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Thursday, January 3, 2019

My Favorite Reads of 2018

As the calendar changes to 2019, it's time again to put together the list of my favorite things I read in 2019.  This has always been a difficult task, and this year was no different.  I read so many good books this year by so many amazing authors.  I feel terrible when I have to narrow the list down to 10 (with a bonus 5 since I can't make up my mind) because I know I am leaving some incredible books off of this list.

I've said it before and I will say it again: This list could be completely different if I did it again tomorrow or the next day.  The order could be different.  The books on the list could be different.  As I said, it is so hard to narrow it down to this small of a number.  But I did and I'm going to put it out there.  The title of each book will be a link to my original post/review of the book if you want to go back and check out my full thoughts on any of these.

1. The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo
      -This was such an incredible book!  It deservedly won the National Book Award for YA Lit.  It is a story told in verse about finding your voice and discovering who you really are.  Phenomenal!!!

2. The Fall of Innocence by Jenny Torres Sanchez
     -This book will break you, but you will love every minute of it.  It is such a beautiful and tragic story.

3. SHOUT by Laurie Halse Anderson  
     -It's hard to say this with all the wonderful stuff Laurie has written, but this may be her masterpiece.  SHOUT is Anderson's story, told in free verse, and it is a reminder that we must no longer be silent in this world.  This is a 2019 release, but I was lucky enough to read it in 2018.

4. Hooper by Geoff Herbach  
     -Herbach gave us a story not only about basketball, but about so many other things like family, love, integrity, and compassion.  Such a great book!

5. Dig by A.S. King
      -As usual, I was blown away by A.S. King's newest novel.  She is such a unique voice and gives us another stunner with Dig, a story about our roots, and how we don't always have to be what seems destined for us.  Another 2019 release that I was fortunate enough to  get my hands on early.  

6. Monday's Not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson 
     -After Jackson's debut novel Allegedly, I was expecting big things from this novel.  It did not disappoint.  It is gritty and grimy and tragic, but beautiful at the same time.  I would read Jackson's grocery list if she published it.  

7. Blood Water Paint by Joy McCullough  
     -Another novel told in verse on this list.  This one is historical fiction about 17th century painter Artemisia Gentileschi and finding our voice in a world that doesn't always want to listen.  I can't recommend this one highly enough.  

8. Rabbit & Robot by Andrew Smith
     -A year with a new book by Andrew Smith is definitely a good reading year.  I love everything that Andrew writes and this was no exception.  If there was ever a book that screams Andrew Smith, it is Rabbit & Robot!

9. Hey, Kiddo by Jarrett J. Krosoczka
     -This incredible book is a memoir told in graphic novel form.  It tells of Krosoczka's childhood and the trials and tribulations he faced in growing up and the resiliency he showed in making it out.  Such an inspiring story.

10. A Land of Permanent Goodbyes by Atia Abawi
     -This is such a powerful and important book that tells of the dangers Syrian refugees face as they try to escape the war that has engulfed their everyday lives.  It should be an eye opener to so many.  

Honorable Mention (I had to find a way to get a few more books on this list):

Sadie by Courtney Summers
The Cheerleaders by Kara Thomas 
The Impossible Fortress by Jason Rekulak 
One of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus
After the Shot Drops by Randy Ribay 

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