic approach that Dashka Slater brought to this story. Each side of the story is presented in a way that is so relatable and understandable, and for that, also heartbreaking and incredibly confusing.





Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine
by Gail Honeyman
goodreads// amazon // library

 I love this book SO MUCH! And I think that it might be my new favorite fiction novel, and I can not possible tell you all of the reasons why, but you have to read this book! It follows a woman named Eleanor and she is wonderful, but she is definitely not "fine". Something terrible happened to Eleanor as a child and as a result she really struggles socially and also emotionally. And this book explores her experience, and how she might be able to heal from that trauma. You know those books, that you feel if everyone read them the world would be a better place? This is that book. I finished this books week ago, and let it sit with me before reviewing - I still think about it, and the things that it taught me. Meeting the author of this book at a book signing just increased my appreciation for the book and author even more. Hearing other people praise Honeyman, Eleanor, and this story was such a rewarding experience.I hope you enjoy this book as much as I did, but if not I hope you find another great read in 2018 that just blows you away instead!





And that's it! Those are my top eight reads thus far in 2018. I'm so excited to see what other great reads pop up the rest of the year. Let me know below in the comments what your top read has been so far! Did we have any favorites in common?! Happy Reading!

9 comments:

  1. I keep picking up The Heart's Invisible Furies in bookshops but putting it back down again. Sometimes I even carry it around with me a little first! I KNOW it's supposed to be amazing but I'll really struggling just taking that final plunge :p

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    1. I totally understand, Hanna! Had it not been a BOTM option, I'm not sure I would've taken the plunge, either. IT'S HUGE! But it's so good, and so worth the time, energy, money etc. I hope the next time your perusing the bookstore this one makes it home with you :)

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  2. Glad to see I'll be Gone in the Dark in on another blogger list! It was so good, so so good! I think the work flowed really well, despite McNamara not being able to finish it herself. I also like the fact that they marked out what was written after her death and how it was pieced together from her notes. I think that honesty was important.

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    1. IT WAS SO GOOD! And that's such a good point - they handled what could've been a mess of a book SO well. Piecing it together and adding footnotes as needed without making it feel unfinished. So good and so glad he was caught!

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  3. I’m on a waitlist for Eleanor Oliphant and I’ll be Gone in the Dark. I’m kind of curious about the first book on your list. I’ve considered reading it, but it’s so long!

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

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    1. Those are two awesome books to be on the waitlist for! I'm excited for you : ) "The Heart's" is a CHUNK of a book, and I usually wouldn't pick up a book that long either, but if you're in the mood for the themes in it you probably won't even notice the length! I really enjoyed it!

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  4. Several of these looks so interesting. :-)

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  5. The Good Daughter looks like a great thriller, and I've been reading a lot of those lately. Plus I'd like to try Karin Slaughter. The Women in the Castle sounds like an interesting read too!

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  6. I haven't read any of these titles yet but there's so many books on here that I've been hoping to read. John Boyne's is one that I really must make time to read. I hadn't heard of The Women In The Castle but I'm thoroughly intrigued and think I'll need to check that one out. Thanks!

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