Top 18 of 2018

Hello, everyone! I don’t like making lists that talk badly about some of the books I didn’t enjoy because they could be favorites of others. So, to avoid the negativity, I’m going with a simple top books of the year list! I read some pretty awesome books last year, so I’m excited to share! Not all of these came out in 2018 either, and I’m not counting rereads. I want this list to consist of anything that I read for the first time in 2018.

Just to clarify – these are also going to be in the order of when I read them, not in the order of how much I liked them. long-page-break

1. The Cruel Prince & The Wicked King by Holly Black

Star Rating: 5 out of 5 stars 

It’s fitting that the first book I read in 2018 also happened to be one of my favorites. I’m sure by now you all have heard and/or read Cruel Prince, and Wicked King actually comes out in just 4 days! This series just keeps getting better, and I’m dying a little inside every day until I can get my hands on the third one.

2. Starry Eyes by Jenn Bennett

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Star Rating: 4 out of 5 stars 

I really loved Jenn’s first book, Alex Approximately, so it only makes sense that I’d enjoy her second. I liked the setting and characters of this story a lot, and I look forward to her other releases!

3. The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert

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Star Rating: 4 out of 5 stars 

This one was hit or miss for a lot of people. Personally, I really enjoyed it. I liked the magical forest and the incorporation of the fantasy stories scattered throughout. I’m super excited to get a release of just the stories mentioned sometime soon too!

4. The Art of Feeling by Laura Tims

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Star Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

I feel like this one went under the radar for a lot of people. I hadn’t heard of it until I randomly saw it suggested to me on Amazon. I took a chance, and I actually really liked it. The characters all felt very real, and I think everything wrapped up nicely in the end.

5. Simon Vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertali

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Star Rating: 4 out of 5 stars 

Ashley and I listened to the audiobook of this one on our way home from her mom’s house in Cincinnati earlier in the year. We knew we wanted to see the movie, so I’m glad we read the book first! I highly recommend the audiobook, the narrator does a great job. Simon is snarky, and you can’t help but love him and his story.

6. The Shatter Me series by Tahereh Mafi

Star Rating: (average) 4.25 out of 5 stars 

I was familiar with this series before 2018, but I never got around to actually reading it until just right before the release of Restore Me in March. I’m a GIANT Warner fan now, and I can’t wait to see what happens in book five! I think it might hurt me a little.

7. Heart of Iron by Ashley Poston

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Star Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars 

This one was pitched as Anastasia in space, so I was instantly sold. I have read Poston’s contemporary book, but I prefer fantasy, so I decided to start with this one. I enjoyed it, and I’ve heard the sequel might make me sad. I’m not sure how I feel about that. Also, I will go down defending the fact that his name is Di (like the letter D) because his name is Dmitri for crying out loud.

8. Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

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Star Rating: 5 out of 5 stars 

The hype was strong with this one, and I’m happy to say that it lived up to it for me. I’m really excited to see if Tomi can keep up with that hype and deliver on book two come March!

9. To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo

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Star Rating: 4 out of 5 stars 

I don’t think a lot of people gave much attention to this release. I really enjoyed it, and I loved the complexity of the main character. Was she good? Was she evil? It was hard to tell at times, and I loved it.

10. Emergency Contact by Mary H.K. Choi

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Star Rating: 5 out of 5 stars 

I keep talking about this one, but that’s because it felt so real to me. I thought the characters said and did things that anyone in real life would, and that’s what makes a contemporary for me. I’ll definitely check out anything else Mary writes.

11. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

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Star Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars 

I read this one so I could go see the movie – spoiler alert: don’t see the movie. The book is FAR better than that trash film. I really loved the nostalgic feel of the story, and I was really rooting for Wade.

12. Strange the Dreamer Muse of Nightmares by Laini Taylor

Star Rating: 5 out of 5 stars 

It feels strange to me, no pun intended, that I read this for the first time last year because it feels like I’ve loved it for so long. This duology is perfect for any fantasy fan, and I can’t recommend it enough. I’ve made friends read it – and they’ve all enjoyed it – and I tell customers at work to buy it all the time. Just do yourself a favor and pick it up.

13. An Ember in the Ashes series by Sabaa Tahir

Star Rating: 5 out of 5 stars 

The same situation happened with this series that happened with the Shatter Me ones. I knew Reaper was coming out, so I binged the whole series. Let me tell you, it’s amazing. The world is great, the plot is intriguing, and Elias is my little baby. Nothing better happen to him in book four, Sabaa. I’ll come for you.

14. Beyond a Darkened Shore by Jessica Leake

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Star Rating: 4 out of 5 stars 

Ashley and I buddy-read this one, and we both really liked it! The main love interest does seem a bit holier-than-thou, but other than that, it’s a solid read. The magic elements are what really sold me on it.

15. Ash Princess by Laura Sebastian

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Star Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars 

I don’t think this one got enough love last year. I really enjoyed Theo’s journey throughout the first book, and I’m curious to see where book two will take us. The ending of the first left things a bit all over the place (in a good way), so I’m sure book two will pick up there and be awesome.

16. Legendary by Stephanie Garber

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Star Rating: 5 out of 5 stars 

I absolutely loved Caraval when I read it back in 2017, so I was super pumped for this sequel. Let me tell you, it was better. I didn’t think it could be possible, but I actually really loved Tella’s story more than Scarlett’s. I’m hyped to see the two girls come together in Finale later this year, and I honestly have no idea where the story is going to go.

17. Wicked Saints by Emily A. Duncan

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Star Rating: 5 out of 5 stars 

Everyone is super excited for this release in April, and guys, it’s deserving. I went into this with super low expectations because of the hype, but it was so good. I loved all the characters, and the plot is captivating. Things would happen, and I would actually gasp. Just do yourselves a favor and preorder this bad boy.

18. Four Dead Queens by Astrid Scholte

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Star Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars 

BookCon 2018 was apparently a disaster when it came to the drop for this book. Penguin said they were dropping a surprise 2019 ARC, but Ashley and I left NYC that morning and missed it. Looking back, I’m glad we did because it turned into a madhouse. Thankfully, I was able to do a quick trade on Twitter for this, and I’m glad I did! The story blends together fantasy and mystery so well, and I felt like I was right in the middle of the “whodunnit” the whole time.

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That’s all, folks! I hope some of these books made your favorites of 2018 as well, and here’s to reading a bunch of great ones in 2019!

Until next time,

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What was your favorite book of 2018? Let me know in the comments below!


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