2016 continues to be a great year in reading. Although I have only read 22 books this year so far (a sad amount considering 100 novels was my ultimate goal for this year), I have enjoyed most of the books I've completed. Currently I'm approximately 29 books behind my reading goal, I fact which I of course attribute to school work [😂], but I still have hope that I can catch up before the end of the summer.
With that said, six books in particular rise above the others as the most memorable books I have read so far in 2016. Surprisingly, each book hails from a different genre. Nevertheless, each possessed key aspects that kept me eagerly turning pages.
1. Six of Crows / Leigh Bardugo
Six of Crows, coincidentally, was my first read of 2016. Even though I picked this book up a couple months after publication and online buzz, I still became engaged in the story. Bardugo's world-building and character development were exquisite; despite my initial unfamiliarity with the setting, I quickly assimilated to and loved the setting; despite the multiple perspectives, I could easily distinguish each character's point of view. If I'm completely honest, I liked Six of Crows much more than the Grisha series. Complete with romances and friendships I could root for, new enemies at every twist and turn, and clever plans imagined by a teen heist society, this book was the full package!
2. A Study in Charlotte / Brittany Cavallaro
This story provides a refreshing twist to the traditional tales of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson. I loved that teen sleuths Charlotte and Jamie grow closer as the mystery intensifies to introduce hardships and new case developments. Their initial friendship had the potential to be rushed and predictable, but their clearly differing personalities and early school conflicts made the development of their relationship atypical and interesting. Even though I completed this book at the peak of a reading slump, I devoured this book in one sitting. I can't wait until the sequel, The Last of August, is out! I've been watching the release date.
I have a love-hate relationship with required reading, but The Glass Castle almost makes me glad that students are
4. The Hidden Oracle / Rick Riordan
I can happily say that I've enjoyed Rick Riordan books since the third grade. I must admit that the Percy Jackson and Heroes of Olympus series are especially close to my heart-- which is why I am amazed and appreciative of how creatively the concept of the Trials of Apollo series is connected to Percy Jackson's world. After several novels of demigods besting obstacles, I never would have thought of a story featuring a god's perspective in trying situations. Starring protagonists I had to cheer for, jokes that still make me laugh out loud, notable character development, and cameos from some special characters [😉], The Hidden Oracle was the end-of-school-year read I was looking for
5. The Unexpected Everything / Morgan Matson
I'm typically not a fan of contemporary books, but I unexpectedly enjoyed The Unexpected Everything! Despite the novel's physical length, it was a quick, light read that left a smile on my face. Unlike many YA books, the story provided realistic examples of teens texting [without all the unnecessary abbreviations]. The charming high school friendships in this story proved lifelike, too-- the characters looked out for each other in every way, but still faced natural obstacles that required the individuals to make their own decisions. The main characters, Andie and Clark, enjoyably bounced ideas off one another. As Kaitlin @ Next Page Please put it, this is a book I'd need in my beach bag. (I'm also in love with the cover!)
6. My Lady Jane / Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, + Jodi Meadows
This book may just be my most favorite of the year so far. I adored the voice in My Lady Jane that kept climactic and suspenseful moments lighthearted and even funny. The authors seamlessly integrated magic into the story, so despite its [somewhat] origination in history, fantastical elements seemed natural. The characters' perspectives were easy to distinguish and their differing personalities shown through the writing. I quite literally could not put this book down, even as I disregarded my summer homework plans and read through dinner. I borrowed this book from the library, but I am definitely looking to add My Lady Jane to my personal library as soon as possible.