2018 Round Up

At the beginning of the year, I complied a yearly TBR (to be read) List. I broke it down into 2 categories: “Books I Will Read” and “Books I Hope to Finish.” While I did clock in at just under 60 books read this year, I definitely strayed from my TBR list. Below, I have crossed out the books I finished on each list.

I also want to take the time to list my 5 favorite and least favorite reads from this year. I tried to branch out and read new things, from romance to fantasy to biographies. But, I found that I always came back to my favorite YA material. It was good to branch out though. I discovered I LOVE listening to biographies on audiobook, especially humor based bios read by the author.

Books I Will Read

  1. The Language of Thorns by Leigh Bardugo
  2. Empress of a Thousand Skies by Rhoda Belleza
  3. A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro
  4. The Case Against the Supreme Court by Erwin Chemerinsky
  5. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
  6. The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher
  7. Wishful Drinking by Carrie Fisher
  8. Let it Snow by John Green
  9. The Last Black Unicorn by Tiffany Haddish
  10. Rising by Holly Kelly
  11. Starfall by Melissa Landers
  12. Open Road Summer by Emery Lord
  13. The Names They Gave Us by Emery Lord
  14. Warcross by Marie Lu
  15. *A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J Maas
  16. *Catwoman: Soulstealer by Sarah J Maas
  17. Tower of Dawn by Sarah J Maas
  18. Heartless by Marissa Meyer
  19. Nyxia by Scott Reintgen
  20. The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
  21. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
  22. Zodiac by Romina Russell
  23. Little Black Dresses, Little White Lies by Laura Stampler
  24. Lord of the Rings Series (The Fellowship, Two Towers, Return of the King, Hobbit, Silmarillion) by JRR Tolkien
  25. Love & Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch

Books I Hope to Finish

  1. The Wrath & the Dawn by Renée Ahdieh
  2. Flawed by Cecilia Ahern
  3. With Malice by Eileen Cook
  4. My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick
  5. My Own Words by Ruth Bader Ginsburg
  6. Dead Witch Walking by Kim Harrison
  7. Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
  8. 11/22/63 by Stephen King
  9. The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula Le Guin
  10. The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux
  11. The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski
  12. As I Wake by Elizabeth Scott
  13. A Love Letter to Whiskey by Kandi Steiner
  14. Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter
  15. Shrill by Lindy West

Books I Did Read in 2018

  1. Empire of Storms by Sarah J Maas
  2. Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu
  3. The Favorite Sister by Jessica Knoll
  4. Empress of a Thousand Skies by Rhoda Belleza
  5. Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
  6. Love & Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch
  7. Warcross by Marie Lu
  8. Everyday by David Levithan
  9. Open Road Summer by Emery Lord
  10. The Names They Gave Us by Emery Lord
  11. The Book of Joe Biden by Jeff Willser
  12. Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman
  13. Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton
  14. To All The Boys I Loved Before by Jenny Han
  15. Not That I Could Tell by Jessica Strawser
  16. Fates by Lanie Bross
  17. The Lost World by Michael Crichton
  18. The Librarian by Christy Sloat
  19. #Nerd by Cambria Hebert
  20. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
  21. Whiskey Prince by Toni Aleo
  22. American Gods by Neil Gaiman
  23. Beauty and the Beast by K.M. Shea
  24. Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum
  25. My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick
  26. Confessions of a Queen B* by Crista McHugh
  27. A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J Maas
  28. The Queen B* Strikes Bach by Crista McHugh
  29. The Queen B* and the Homecoming King by Crista McHugh
  30. #FashionVictim by Amina Akhtar
  31. Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli
  32. Salt by Hannah Moskowitz
  33. You’re You by Mette Bach
  34. Summer Constellations by Alisha Sevigny
  35. The Extinction Trials by S.M. Wilson
  36. Wishful Drinking by Carrie Fisher
  37. The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
  38. A Slow Regard of Silent Things by Patrick Rothfuss
  39. How to Walk Away by Kathrine Center
  40. Love & Luck by Jenna Evans Welch
  41. Stardust by Neil Gaiman
  42. Undead Girl Gang by Lily Anderson
  43. Royals by Rachel Hawkins
  44. The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal
  45. The Darkest Star by Jenifer L. Armentrout
  46. The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
  47. Some Girls Bind by Rory James
  48. Bring Me Home by Bree Howard
  49. The Dead Queen’s Club by Hanna Capin
  50. Girl, Wash Your Face: Stop Believing the Lies About Who You Are so You Can Become Who You Were Meant to Be by Rachel Hollis
  51. The Last Black Unicorn by Tiffany Haddish
  52. Talking as Fast as I Can: From Gilmore Girls to Gilmore Girls, and Everything in Between by Lauren Graham
  53. I’ve Got This Round: More Tales of Debauchery by Marie Hart
  54. In Conclusion, Don’t Worry About It by Lauren Graham
  55. Lucky Bastard: My Life, My Dad, and the Things I’m Not Allowed to Say on TV by Joe Buck
  56. Grace’s Guide: The Art of Pretending to Be a Grown-Up by Grace Helbig
  57. Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman by Lindy West
  58. Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling

Favorite Reads of 2018

  • A Slow Regard of Silent Things
  • The Calculating Stars
  • Norse Mythology
  • Bring Me Home
  • Undead Girl Gang

These five books have little in common, but they all left the biggest impression on me this year. I connected to the main character, Auri, in a Slow Regard of Silent Things. I was blown away by the character development and writing in The Calculating Stars. I was throughly amused at Gaiman’s takes and stories in his Norse Mythology. Bring Me Home is one of the best feel-good romance novels I have ever read. Undead Girl Gang made me laugh out loud and appreciate having a best friend who would do anything for me.

Least Favorite Reads

  • Girl, Wash Your Face
  • Fates
  • You’re You
  • Not That I Could Tell
  • Dead Queen’s Club

These books all fell short of expectation. Girl, Wash Your Face sounded like a privileged girl trying to show how much her and her “#girlgang” or “tribe” has shaped her. But it is full of cliche advice. Fates was a book that I skimmed because it was predictable. You’re You and Not That I Could Tell were two books that I felt never amounted to a true climax. I was left waiting for something to happen. Finally, Dead Queen’s Club was confusing, convoluted, and suffers from trying too hard to make teenagers fit historical stereotypes.

What books have you read, loved, or hated in 2018?
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Anticipated Book Releases of 2018

A new year means new book releases to look forward to. For the past couple of months, I have scavenged sites and marked my calendar to compile a list of books I am excited about this year. I am not listing all YA new releases for the year, just the books that I want to read.

Here’s a list of books that I’m looking forward to reading as well as their release dates and brief description (where applicable).

Batman: Nightwalker (DC Icons #2) by Marie Lu* [Jan 2]

  • “One by one, the city’s elites are being executed as their mansions’ security systems turn against them, trapping them like prey. Meanwhile, Bruce is turning eighteen and about to inherit his family’s fortune, not to mention the keys to Wayne Enterprises and all the tech gadgetry his heart could ever desire. But after a run-in with the police, he’s forced to do community service at Arkham Asylum, the infamous prison that holds the city’s most brutal criminal. In Arkham, Bruce meets Madeleine, a brilliant girl with ties to the Nightwalkers. What is she hiding? And why will she speak only to Bruce? Madeleine is the mystery Bruce must unravel. But is he getting her to divulge her secrets, or is he feeding her the information she needs to bring Gotham City to its knees? Bruce will walk the dark line between trust and betrayal as the Nightwalkers circle closer.” —Goodreads

When My Heart Joins the Thousands by A.J. Steiger [Feb. 6]

  • “A heartbreaking debut YA romance featuring a neuroatypical girl with a tragic history and the chronically ill boy trying to break the vault encasing her heart.Alvie Fitz doesn’t fit in, and she doesn’t care. She’s spent years swallowing meds and bad advice from doctors and social workers. Adjust, adapt. Pretend to be normal. It sounds so easy. If she can make it to her eighteenth birthday without any major mishaps, she’ll be legally emancipated. Free. But if she fails, she’ll become a ward of the state and be sent back to the group home. All she wants is to be left alone to spend time with her friend, Chance, the one-winged hawk at the zoo where she works. She can bide her time with him until her emancipation. Humans are overrated anyway. Then she meets Stanley, a boy who might be even stranger than she is—a boy who walks with a cane, who turns up every day with a new injury, whose body seems as fragile as glass. Without even meaning to, she finds herself getting close to him. But Alvie remembers what happened to the last person she truly cared about. Her past stalks her with every step, and it has sharp teeth. But if she can find the strength to face the enemy inside her, maybe she’ll have a chance at happiness after all.” —Harper Collins

I’ve Got This Round: More Tales of Debauchery by Mamrie Hart* [Feb. 6]

  • “When Mamrie simultaneously enters her 30s and finds herself single for the first time since college, the world is suddenly full of possibilities. Emboldened by the cool confidence that comes with the end of one’s 20s plus the newfound independence of an attachment-free lifestyle, Mamrie commits herself to living life with even more spirit, adventure, and heart than before. Mamrie dives into new experiences at full-tilt and seeks out once-in-a-lifetime opportunities (like meeting the Dixie Chicks), bucket-list goals (like visiting the Moulin Rouge), and madcap adventures (like going anchors-away on a Backstreet Boys cruise)—all while diving back into the dating world for the first time in a decade. In I’ve Got This Round, readers will find the same shameless honesty and I’ll-try-anything-once spirit they loved in Hart’s New York Times bestseller You Deserve a Drink. Mamrie doubles down on her strong female friendships, her willingness to engage in shenanigans, and her inimitable candor, taking the reader along for a wild and unforgettable journey through adulting.” —Amazon

The Traitor’s Game by Jennifer A. Nielsen [Feb. 27]

  • “Nothing is as it seems in the kingdom of Antora. Kestra Dallisor has spent three years in exile in the Lava Fields, but that won’t stop her from being drawn back into her father’s palace politics. He’s the right hand man of the cruel king, Lord Endrick, which makes Kestra a valuable bargaining chip. A group of rebels knows this all too well — and they snatch Kestra from her carriage as she reluctantly travels home.The kidnappers want her to retrieve the lost Olden Blade, the only object that can destroy the immortal king, but Kestra is not the obedient captive they expected. Simon, one of her kidnappers, will have his hands full as Kestra tries to foil their plot, by force, cunning, or any means necessary. As motives shift and secrets emerge, both will have to decide what — and who — it is they’re fighting for.” —Goodreads

The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw [March 6]

  • Hocus Pocus and Practical Magic meets the Salem Witch trials in this haunting story about three sisters on a quest for revenge—and how love may be the only thing powerful enough to stop them. Welcome to the cursed town of Sparrow…Where, two centuries ago, three sisters were sentenced to death for witchery. Stones were tied to their ankles and they were drowned in the deep waters surrounding the town. Now, for a brief time each summer, the sisters return, stealing the bodies of three weak-hearted girls so that they may seek their revenge, luring boys into the harbor and pulling them under.” —Simon & Schuster

The Final Six by Alexandra Monir [March 6]

  • “When Leo, an Italian championship swimmer, and Naomi, a science genius from California, are two of the twenty-four teens drafted into the International Space Training Camp, their lives are forever altered. After erratic climate change has made Earth a dangerous place to live, the fate of the population rests on the shoulders of the final six who will be scouting a new planet. Intense training, global scrutiny, and cutthroat opponents are only a few of the hurdles the contestants must endure in this competition.” —Goodreads

Frat Girl by Kiley Roache* [March 27]

  • Sometimes the F-word can have more than one meaning…For Cassandra Davis, the F-word is fraternity—specifically Delta Tau Chi, a house on probation and on the verge of being banned from campus. Accused of offensive, sexist behavior, they have one year to clean up their act. For them, the F-word is feminist—the type of girl who hates them to the core and is determined to make them lose their home. With one shot at a scholarship to attend the university of her dreams, Cassie pitches a research project—to pledge Delta Tau Chi and provide proof of the misogynistic behavior for which they are on probation. After all, they’re frat boys. She knows exactly what to expect once she gets there. Exposing them should be a piece of cake. But the boys of Delta Tau Chi have their own agenda, and fellow pledge Jordan Louis is certainly more than the tank-top-wearing “bro” she expected to find. With her heart and her future tangled in a web of her own making, Cassie is forced to realize that the F-word might not be as simple as she thought after all.” —Barnes & Noble

The Queens of Innis Lear by Tessa Gratton [March 27]

  • “The erratic decisions of a prophecy-obsessed king have drained Innis Lear of its wild magic, leaving behind a trail of barren crops and despondent subjects. Enemy nations circle the once-bountiful isle, sensing its growing vulnerability, hungry to control the ideal port for all trade routes. The king’s three daughters—battle-hungry Gaela, master manipulator Reagan, and restrained, starblessed Elia—know the realm’s only chance of resurrection is to crown a new sovereign, proving a strong hand can resurrect magic and defend itself. But their father will not choose an heir until the longest night of the year, when prophecies align and a poison ritual can be enacted. Refusing to leave their future in the hands of blind faith, the daughters of Innis Lear prepare for war—but regardless of who wins the crown, the shores of Innis will weep the blood of a house divided.” —Goodreads

Bound to You by Alyssa Brandon [April 10]

  • “Mate—from the word soulmate—the person who is ideally suited to you. Your perfect match. The one you’re destined to be with. Your one true love. The one you can’t live without. Megan Ross has been waiting her whole life for her mate to come and sweep her off her feet. But, the wolf she meets on the beach is NOT the sweet gentle boy she’s been dreaming of. Instead, he’s a warrior, one who has locked his heart away in a prison as cold and hard as a diamond. Far from home, with a soulmate who is still in many ways a stranger, Megan learns that the path to true love isn’t quite as straight and easy as she thought…” —Swoon Reads

A Court of Frost & Starlight (ACOTAR #3.5) by Sarah J Maas* [May 1]

  • “Narrated by Feyre and Rhysand, this story bridges the events in A Court of Wings and Ruin and the upcoming spinoff novels. Feyre, Rhys, and their close-knit circle of friends are still busy rebuilding the Night Court and the vastly-changed world beyond. But Winter Solstice is finally near, and with it, a hard-earned reprieve. Yet even the festive atmosphere can’t keep the shadows of the past from looming. As Feyre navigates her first Winter Solstice as High Lady, she finds that those dearest to her have more wounds than she anticipated—scars that will have far-reaching impact on the future of their Court.” —Goodreads

Royals by Rachel Hawkins [May 1]

  • “Meet Daisy Winters. She’s an offbeat sixteen-year-old Floridian with mermaid-red hair; a part time job at a bootleg Walmart, and a perfect older sister who’s nearly engaged to the Crown Prince of Scotland. Daisy has no desire to live in the spotlight, but relentless tabloid attention forces her join Ellie at the relative seclusion of the castle across the pond. While the dashing young Miles has been appointed to teach Daisy the ropes of being regal, the prince’s roguish younger brother kicks up scandal wherever he goes, and tries his best to take Daisy along for the ride. The crown–and the intriguing Miles–might be trying to make Daisy into a lady . . . but Daisy may just rewrite the royal rulebook to suit herself.” —Penguin Random House

The Accidental Bad Girl by Maxine Kaplan [May 15]

  • “Kendall Evans is a good girl. Good student, good daughter, good friend. Happy to be “spotlight-adjacent” to her best friend, Kendall enjoys popularity-by-proximity. But with one mistake—an accident, really—she becomes the “bad girl” of her senior class. After getting caught “in the act” with her best friend’s ex on the last day of junior year, Kendall spends her summer hiding out, unplugged from social media. Now it’s the first day of her final semester and graduation can’t come soon enough.” —The Rights Factory

Chemistry Lessons by Meredith Goldstein [June 19]

  • “For seventeen-year-old Maya, the equation for happiness is simple: a dream internship at MIT + two new science nerd friends + a perfect boyfriend = one amazing summer. Then Whit dumps her out of the blue. Maya is miserable until she discovers that her scientist mother, before she died, was conducting research on manipulating pheromones to enhance human attraction. If Maya can finish her mother’s work, maybe she can get Whit back. But when her experiment creates chaos in her love life, she realizes that maybe love and loss can’t be understood using the scientific method. Can she learn to trust the unmeasurables of love and attraction instead?” —Goodreads

Beast: A Tale of Love and Revenge by Lisa Jensen [July 10]

  • “They say that Château Beaumont is cursed, but servant girl Lucie doesn’t believe in such foolishness. How could anyone as handsome as Jean-Loup Christian Henri LeNoir, Chevalier de Beaumont and master of the estate, be cursed? But when the chevalier behaves with brutal cruelty, Lucie vows to see him suffer. A wisewoman grants her wish with a spell that transforms handsome Jean-Loup into monstrous-looking Beast. At last the chevalier’s appearance reflects the monster he is inside. But Beast proves to be nothing like Jean-Loup. Jean-Loup would never tend his roses so patiently; Jean-Loup would never pick up a pen and attempt poetry; Jean-Loup would never express remorse for the wrong done to Lucie. Gradually, Lucie realizes that Beast is an entirely different creature from the handsome chevalier, with a heart more human than Jean-Loup’s ever was. Lucie dares to hope that noble Beast has permanently replaced the cruel Jean-Loup — until an innocent beauty arrives at Beast’s château with the power to break the spell.” —Target

Like Never and Always by Ann Aguirre [July 17]

  • “A 16-year-old girl wakes in the hospital following a car crash that killed her best friend to discover everyone calling her by her dead friend’s name, and when the bandages come off, it’s not her face in the mirror anymore.” —Ann Aguirre

Grace and Fury by Tracy Banghart [July 24]

  • “In a world where women have no rights, sisters Serina and Nomi Tessaro face two very different fates: one in the palace, the other in prison.Serina has been groomed her whole life to become a Grace–someone to stand by the heir to the throne as a shining, subjugated example of the perfect woman. But when her headstrong and rebellious younger sister, Nomi, catches the heir’s eye, it’s Serina who takes the fall for the dangerous secret that Nomi has been hiding. Now trapped in a life she never wanted, Nomi has only one way to save Serina: surrender to her role as a Grace until she can use her position to release her sister. This is easier said than done. A traitor walks the halls of the palace, and deception lurks in every corner. But Serina is running out of time, imprisoned on an island where she must fight to the death to survive and one wrong move could cost her everything.” —Tracy Banghart 

Sea Witch by Sarah Henning [July 31]

  • “Ever since her best friend, Anna, drowned, Evie has been an outcast in her small fishing town. A freak. A curse. A witch. A girl with an uncanny resemblance to Anna appears offshore and, though the girl denies it, Evie is convinced that her best friend actually survived. That her own magic wasn’t so powerless after all. And, as the two girls catch the eyes—and hearts—of two charming princes, Evie believes that she might finally have a chance at her own happily ever after. But her new friend has secrets of her own. She can’t stay in Havnestad, or on two legs, unless Evie finds a way to help her. Now Evie will do anything to save her friend’s humanity, along with her prince’s heart—harnessing the power of her magic, her ocean, and her love until she discovers, too late, the truth of her bargain. The rise of Hans Christian Andersen’s iconic villainess is a heart-wrenching story of friendship, betrayal, and a girl pushed beyond her limits—to become a monster.” —Goodreads

Catwoman: Soulstealer (DC Icons #3) by Sarah J Maas* [Aug. 7]

  • “Two years after escaping Gotham City’s slums, Selina Kyle returns as the mysterious and wealthy Holly Vanderhees. She quickly discovers that with Batman off on a vital mission, Batwing is left to hold back the tide of notorious criminals. Gotham City is ripe for the taking. Meanwhile, Luke Fox wants to prove he has what it takes to help people in his role as Batwing. He targets a new thief on the prowl who seems cleverer than most. She has teamed up with Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn, and together they are wreaking havoc. This Catwoman may be Batwing’s undoing. Selina is playing a desperate game of cat and mouse, forming unexpected friendships and entangling herself with Batwing by night and her devilishly handsome neighbor Luke Fox by day. But with a dangerous threat from the past on her tail, will she be able to pull off the heist that’s closest to her heart?” —Sarah J Maas

The Struggle is Real by Maggie Ann Martin [Aug. 21]

  • “Savannah is dreading being home alone with her overbearing mother after her big sister―and best friend―goes off to college. But if she can just get through senior year, she’ll be able to escape to college, too. What she doesn’t count on is that her mother’s obsession with weight has only grown deeper since her appearance on an extreme weight-loss show, and now Savvy’s mom is pressuring her even harder to be constantly mindful of what she eats.Between her mom’s diet-helicoptering, missing her sister, and worrying about her collegiate future, Savvy has enough to worry about. And then she meets George, the cute new kid at school who has insecurities of his own. As Savvy and George grow closer, they help each other discover how to live in the moment and enjoy the here and now before it disappears.Amazon

Untitled Throne of Glass #7 by Sarah J Maas* [Oct. 30]

 

*Denotes books that I have pre-ordered

 

What books are you looking forward to in 2018?

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