31

All-Time Favorite Stand-Alones

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Hello, all! It’s Superbowl Sunday, as known to me as, “Wait, that’s today?” Sunday, because I couldn’t care less about football (I know, I’m betraying my fellow Americans).

So, continuing on with the trend of talking about some of my favorite bookish things, I thought I’d talk about my favorite stand-alones (I realized I had a hell of a lot more favorites than I thought I’d have on this list, and not all of them are mentioned)!

Note that I don’t mention all of my favorite stand-alones, so books such as Gone Girl, Night Film, The Ice Twins, etc. didn’t make it onto the list because it was already so long, and I feel like I’ve talked about them to death, but I’m sure you guys know about the ones not listed on here, so it’s not too bad. If you want to see more of my favorites, feel free to check this super old post out here!

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Simon vs the Homo-Sapiens Agenda

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Um, of course I’m going to have this adorable book on this list. I actually read this book in one day (probably because I really needed to know who Blue was), and it’s so wonderfully fluffy and cute and funny. Also, it mentioned Drarry, so ten points to Gryffindor!

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Looking for Alaska

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I don’t care what anyone else says, I’m a huge fan of John Green, and this book is still my favorites of his. Besides having a total girl crush on Alaska, I also love how this book dealt with a theme I didn’t think would be explored. Not to mention the quirky cast of characters, and the fact that this is probably one of Green’s best-written novel to date.

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Vicious

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Of course, here’s the Obligatory V.E. Schwab mention! This is probably my favorite book of hers, and probably one of my favorite books dealing with anti-heroes and superpowers. And I’m definitely Team Victor.

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Every Day

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This was my first book by Levithan, and it definitely wasn’t the last. This was such a beautiful, complex love story, and, yes, I want a proper sequel.

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Before I Fall

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Even though Lauren Oliver is a hit or miss author for me, her debut novel is still one of my favorite books ever. The writing is stunning and the character development and original concept is what makes this book so great. And I teared up reading this book so many times.

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The Troop

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This wonderfully disgusting book is still one of my favorites, and you can see its discussion here! I fell in love with horror last year, and this is probably still my favorite one out there (I haven’t read a Stephen King book yet; I’m sorry!). It’s gross and it’s violent, but it also gave me so many feels because I loved these boys (most of them, at least). And the ending was spot-on as well.

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Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock

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THIS BOOK IS AN UNDERRATED MASTERPIECE. I highly recommend going into this blind (I was unfortunately spoiled before I read this, of course), and just letting it take you on the journey because it’s so raw and real and so very sad. It’s definitely a dark book, and, warning: it doesn’t have a happy ending, but it’s so brilliant.

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Eleanor & Park

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I actually read this book around the time it came out, and I absolutely loved it. It was such a beautiful look at first love between two awkward protagonists just trying to make I through another day. And that ending is still one of my favorites to this day.

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The Fault in Our Stars

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What’s a “Favorites” list without this one on it? Of course I loved TFiOS. And to those saying Augustus was too pretentious and unreal, that’s the point. /rant over/

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Big Little Lies

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Look at me; I finally read a popular book that came out years ago! I’m not too excited for the HBO show since it seems to have missed the entire point of the book, but I love how funny, but serious it is, especially since it deals with sexual abuse and domestic violence. Also, it’s highly addicting. I felt like I was a PTA mom myself reading this.

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All Is Not Forgotten

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So many people don’t like this book, but I loved it. I read it in a day last year, and its such a powerful book that deals with the rape of a fifteen-year-old girl. Some of my favorite quotes came from this book, and I love how effed-up the entire novel was since we get it only from the perspective of Dr. Erskine.

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Ten

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YA mysteries and thrillers sometimes tend to miss the mark, in my opinion, but this one really impressed me! It’s loosely based off of Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None (which I haven’t read) and managed to not only be tense, but really surprise me with its murderer, had a great, smart heroine, and a romance that I actually shipped and wasn’t cheesy!

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I’m Thinking of Ending Things

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More of my thoughts on this weird book here!

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Aristotle & Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe

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This was actually the first book I ever read in one whole day, and I’m glad it has that standing. It’s such a touching novel about the friendship (and eventual romance) between two boys and it’s so sad but beautiful and cute and just asdfghjkl!

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More Happy Than Not

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I’m sure you’re tired of hearing how awesome Adam Silvera is, but he’s freaking awesome, and his debut novel is fantastic. I just love how it talks about depression and the mash-up of a sci-fi and contemporary was so cool.

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Two Boys Kissing

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And another contemporary penned by David Levithan! I actually consider this my favorite of his at the moment, and there are just so many fantastic quotes in it and it’s so poignant and all the feels!

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The Night Circus

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Ah, yes, my first ever adult book! I actually bought this when I was twelve but read two pages of it and wrote it off as bad, but picked up again last year because my taste has changed since then, and fell in love. I know some people feel it’s too slow and boring and doesn’t live up to its premise, but to me, it was gorgeous.

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Draw the Line

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Again, we have another cute, fluffy book with a gay protagonist that made my heart sing. I swear to God, I was smiling like a dork through the entire book. It also deals with the homophobia that gay people face in the South sometimes and how gross it is that people aren’t held accountable for it. It’s such a beautiful, underrated book. Plus, the main couple is ADORABLE.

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How to Repair a Mechanical Heart, Dark Matter, & The Song of Achilles

All three of these books made it to my Best of 2016 list, and I’ll just leave it here if you want to check out more of my thoughts on these beauties!

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Wonder

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This is probably one of my favorite middle grade novels ever. I’m not really a huge fan of middle grade nowadays, but back when I read this, I was probably twelve or thirteen, and I devoured it in a day. It’s so heart-breaking to see how Auggie is treated, but I loved how his sister loved him and how he had fantastic friends that loved him. So good.

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And that’s (mostly) it for my favorite stand-alones of all time! Who knew that I was obsessed with so many stand-alones of all different genres and age ranges?

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What are some of your favorite stand-alones? Do we share any of the same ones? 

52

My All-Time Favorite Series

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So, it’s February, the month that holds Valentine’s Day, the holiday of love! So, I thought that it’d be fun this month to do all the things talking about book boyfriends and all of the bookish things I love, and what better way to start then talking about my favorite series! I’ll guess that most of these will be repetitive to you if you’ve been here since the beginning, but let’s begin anyway!

(Also, note, there are no links to descriptions because most of these series are pretty damn popular, so I don’t think you guys need to read the description for the 34498018410840 time.)

(And another note: if you think you’ve seen this earlier today, you did. I attempted to post this earlier, but for some reason, WordPress keeps posting some of my posts days back so it doesn’t show up in anyone’s newsfeeds and gets completely lost, so I decided to put this one back in Draft and Re-Publish it again. If anyone has gone through this problem/knows how to fix it, feel free to talk to me, because it’s driving me nuts.)

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The Raven Cycle

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Okay, so a lot of people are on The Raven Cycle hype train ever since it just got super popular out of nowhere and Maggie Stiefvater became one of the Coolest Authors Alive, BUT THIS SERIES. It makes me so happy to read about the Gangsey and all the beautiful Pynch moments and laugh at all the jokes and deadpan humor and be filled with wonder at the magical world Stiefvater has created. This is one of those book series where I would literally love to be transported in.

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The Throne of Glass Series

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Everyone should know that I’m one Sarah J. Maas’s biggest fangirls and that this series completely and totally changed my life. Never have I ever been so involved in a series, especially the romance (Rowaelin shipper for life, if you care that much). I just love how strong the ladies are, and the ships are all so wonderful because all the boys respect everyone and treat them like their equals! This is probably my most hated series on this list but #hatersgonnahate.

(Also, did you hear? TOG #6 is being delayed until next year, specifically May of 2018 because of some health issues Sarah’s having! Hopefully, she’s okay; that’s what really matters to me – plus I still haven’t read EOS yet.)

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Harry Potter

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I don’t think this needs an explanation, but Harry! The Golden Trio! Amazing quotes! All the feels! Nostalgia! The characters! The magic! Ravenclaw!

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Percy Jackson and the Olympians & The Heroes of Olympus

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And neither does this one. But Percy! Greek Mythology! Leo! Nico! Diversity! Annabeth! All the ships! Rick Riordan is a total BAMF!

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The Six of Crows Duology

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This is the book series that has made me obsessed with heists in fantasy novels. Damn you, Bardugo. But, seriously, I love the beautiful world of Ketterdam and the characters are just absolutely delightful. Literally, try to ask a fan who their favorite character is. They can’t give you one because they’re all so precious.

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The Young Elites

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I also love Lu’s Legend trilogy, but fantasy is my Achilles’ heel. I jus loved the idea of exploring anti-heroes, and, of course she aced the characters, and Magiano is absolutely precious. I demand more series written about anti-heroes in the future.

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Shades of Magic

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This was a book (and an author) that hadn’t been recommended to me for so long that I eventually caved last year, and I haven’t looked back. I loved ADSOM, but AGOS was even better, if that’s possible. The cast of characters is so small, but so vibrant, and Schwab’s writing just makes it all the better.

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The ACOTAR Trilogy

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Again, I’m an SJM fangirl. And after reading ACOMAF, this definitely solidified its place as one of my favorite series. I mean, who doesn’t want to be Feyre? Who doesn’t want to be a part of the Night Court? WHO?? Also, I love how wonderfully feminist this series is, and I think it’s highly important for girls to learn about abusive relationships and how to be brave enough to leave them and how you don’t have to suffer through depression alone and male sexual abuse and THESE BOOKS ARE SO IMPORTANT.

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The Unwind Dystology

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I think I’ve explained enough in about a million different posts about why I love this series so much, so I’ll just leave you with the simple sentiment to READ IT!

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The Original Mortal Instruments Trilogy

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Ok, I’m not the biggest fan of the last three books that were tacked on to the original TMI trilogy (if you didn’t know, way back in the day, the series was originally supposed to end at City of Glass, but she ended up writing three more books), but I loved this series the first time I read it back in seventh grade, and I re-read it last year and I still loved it. Malec was the original gay OTP, and nothing has changed from that (except the fact that I have even more gay OTPs).

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The Red Rising Trilogy

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This is such a good series. It’s a very sci-fi heavy read on a completely different planet with a system where people’s status is determined by their colors. It’s super intense and super violent (which might put off some people, but certainly not me) and Sevro is perfect, and the world-building is amazing, and Darrow is perfect and hot, and the speeches are fantastic, and the ladies are badass, and it’s literally everything. Plus, the author’s hot, so, there’s that.

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The Lunar Chronicles

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I’m pretty sure this is on everyone’s lists, but it’s just that good! I love the divers even cast of female characters, and the perfection of all the male characters (especially Thorne, who is MINE!) and the humor and the action. It’s just the perfect blend of everything and such a good series for those making the transition from Middle Grade to YA.

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The Captive Prince Trilogy

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I love nothing more than a good gay romance, and since Tumblr goes nuts recommending this series, I just had to. I finally bought them, and though they were super expensive for ebooks, they were totally worth it. Politics, war, slow-burn romance, sass, and the perfection of the Damen and Laurent ship. It’s pretty much everything I wanted from the Winner’s trilogy by Marie Rutkoski except more adult and much better.

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The Penryn and the End of Days Trilogy

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If you’ve been on Goodreads, you might have heard of how this series swept the website back when it was first self-published. I had to join in the hype, and I finally read it, and it was so brilliant! What’s better than a slow-burn hate to love romance between Penryn and Raffe? Literally nothing. I loved the sisterly bond and the angel lore was just so interesting. Just read this series. You won’t regret it.

The Hunger Games Trilogy

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And last, but certainly not least, the Hunger Games trilogy. No explanation needed.

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And that’s it for my all-time favorite series! Of course, I haven’t mentioned all my favorite series – there are still more that I just didn’t mention in this post – so there’ll probably be a Part 2 sometime in the future, but these are some of my favorites for now!

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What are some of your favorite series? Do we share any of the same ones (if we do, feel free to fangirl)?

6

Best of 2016

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If you knew me at all, you would know that I’m one of those people that waits until the New Year comes in until I compile my list of the Best and Worst of the year, mainly because I’m worried about these two situations:

A. “This book was the BEST book I’ve ever read in my entire life, but I didn’t wait until the New Year to compile my list, and it’s December 31st, ten minutes before midnight, and I’ve already compiled my list so no will hear my raves! NOOOOO!”

or

B. “This book was the absolute WORST book I’ve read this year, but I didn’t wait until the New Year to compile my list, and it’s December 31st, ten minutes before midnight, and I’ve already compiled my list so no one will hear my rants! NOOOOO!”

But, this year is a little different. I admit, I’ve been completely slacking this month on reading, mainly because I’ve been working on this blog and also, I over-reached my goal by around 80-90 books, so I’m treating myself. So, I decided it’d be harmless to go ahead and post my Top 10 Best and Worst of 2016 posts this week.

(Let’s hope and pray that a better or worst book doesn’t come along and overthrow my entire plan.)

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Dark Matter

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If that blurb doesn’t pull you in, I don’t know what will. But, seriously, this book was one of the biggest surprises of this year. I didn’t expect anything that happened nor did I think I’d get so absorbed in it as I did. I’m a sucker for speculative sci-fi – sort of like the brilliant TV show Black Mirror – and this one didn’t fail to please me. Not to mention that it had a little bit of a love story, and though I’m one to groan and roll my eyes if romances are included in genres they don’t belong in, I really enjoyed this one. And the ending was brilliant, though open-ended. I can’t speak any more praises.

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Into the Darkest Corners

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This summer I discovered a new favorite genre: thrillers. And I’ve realized that one of my favorite types is “The Evil Boyfriend.” Nothing is more annoying than seeing a psychopath get away with his obsessive love, but it’s also a little entertaining (even though that sounds awful). Out of all the ones I’ve read, this one has definitely held up as the best of the bunch. Not only  was it completely addicting, but I loved the budding romance between Stuart and Cathy, and it was definitely interesting to get Before and After POVs. It was actually quite scary how similar Lee was to some of the so-called “heroes” of NA romance novels, and definitely shed light on domestic abuse.

(Also, that letter at the end? CHILLS!)

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A Monster Calls

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CAN I SAY TEARS? While watching the Mrs. Peregrine’s movie, I saw a trailer for the movie adaptation of this book, and actually teared up. At that point, I hadn’t actually READ the book yet, but a couple weeks later, I did, and after finishing it, I was emotionally drained. Not only are the tales gorgeous, but the writing is truly beautiful,  with Conor’s emotions practically bleeding through the pages. Not to mention the great relationship shared between the monster and Conor. It’s such a fantastic book, and I highly recommend it. Not to mention that the movie looks perfect.

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The Ice Twins

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Before reading this, I was in a sort of slump-y mood. I picked this one up on a whim, and the first two or three chapters were simply “meh.” I was ready to put it down, but then it started to get really good, and before I knew it, I was on this crazy addictive roller coaster. I mean, is there anything creepier than twins, especially ones claiming to be a dead one? A really good horror-thriller!

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How to Repair a Mechanical Heart

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THIS WAS SO CUTE! This was one of those hidden gems that just popped up out of nowhere. I highly recommend for those who were huge fans of Fangirl and Carry On, and want something a little bit gayer. The romance between Brandon and Abel was so cute, and the little twist that gets thrown in a little bit into the book makes it even better. The book is genuinely funny – I haven’t laughed so hard reading a book in a long while – but also manages to balance the serious side, with Brandon constantly struggling being gay when he’s been basically brainwashed to think what he’s doing is wrong. It really is a beautiful book, and I highly recommend.

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Gone Girl

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How could I start reading thrillers this year and not read one of the most famous thrillers in most recent years? This was actually the third Gillian Flynn book I read – Sharp Objects and Dark Places are both shorter, so I read them quicker – and, stereotypically, my favorite of hers. Even though I’m one to hate guys like Nick Dunne in domestic thrillers, he’s just so…likable? Annoying, but likeable. It also introduced me to Amy Dunne, probably one of my top female characters ever, and one of my favorite women in thrillers. And the famous “Cool Girl” quote is now my feminist anthem. The movie is probably one of my favorite book-to-movie adaptations I’ve ever watched, and will now be the standards adaptations have to reach (sorry!).

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Night Film

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This was my first foray into the first thriller I fell in love with. Scott is the detective who feels like he’s lost it all, and I absolutely loved his character development throughout the novel. Hopper and Nora, the other two main characters who end up going along with the mystery of Ashley Cordova, and the little group they created was so beautiful. I was surprised to find myself welling up  with tears as they said their good-byes. The mystery surrounding Ashley Cordova was absolutely consuming, pulling you in and refusing to let you go. In the end, you don’t really get an answer to the mystery, which might bother others, but that was what was so great about it. The fact that though we as people like to make up stories, sometimes, what happened was painfully ordinary. And the unique format of the book with pictures and blog posts made it immersive as well.

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The Song of Achilles

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This book was utterly painful to read. In a good way. If you know anything about the story of Achilles, you know that he dies at the end. So, basically, you get to read this gorgeous love story that ultimately leads to death, and you’re well aware of it. But you still read it anyway. The romance between Achilles and Patroclus was so beautiful and so sweet and so fluffy that I couldn’t stop smiling. Seeing the character development of Achilles is also sad to watch, as he distances himself from the only person that loves him, and the final 100 pages were just pure pain and tears, but the ending was beautiful, in its own way?

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Dangerous Girls

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I have never been so emotionally invested in a book in my life. I’m one to throw my emotions into a book if it’s really good, which also means I’ll rant a lot in my head and talk to myself (I swear, not crazy). And boy, was I into this one. I was cheering so hard for Anna, who is blamed as the murderer of her best friend, especially since everyone was basically against her. But on the other hand, we have Tate, her boyfriend, who I like to refer to as “Satan’s Handsome Brother,” but whatever. It was really nice to see how the judicial system can work for and against someone, and how easily lying and cheating can come around. I also really loved the journalism aspect shown, and how media can play a huge part in how people’s opinion changes. I didn’t see the end of this one coming, and it definitely ruined the other YA thrillers I read this year.

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The Troop

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This was the grossest book I’ve probably read ever. And I honestly don’t think I’ll read a grosser book in my lifetime. Nick Cutter has a way with words that make you cringe and gape at the pages (which I did both profusely as I read this). You get so easily attached to the boys (okay, two of them are pretty bad, but the other three are great), and cheer them on. And it’s really sickening how the scientists and army handle the situation as the boys suffer. And, again, with a chilling ending (I’m a sucker for those).

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And that’s it for my Top 10 Books of 2016! Of course, I read SO many fantastic books this year (and I’ll hopefully continue to read more since it’s not over yet), but these were just some of my very, very favorites!

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What were some of your favorite books this year?