Top of the Wednesday to ya! Have I used that opening before? I don’t know. All I know is I’m using it today. Anyway, today’s topic is the top five best books we’ve read so far this year. Despite reading less content, I’ve read some great content. But what are the best books I’ve read? Well, let’s not beat around the bush and get right into it, shall we:
- If We Were Villains by M.L Rio
This book is So. Good. The characters, the relationships, the mystery, the ENDING?! All fantastic. This book is about a group of theatre students in their final year of college. For three years, they’ve played the same roles offstage as they have onstage and have formed good-natured rivalries. But suddenly these rivalries turn dark and tragedy comes calling. Now the group must convince the cops— and each other— of their innocence. I really love how a lot of the dialogue is formatted like a play. In fact, the entire novel makes intentional use of Shakespeare’s classic tragedy format. This book is so addicting, I never wanted to put it down. In fact, I think I already found what will be one of my favorite books of the year. I just… WOW. In fact, this is the only book on this list whose placement matches how I feel about it. It truly is the best book I’ve read so far this year.
- The City of Brass by S.A. Chakraborty
I loved this book so much. The character development is on point, the world-building inventive, and the plot delicious. I love Nahri, Dara, and Ali. I wanted to badly to go to Daevabad and live in the world of djinn, daeva, and shafit. Not only that, but it’s an Own Voices novel. I covered the bulk of my thoughts in my review, but I could sing this book’s praises for pages upon pages— it was that good. I cannot wait for the sequel. Not only is this book great, but it was my first five out of five star read of the year.
- Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer
I did not expect to love this book as much as I do. It’s so mysterious and creepy. The balance between the suspenseful present and informative flashbacks was really well done. I also really like how none of the characters have names and are instead defined by their professions. It forces you to consider the characters and their points of view in a different way. This novel was genuinely fascinating. In fact, this is the first time I’ve been excited to keep reading a book in a while. I’ll definitely be continuing on with the series. In fact, I plan to do so this month.
- Lair of Dreams by Libba Bray
When it comes to sequels I read this year, this one is hard to beat. This series is about a group of kids in New York City, living it up during the Roaring Twenties. However, many of them have psychic powers. Each book has its own Big Bad, but it’s clearly building up to something even bigger. This book made me love the characters more than the first one did. The relationships between each of them are enhanced so much in this novel. But that’s not all! It includes some fun tropes like the fake dating trope and really does the work to expand the world-building. It’s also incredibly diverse and handles issues such as being gay or a person of color in early 20th Century America with care. It’s very apparent Bray did her research. This novel is smart, funny, and heartfelt all at once. I can’t wait to get my hands on the next one!
- The Rose Society by Marie Lu
Even though this was a reread, I still have to count this book. I mean, not to use old, outdated lingo, but this book has me SHOOK. It follows Adelina Amouteru, a illusion worker descending into villainy and madness. It’s so intriguing reading a story in which you actively root for the bad guy to win. I’ve only just begun my reread of The Midnight Star, but I know in my soul this is the best book in the series. Adelina is at her best by being at her worst. I also really love how powers are dealt with in this story, the result of a terrible disease. Are these powers good or are they bad? Lu seeks to explore that in this series. But this novel is a fun ride in which we don’t have to worry about the consequences just yet. All we want is to see Adelina on the Kenettran throne.
What are the best books you’ve read so far this year? Tell me about them in the comments!
Happy Fourth of July, everyone!