Bookish Ramblings: My Top 10 Reads of the 2018!

2018 has been a great year for reading!  It saw the conclusion of the Throne of Glass Series and the start of plenty of new adventures!  Full to bursting with fairytale retellings and diverse voices, it’s fair to say I loved A LOT of what I read this year!  How much did I love it? I smashed my Goodreads Challenge of 75 and i’m now well into the 80’s!  I know that it’s not a lot in comparison with other bloggers but I feel like I really devoured every word on every page.  Narrowing down just 10 has been the real challenge though and as with last year these will be books that were new to me in 2018 not all newly published in 2018.

Throne of Glass Series

This is a series that needs no introduction but it’s also a series that I read through all for the first time this year.  I was so glad I did because I was then so ready for Kingdom of Ash when It arrived! Sarah J Maas really pulled on all my emotions again with this series, I have to say I felt pretty wrung out at the end of Empire of Storms. It was a series that seldom faltered and dealt sensitively with a number of issues including mental health and also championed respectful relationships, which I loved.  I’m sad to see the end of these characters, we went through a lot together over many books but ultimately I’m pretty happy with how it all turned out! Whilst I didn’t individually review every book I did do a bit of a wrap up at the end of Empire of Storms which you can find here.

State of Sorrow

This was a real surprise for me, Melinda Salisbury was an author that I had not read before and State of Sorrow came in a Fairyloot box earlier in the year.  I have to admit that it did sit on my shelf for a long time, I didn’t find the cover particularly inspiring and I knew a few people didn’t enjoy it – I shouldn’t have listened! State of Sorrow was a beautifully crafted tale full of twists that I have to admit, I didn’t see coming.  I found it pretty empowering and a insightful take on women picking up the pieces whilst being judged on the things that make us human.  You can find my 5 star review here

Grace and Fury

I had kind of got to the point with fairyloot where I just had to accept that for the most part their selected reads just didn’t float my boat.  When Grace and Fury appeared in my July box I thought it would be more of the same and pretty tropey, chalk and cheese sisters etc  but Tracy Banghart proved me wrong.  Grace and Fury was full of twists and misdirection for one sister and for the other full of dystopian Hunger Games style survival, I loved every page and you can guarantee book 2 will make my 2019 anticipated list.  Click here for my full review

Seared

If there is one thing that Bethany Adams can do, it is to write beautifully (she can do many things beautifully of course but for this context lets focus on her writing)  I never fully realise how much I miss being in her world until I get wrapped back up in her books again. Seared is the continuation of her Return of the Elves series and whilst I can’t say too much for fear of spoilers (as a lot has gone on in earlier books) it has plenty of magic and romance and Ralan may even overtake Kai in my affections! My full review can be found here, but be mindful.

Vampire Hearts

Taking me outside of my usual comfort zone this is full on vampire fiction. I never really got caught up in the Twilight generation so vampires were often on the periphery of my reading material. But with Vampire Hearts came Katie M John who is one of the most inspirational people I have ever met, so in support of her new release I gave it a go and oh my wow I was blown away. Great characters, fantastic back stories, intriguing big bads and slow burns, everything I love (and I do love a good slow burn romance) To find out more about why I loved it so much you can find my review here.

Infection by M.P MacDonald

Another book that was on my kindle TBR for an inexcusable amount of time. This is an absolutely wonderful example of Day 1 apocalypse. Told from multiple points of view of members of the same family it’s a race to not only find safety but also each other – each party has very different experiences of what is going on in the world and each is told with the same heart stopping pace.  I really need to try and catch up further with this in 2019 as I have missed reading full on dystopia this year, if it sounds like your thing too then you can find my full review here.

Scythe

Just wow, full of originality and proving that dystopia can still exist in a utopian world, a unique take on an interesting premise – how do you keep a the population manageable in a world where everyone can live forever but yet still procreate? As you can guess from the title there are going to be some tough moments to read but it travels to some very interesting places with how each scythe takes their responsibilities ranging from humanitarian to God complex, there’s a real twist and kicker to it as well which was amazing. Find out more in my review here

Allerleirauh

I’ve read a few books now by Chantal Gadoury and honestly for me, they either hit the mark or they don’t. Her main focus this year has been on retellings and her take on this Brothers Grimm tale really hit the mark spot on. It’s one of their lesser known tales and I think it did very much benefit from that, for many (including myself) it will feel fresh. This story doesn’t pull any punches and it goes to some very dark places that I actually found pretty shocking.  However those parts are kept brief and the wonderful storytelling then gets to shine through. here’s the link to my review.

The Lunar Chronicles

So a slight cheat in that I did read Cinder in December 2017 but the other 3 in the series I caught up on in 2018. I’m pretty sure that the Lunar Chronicles is now my favourite series of all time, the Rampion Crew give me serious squad goals!  It’s a wonderful series full of fun, yet fraught with danger, focusing on friendship over relationships it really felt like a step outside of a lot of YA fantasy, the sci-fi element of course helped! I didn’t review each book individually but I did write a series round up post which you can find here.

Muse of Nightmares

Beautiful, lyrical, heartbreaking. Muse of Nightmares did not disappoint – I feel that I should have re-read Strange the Dreamer before I started though as it goes pretty much straight in where Strange left off and I found myself really stretching the memory banks in a couple of places. Muse is told in a wonderful parallel that left me lost for words and feeling pretty emotional! You can find my review here, but it’s likely to be spoilery if you’ve not read Strange the Dreamer yet.

There were so many other great books that I and the review team read this year and if you click on the reviews link on the side bar (you’ll have to scroll down a bit) you can find out all about them them and hopefully find your first read for the new year!

What did you think of the list, what made your top reads this year?

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