Saturday, December 28, 2019

Favourite Books of 2019

I haven't read many books this year.  I've read 44 books so far and will possibly finish another before the end of the year.  (Looking at what books I have completed though include three textbooks for  my HR course!)

Unlike previous years, 2019's reading habits features much more books aimed at adults and non-fiction books than ever.  But still, which are my favourite books read this year?  YA.  My heart will always be with you, YA.  So without further ado, here are my top three books read in 2019. 

Autoboyography by Christina Lauren 

This is the first book I read in 2019 and at the end of the year it has remained one of my favourites.  I even wrote a review of it earlier this year (I'm just as shocked as you are) but this one's about an openly bisexual boy who has to go back into the closet after his mom takes a job in a predominantly Mormon community.  He takes a seminar for creative writing and falls in love with another boy.  It's about this hugely adorable and swoon-worthy romance between these two but also about the power of words and story-telling and the exploration of identity, acceptance and sexuality.

Phantom Limbs by Paula Garner 

I am such a sucker for an emotional contemporary love story.  I won't apologise for that!  I loved Phantom Limbs and how much this story was about the relationships between the characters.  The main character is Otis and three years ago, his little brother died in a tragic accident that tore apart his family and around the same time his best friend moves away.  In order to cope with the grief, he turns to swimming and his mentored by ex-Olympic hopeful, Dara.  Then Meg comes back and Otis, Meg and Dara are left trying to deal with how to navigate this new situation.  This book was so emotional, the grief and confusion, heartbreak and friendship. 

With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo 

I read Elizabeth Acevedo's debut book this year as well, The Poet X, and that book also stole my heart.  But I preferred Emoni's story.  With a daughter to care for and only her abuela's help, Emoni has to face the realities of her world.  She wants to take the new culinary arts class at school, she'd love to go on the accompanying school trip to Spain but she has to balance her dreams with practicalities.  I really loved this one.  I thought Emoni was a brilliant character, I loved the descriptions of her cooking, her relationships with her daughter's father, her abuela, her best friend, the new love interest.  One of my favourite aspects of the book was also her relationship with her father who moved away and keeping up with that relationship which really touched on some of my own personal experiences.  I think I'll always pick up new books by Acevedo.

Well, who is surprised there?  All three books are contemporary.  They all feature a range of diverse characters in terms of religion, sexuality, race, and disability.  Bring on 2020 with more emotional contemporary stories. 

What were your favourite reads of 2019? 

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