My Top Books of 2015

Boy, has this been quite the reading year! It was the one where I emerged myself in YA, discovered many of my favourite novels, and met many extraordinary characters, most of whom I felt were my very best friends. Of course, in a year of so many books there were some that exceptionally stood out to me, ones I know I will forever remember, as well as read time and time again!

I couldn’t possibily narrow them down to only five or so, here they are, in no particular order:

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                                                                                                                    Anne of Green Gables for me was a classic I feel I can never part without, because the characters in it were ones that would stay with me forever. I loved the world L.M Montgomery created, and all the adventures (not to mention trouble) Anne got into! She and I are kindred spirits for sure 🙂

Fangirl was the book I re-read the most this year, wiFANGIRLth a grand total of FOUR TIMES! I started reading it on an e-reader, but even a few chapters in I knew I needed the hard copy in my hands, and my friend bought it for me for my birthday. After I finished it the first time, I went right back to page one and started again, because it was a story I didn’t ecarry onver want to leave.

And because I have Fangirl, I’ll follow it right up with Carry On by Rainbow Rowell, a fantasy that started off as just a seedling in Fangirl. I loved it so much, with great voice and a page-turning plot. Rowell strikes again! allthebrightplaces

All the Bright Places was also a favourite this year, written by the delightful Jennifer Niven. It was such a deep and thought-provoking story, with wonderful characters and the best kind of romance. I couldn’t get enough of it, dreading the moment when I was too tired to even turn the next page, because all I wanted to was to continue reading!Red-Queen-Victoria-Aveyard

Red Queen, as some of you know, was definitely one of my top books of the year. Beautifully written by debut author Victoria Aveyard, it was all anyone would want in a book.  Find out why everyone should read Red Queen.emmy&oliver

I also really, truly loved Emmy & Oliver by Robin Benway. The friendship that bonded the characters together was so strong and the story just plain incredible. Emmy & Oliver have become one of my favourite literary couples, adding yet another one to my list!

And thea little something differentnsigns point to yes, of course, we have a A Little Something Different! Sandy Hall just has this knack for writing the most adorable romances ever, and her debut was just a pleasure to read. I’m also going to put her second novel, Signs Point to Yes, because I loved it nearly as much.

I’m going to follow Sandy Hall’s work with other Swoon Reads titles, 22718710including Kimberly Karalius’s Love Fortunes and OtherVelvet-Temple-West Disasters (I got the priviledge to do an interview with the wonderful author, as well as a book review, so check them out if you’re interested in reading about the whimsical world of Grimbaud!) and Temple West’s Velvet. I was never one for vampire romances, but this book might have turned me. (Pun intended!)

There have also been so many others- 2015 truly was a spectacular year for reading! Other favourites have been A Step Toward Falling by Cammie McGovern, Finding Audrey by Sopie Kinsella, First & Then by Emma Mills, The Distance from Me to You by Marina Gessner, Kissing in America by Margo Rabb, Between the Notes by Sharon Huss Roat, and None of the Above by I.W Gregorio.

Hopefully 2016 has just as many great books to offer!

Cheers to the new year,

Zoie 🙂

 

Merry Bookmas!

Happy Holidays everybody!

I’m sure that some of you out there who read book blogs have heard of Bookmas before, especially for those who follow features such as the 12 Days of Bookmas (Here’s one I’ve been checking daily!).While I’m not doing that (next year, perhaps?) I do have a post to share with you all today. Because for this Bookmas, I was given four beautiful books that I just had to gush about!

Of course, this season the #1 item on my Bookmas list was the holiday anthology, My True Love Gave to Me, edited my Stephanie Perkins, with short stories contributed by many of the most popular YA authors today! (Rainbow Rowell is the main reason I NEEDED this!)

I mean, how could I not want this beauty?

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I know what I’ll be getting cozy with this winter- that is, if the snow decides to even make an appearance! So far where I live, the temperatures have been pretty warm, but hopefully this new year will provide more appropriate weather for me to cuddle up with a cup of hot tea and My True Love Gave to Me!

The next book I got was one I have heard lots about, and was mostly inspired to have after reading All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven. By debut author Jasmine Wanga, it’s My Heart and Other Black Holes!

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Isn’t it just perfect? The problem of being a bookworm is that I want to read all these books right now and all at once, but unfortunately that just isn’t possible. *SIGH*

The third book I recieved was Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli, which I’ve heard is hilarious. I’ve already read the first three chapters, and although they were short, I could tell that I’m in for an amusing ride!

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And last but not least, this Bookmas I got none other than All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven! And yes, it is the very one I mentioned above, haha! I’ve already read it, but I feel like it needs its own spot on my bookshelf after checking it out from the library 😉

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And speaking of bookshelves, after recieving these four beautiful additions, I had a feeling it was about time I rearranged my shelf. It was getting boring, looking at my books in the same old alphabetical order, so I placed them all by colour! I’ve been blabbing about it all day:

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Did you notice the little Young Adult label on it, too? Very library-esque. And don’t you guys love the colours and everything? It’s a little something I like to call my ‘Literary Rainbow’.

And because I couldn’t resist sharing more, here are some of my most recent buys: Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell, Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaira, and Signs Point to Yes by Sandy Hall.

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The only one I haven’t read is Love Letters to the Dead, a YA I’ve heard nothing but good things about, and can’t wait to start it! Eleanor & Park I read back in March, but ended up not liking that much. But because I just LOVED Fangirl and Carry On by Rainbow Rowell, I figured that had to be a fluke. Chances are I’ll love it just as much as her others, because c’mon- it’s Rainbow Rowell! The last book we have is Signs Point to Yes, a Sandy Hall book I read in two days just last week, and loved almost as much as A Little Something Different!

That’s all I have for today (this actually was one of those spur-of-the-moment ‘Oh maybe I should blog about this!’ posts) but this was really fun to share!

I hope all of you are able to snuggle up with a good book this holiday season, and get reading 🙂

Happy holidays to all!

Zoie ❤

November

November Reads

As far as good reading months go, November was definitely one of my top months this year, perhaps following August. I could go on, but all you have to do is just look at this list, and right away you’ll understand that there were some gems in here:

Carry On, by Rainbow Rowell

Dumplin’, by Julie Murphy

Side Effects May Vary, by Julie Murphy

A Step Toward Falling, by Cammie McGovern

Save Me, by Jenny Elliot

A Little Something Different, by Sandy Hall

First & Then, by Emma Mills

I mean GAHHH, how amazing does this list look? Now do you get why I was so excited about it?

The first book I read in the month of November was 517 pages of pure bliss! Rainbow Rowell’s much awaited Carry On was everything her fans would want, and even more. I admit, going into it I was dubious, because I wasn’t even sure that the whole idea of expanding Simon Snow’s world from little bits of fanfiction in Rowell’s Fangirl to canon was a good idea. How glad was I that I was proven wrong! Despite the multiple POVs, each character had a unique voice, and once again one of my favourite authors was able to put her magical storytelling abilities into such a wonderful novel! I am proud to say that Carry On has become one of my favourite fantasies this year, and it was even nominated for Best Young Adult Fantasy & Science Fiction on Goodreads!

The next book I read was critically-acclaimed Dumplin’, by Julie Murphy, and it was as every bit as awesome as all the reviews have suggested! Featuring a strong heroine, I engulfed the story of Willowdean Dickson, and what it means to be comfortable in your own skin, a novel that I believe every person should read, as every person has at one point not been at home with their body.

Because I read Dumplin’, I decided to read Julie Murhpy’s debut as well, Side Effects May Vary. I felt that it wasn’t as strong as her latest book, but nevertheless had a plotline that stole me away. I liked the characters, Alice and Harvey, and the way they had NOW and THEN point of views. It was a unique way of seeing a story come together from different sides (and times!) of the story.

A Step Toward Falling by Cammie McGovern was probably up there with Carry On, based on how much I loved it. Because (spoiler alert!) I loved it. All I wanted to do was gobble this up in one sitting, because the writing, the characters, the everything was just amazing. But most of all, it was the plotline that got to me, leaving me with the message that (as written on the cover): Sometimes the worst thing you can do is nothing at all.

Unfortunately, Save Me by Jenny Elliot was not one of the books I enjoyed this month. It was one I was looking forward to, as it was published by Swoon Reads, which so far has published books I have enjoyed so far. I felt that the writing was too flat, therefore making the characters and plotline flat as well. This combination just doesn’t bode well for me, and sadly took away from my reading experience.

A Little Something Different, by Sandy Hall, was also a Swoon Reads publishing. In fact, it was the first publishing of their firm. And unlike Save Me, it was an absolute delight to read, not to mention especially unique. It is a love story told from fourteen points of view, none of which contain those of the two falling in love. I just thought it was a brilliant way of storytelling, taking a really simple love story like that. All of the POVs, as well as the two love interests, were so fun to read about, and all in all this book was sweet and adorable. Definitely one of my favourites of the year!

The last book I read this month was from the debut author Emma Mills, First & Then. It wouldn’t surprise me if someone read this in one weekend, because that’s exactly what I did! The writing flowed smoothly and the story was cute, and that cover was gorgeous as well. I know that I’ll be looking forward to more by Emma Mills in the future!

That was all for the month of November, and stay tuned for more this month as this wonderful reading year draws to a close. Until then, keep on reading!

Zoie ❤