Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday, a book blog tag hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! Today's topic is a Halloween freebie (Happy Halloween!). I've been working hard at this one, and I'm happy to present, today, my Top Ten YA Horror Novels! Plenty of chills and thrills below. So check it out!
1) Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake. This is an oft-recommended YA horror novel, and for good reason. Blake's tale of a teen ghost hunter facing a haunting like no other alongside his brand new (not always welcome) friends is both well-written and engaging. It's definitely reminiscent of Supernatural.
2) The Girl From the Well by Rin Chupeco. I've mentioned before that Chupeco is one of the most oddly brilliant writers I've read. This is well-shown in her most famous book, a YA horror about a Japanese-American boy with a murderous ghost attached to him. It's reminiscent of The Ring, but a little more cultural and less gory.
3) Shutter by Courtney Alameda. This book also features monster hunters; in this case, a tough-but-tragic teen girl who captures ghosts on film with the help of her trusty teammates, all part of a long legacy of hunters. It's intriguing, engaging, and at times, heartbreaking.
Today I'm doing the Netflix Book Tag, as found here on Ana Loves, where I share book recommendations based off of common Netflix categories! Check it out.
Recently Watched: The last book you finished reading
A few hours ago, I finished The Bad Seed by William March. It's a classic thriller that I saw referenced a few places, so I figured I'd read it myself. It was pretty decent. A little fancier/more old-fashioned on the language than I expected, but an interesting read. However, the last book I read that I would recommend is Shutter by Courtney Alameda. It's a YA horror novel with a really intriguing central concept and some tough characters.
Top Picks: A book recommended to you based on your favorite reads
Apparently, no bookish blog post by me is complete without a mention of Marissa Meyer's The Lunar Chronicles. I read so much and so widely, at least in the YA sector, that it's hard to recommend anything to me that isn't already on my list, but a friend of mine originally recommended this YA sci-fi fairytale retelling. I'm really glad that she did.
Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday, a book blog tag hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! Today I'm going into the archives and next up is the Top Ten Books Outside My Comfort Zone. Now, I've already posted my Top Ten YA Historical Fiction Novels, which is one of my non-comfort areas, and my Top Ten Book Club Reads, which include many books I never would've chosen on my own. So today I thought I'd post my Top Ten Adult Novels. I don't read (modern) adult novels nearly as much as I do YA, but ever since the Cormoran Strike books were revealed to be by J.K. Rowling, I have started reading some. Here are my favorites!
1) Such a Pretty Face by Cathy Lamb. This adult contemporary is a really thought-provoking, beautiful, and sometimes humorous story about a woman confronting her family issues in the wake of weight-loss surgery. I've recommended it on my social media in the past.
2) World War Z by Max Brooks. Y'all know that I'm a big fan of nontraditional formats (and of fantasy/sci-fi stuff), and even though zombies aren't my thing, I totally loved this adult zombie apocalypse tale! The formatting got me.
Before today's post, I wanted to let y'all know that I'm changing my posting schedule. This will be my last Saturday post! (At least for now.) I've posted a lot of what I want to say here, and I don't have a lot of new ideas, so posting two-sometimes-three times a week is a bit too much. Instead, I'm gonna switch to posting two times every week, on Tuesday and Wednesday. Wednesday posts will be "Waiting On" or Wordy Wednesdays; Tuesdays will be Top Ten Tuesdays some weeks, and the rest of the time, my own original posts. Let me know if there are any posts or topics you'd like to see from me, check out my Recommended Posts page, and we shall move on to the Hamilton Book Tag as seen here, where I pick books for prompts based off of various songs from the fantastic Broadway musical Hamilton!
Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday, a book blog tag hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! Today's topic is a Throwback Freebie, so I thought I'd go back to before I was sharing my best YA books of the year on here and share my choices for the Top Ten Best YA Books of 2012. There were a lot of great releases in 2012, from a lot of my favorite series, so this was a hard list for me to narrow down!
1) Unwholly by Neal Shusterman. This is the second book in the Unwind Dystology, which, as y'all know by now, is one of my top favorite YA sci-fi dystopian series, about a world where unruly teenagers are subject to "unwinding," a process in which their bodies are taken apart to use for organ donation. It's very well-written, with thorough and fascinating worldbuilding.
2) Cinder by Marissa Meyer. I recommend The Lunar Chronicles very often here, for many different reasons, and as it turns out, the first book of this YA sci-fi fairytale retelling came out in 2012! If you haven't read it yet, do.
Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday, a book blog tag hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! Today's topic is our Top Ten Hidden Gems in ______ Genre. I'm feeling like Fantasy, so here are ten YA fantasy novels that I think deserve more attention.
1) Victoria Schwab's Monsters of Verity. This strange YA fantasy duology takes place in a world where violent acts breed monsters. It follows two teens with powerful parents who rule a divided town overrun by these monsters. It's an unassuming story, more character than plot driven, but absolutely beautiful. Victoria Schwab is definitely an author to keep your eye on when it comes to fantasy. Her Archived trilogy is another great YA fantasy that deserves more attention.
2) Jodi Meadows's Newsoul Trilogy. This lush and gorgeous YA fantasy takes place in a world where every person has been reincarnated into new bodies multiple times over--except for the main character, who is new. It has a strong romantic aspect and dragons and phoenixes, and I highly recommend that you read it. It deserves so much love!
Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday, a book blog tag hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! Today, I'm going into the archives to share my Top Ten YA Novels About Tough Issues. These issues include abuse, sexual assault, and other forms of violence, so be aware that these recommended books may be triggering for sensitive readers.
1) Don't Breathe a Word by Holly Cupala. While most people know about physical and sexual abuse, the issue of emotional abuse gets much less attention. This is despite the fact that emotional abuse is at the core of all abusive relationships and tends to have the greatest long-term impact of any kind of abuse. Holly Cupala's YA contemporary does a great job of portraying the brutality of this form of abuse in a romantic relationship. It also addresses other difficult issues like homelessness and teen runaways.
2) All American Boys by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kieley. This continues to be my favorite YA novel about race and police brutality, just because it's so emotionally powerful. It is a fantastic book.
Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday, a book blog tag hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! Over the weekend, I reread Renee Ahdieh's The Wrath and the Dawn duology for the third time (so good). So today, I thought I'd go into the Top Ten archives and share the Top Ten Books/Series I Want to Reread! For even more books that I hope to reread soon, check out this Goodreads shelf.
1) J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter. Always.
2) Rae Carson's Fire and Thorns. This is a top favorite trilogy of mine, and I need to give it another read.
3) Lauren DeStefano's The Chemical Garden. I remember this being a pretty brilliant dystopian trilogy, and I'd like to give it another go to see what I think now that I'm older.
4) OCD Love Story by Corey Ann Haydu. I read this book before I was diagnosed with OCD, and I thought it was pretty great. I'd love to see what I think now!
Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday, a book blog tag hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! Today, I'm going to share my Top Ten More YA Novels About Mental Illness, adding on to the thirteen I recommended in this earlier post. Check them out!
1) Challenger Deep by Neal Shusterman. This is a truly fantastic YA contemporary about a boy in treatment for schizophrenia, written in a riotous, confusing manner that puts you right in the head of the patient. It's a well-deserved National Book Award winner.
2) Underwater by Marisa Reichardt. This beautifully paced YA contemporary explores the situation of a girl suffering from agoraphobia after a trauma. Like Challenger Deep, it does a great job of getting you in the mindset of the mentally ill individual so that you can better understand.
3) Still Life with Tornado by A.S. King. This odd YA magical realism tells the story of a girl suffering from depression and a bad home life and how she starts seeing different versions of herself from throughout time as she tries to come to terms with her situation.
Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday, a book blog tag hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! Today's topic is Top Ten Most Unique Books That I've Read. There's a lot of room for interpretation and personal opinion there, but I'll do my best to share some odd and original young adult novels!
1) Alive by Scott Sigler. Like most of the books on this list, I'm not entirely sure how to describe this. It's a YA sci-fi, but it features a group of twelve-year-olds who wake up with no memory inside fully grown adult bodies, and that's just where the strangeness starts. For most of the book, you have no idea what's actually happening. I haven't had a chance to read the rest of the books in the trilogy, but I enjoyed this one.
2) Glory O'Brien's History of the Future by A.S. King. All of A.S. King's books are weird, to the point that I usually don't understand them, but this one may be the most so. A YA magical realism, like all of her novels, it tells the story of a troubled teen girl who drinks a liquefied bat and starts seeing visions of a dystopian future that she then tries to prevent. But, like, weirder than that. It wasn't my thing, but it works for plenty of other people. Another one by A.S. King that I do like is Still Life with Tornado.
In the past, I've talked about a few different tropes that I don't like to see: things like love triangles, surprise incest, and dead pets. Some of these tropes are personally upsetting. Some are a bad idea in general: i.e. while some writers can pull them off, the inclusion of these concepts usually has a negative effect on the story. Others are just overdone.
I'll to continue sharing my thoughts on bad tropes, but today, I'd like to talk about the ones that I like. Most are romance tropes, because I am a sap, and as always, there are exceptions to the rule: these tropes can be done badly or in a cliche way. But, usually, I love it when writers play with these ideas. Check it out!
Girl Pretends to Be a Guy to Game the System
Obviously, I want ours to be a world where this would never be necessary. I want our society to be one where women don't have to compromise their selves or their femininity to be respected. But sexism is an active reality. Women are still granted less power both over themselves and in society purely because of their gender. So when girls in stories use their wit and will to trick people into treating them with equality, it's a powerful thing.
I love the way this trope works to promote feminism and dissect gender politics. Additionally, it adds some delicious conflict, especially when it comes to romance. Disney's Mulan, Stacy Lee's Under the Painted Sky, and Sherry Thomas's The Elemental Trilogy are all good examples of this trope. This week's "Waiting On" Wednesday also uses this concept.
Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday, a book blog tag hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! Today's topic is Top Ten Books I Loved Less/More Than I Expected. So I'll go through my recently read list and share with you the last ten books that defied my expectations in terms of quality. Here we go!
1) Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel. Liked more than expected. Somehow, the summary just doesn't capture the power of this book. It's a adult sci-fi, told almost entirely in interview format, about a team of scientists uncovering the secrets of a giant metallic body discovered in pieces underground. It's definitely a good one!
2) Dare You by Jennifer Brown. Liked less than expected. This YA thriller didn't live up to the first book in the series, in my opinion.
3) The Secret of a Heart Note by Stacey Lee. Liked more than expected. I've been a fan of Stacey Lee for a couple of years, but this is her first YA fantasy novel, and I wasn't sure what to think going in. It turned out to be lovely and intriguing: the story of a girl who has the ability to make love potions, but is forbidden to fall in love herself.
It's been a little while since my last bookshelf tour, and I've actually gotten a new, bigger bookshelf since then. So here's what's going on in Kira's bookland. (Sorry for the blurry photos; I'm still working on that whole "getting a smartphone" thing. Smartphones do have decentish cameras, right? Uch, I don't even know.)
Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday, a book blog tag hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! Today's topic is Top Ten Underrated Books That I Read in the Past Year. So here are the last ten books I read that I think deserve more attention and love!
1) Gemini by Sonya Mukherjee. A very solid and engaging YA contemporary about conjoined twins as they deal with romance and the imminent future.
2) Burn Baby Burn by Meg Medina. This YA historical fiction, set in 1977 NYC during the run of serial killer Son of Sam, presents an original, relatable story with edge. It also discusses the important issue of juvenile domestic violence.
3) The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters. Another YA historical fiction, this one set in the 1900s and with a fantasy aspect, that shows the suffragette movement through the eyes of a fierce young woman and a young man who works as a hypnotist.
Hello, friends! We've reached the end of 2016, and therefore, it is time for me to reveal my list of the best YA books released in 2016. Naturally, this is a matter of opinion, and there are many YA releases from 2016 that I haven't yet read. Also note that there are fewer books on this year's list--not because the books are any less awesome, but because I've made my standards a little stricter. I realize that I read a lot more than most people, so I figured it's better to narrow the list down for you guys.
Thanks for checking it out, let me know what your 2016 favorites are, and I'll see you again in 2017!
Why I Hate James Pat...
The Lesser Evil: Femi...
PTSD and The Hunge...
Guest Post: 5 Fandom...
My Mayo Clinic Experi...