Favorite Books I Read in 2016

This blog post should have been up in January. Stuff happened and time flew by so fast, and I never managed to finish this post before now. This is my favorite reads of 2016, and I hope you love my recommendations.


Fantasy & Sci-Fi


The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch

REVIEW

This was my absolute favorite read of 2016, and my new favorite book of all time. I LOVE the story, the world-building, the setting, the atmosphere and the characters. Everything in this book is so incredible good. I highly recommend this book, especially if you like thieves, the underground world, heists and Morally grey characters.


Illuminae by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff

REVIEW

This is a nerve wrecking, action packed book set on a spaceship full of several dangers. What makes this book so special and incredible cool, is the use of mixed media and the format the story is told through. It is told through: emails, chat logs, military files, interviews and other files. The story is also really good and interesting.

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

This is a really fun and fast paced read. The majority of the story in this book is set in a Virtual Reality world/game, where everyone including the main character are on a hunt for a hidden Easter egg. An Adventure hunt in a VR world/game, packed with 80’s pop culture references, makes for a really fun read. I guarantee you, you will not be bored reading this.


Winter by Marissa Meyer

This is the last book in The Lunar Chronicles, a  YA sci-fi series I absolutely adore. This series has a great group of characters and a really engaging story. I thought Winter was a great conclusion to the series.


Vicious by V.E. Schwab

This book is about two brilliant and intelligent best friends, who are on the search to find out how to get extraordinary abilities. This is a really interesting and exciting read, with darker and twisted characters.

The Red Rising Trilogy by Pierce Brown

REVIEW

This is a really exciting, intense and action packed dystopian trilogy. I especially like how the dystopian society in this series is put together, and the world building is very interesting and complex. The story had me sitting on the edge of my seat the whole time.

A Series Of Unfortunate Events series by Lemony Snicket

Even though this is a children’s book series, I had so much fun reading the 3 first books in the series for the first time last year. I found the books to be fantastic, and this series is now one of my favorites of all time. The story gets really dark, and horrible things happens to the main characters. Although the story is not fun for the Baudelaire children (the main characters), the book cracks me up, especially the narrator’s voice. It is written really funny and very different from other books I have read.


Contemporaries & Historical Fiction


Simon V.S. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

REVIEW

This is a lighthearted and adorable LGBTQ YA contemporary book, about Simon who is chatting with the mysterious and anonymous boy at his school who goes under the alias Blue. I had butterflies in my stomach the whole time I was reading this book.


More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

The second LGBTQ YA contemporary book on my list. Even though this book also is about a gay teenager, the book it very different from the book above. This isn’t lighthearted story at all, it is very serious and emotional. Be prepared to cry.


Between Shades Of Grey by Ruta Sepetys

This is a very impacting and heartbreaking story about loss, survival and hope. During world war 2 in Lithuanian, 15 year old Lina and her family gets deported to a Siberian working camp. Long away from her home and her country, she is fighting for survival. Reading this book I learned about the devastating and lesser known story of the Lithuanian people during World War 2.

❤ -Rakel

-Have You Read Any Of These Books?

-What Was Your Favorite Reads Of 2016?

Kindle eBook Haul

I have bought some books for my Kindle the last months. All of them minus one was on sales. I can’t contain myself when a book I want to read is only 1-3 dollars on Kindle. Even if I’m not planning on reading them any time soon. I guess I can call myself a Kindle hoarder. If you are looking for kindle deals follow me on Twitter LINK ❤ , I always post a link there whenever I come across a good deal.


The Queen’s Poisoner (The Kingfountain Series Book 1) by Jeff Wheeler

Goodreads Synopsis: King Severn Argentine’s fearsome reputation precedes him: usurper of the throne, killer of rightful heirs, ruthless punisher of traitors. Attempting to depose him, the Duke of Kiskaddon gambles…and loses. Now the duke must atone by handing over his young son, Owen, as the king’s hostage. And should his loyalty falter again, the boy will pay with his life.

Seeking allies and eluding Severn’s spies, Owen learns to survive in the court of Kingfountain. But when new evidence of his father’s betrayal threatens to seal his fate, Owen must win the vengeful king’s favor by proving his worth—through extraordinary means. And only one person can aid his desperate cause: a mysterious woman, dwelling in secrecy, who truly wields power over life, death, and destiny.


The Enchanted by Rene Denfeld

Goodreads Synopsis: A wondrous and redemptive debut novel, set in a stark world where evil and magic coincide, The Enchanted combines the empathy and lyricism of Alice Sebold with the dark, imaginative power of Stephen King.

“This is an enchanted place. Others don’t see it, but I do.”

The enchanted place is an ancient stone prison, viewed through the eyes of a death row inmate who finds escape in his books and in re-imagining life around him, weaving a fantastical story of the people he observes and the world he inhabits. Fearful and reclusive, he senses what others cannot. Though bars confine him every minute of every day, he marries magical visions of golden horses running beneath the prison, heat flowing like molten metal from their backs, with the devastating violence of prison life…. more on Goodreads


If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo

Goodreads Synopsis: Amanda Hardy is the new girl in school in Lambertville, Tennessee. Like any other girl, all she wants is to make friends and fit in. But Amanda is keeping a secret. There’s a reason why she transferred schools for her senior year, and why she’s determined not to get too close to anyone.

And then she meets Grant Everett. Grant is unlike anyone she’s ever met—open, honest, kind—and Amanda can’t help but start to let him into her life. As they spend more time together, she finds herself yearning to share with Grant everything about herself…including her past. But she’s terrified that once she tells Grant the truth, he won’t be able to see past it.

Because the secret that Amanda’s been keeping? It’s that she used to be Andrew.



The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

Goodreads synopsis: Dash and Lily have had a tough year since they first fell in love among the shelves of their favorite bookstore. Lily’s beloved grandfather suffered a heart attack, and his difficult road to recovery has taken a major toll on her typically sunny disposition.

With only twelve days left until Christmas—Lily’s favorite time of the year—Dash, Lily’s brother Langston, and their closest friends must take Manhattan by storm to help Lily recapture the unique holiday magic of a glittering, snow-covered New York City in December.


Bird Box by Josh Malerman

Goodreads Synopsis: Something is out there, something terrifying that must not be seen. One glimpse of it, and a person is driven to deadly violence. No one knows what it is or where it came from.

Five years after it began, a handful of scattered survivors remains, including Malorie and her two young children. Living in an abandoned house near the river, she has dreamed of fleeing to a place where they might be safe. Now that the boy and girl are four, it’s time to go, but the journey ahead will be terrifying: twenty miles downriver in a rowboat–blindfolded–with nothing to rely on but her wits and the children’s trained ears. One wrong choice and they will die. Something is following them all the while, but is it man, animal, or monster?

Interweaving past and present, Bird Box is a snapshot of a world unraveled that will have you racing to the final page.


The Lies of Locke Lamora (Gentleman Bastards 1) by Scott Lynch

Goodreads Synopsis: In this stunning debut, author Scott Lynch delivers the wonderfully thrilling tale of an audacious criminal and his band of confidence tricksters. Set in a fantastic city pulsing with the lives of decadent nobles and daring thieves, here is a story of adventure, loyalty, and survival that is one part “Robin Hood”, one part Ocean’s Eleven, and entirely enthralling… more on Goodreads



The Last Wish by Andrzej Sapkowski

Goodreads Synopsis: Geralt of Rivia is a witcher. A cunning sorcerer. A merciless assassin.

And a cold-blooded killer.

His sole purpose: to destroy the monsters that plague the world.

But not everything monstrous-looking is evil and not everything fair is good. . . and in every fairy tale there is a grain of truth.

The international hit that inspired the video game: The Witcher.


My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand & Brodi Ashton & Jodi Meadows

Goodreads Synopsis: The comical, fantastical, romantical, (not) entirely true story of Lady Jane Grey. In My Lady Jane, coauthors Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows have created a one-of-a-kind fantasy in the tradition of The Princess Bride, featuring a reluctant king, an even more reluctant queen, a noble steed, and only a passing resemblance to actual history—because sometimes history needs a little help.

At sixteen, Lady Jane Grey is about to be married off to a stranger and caught up in a conspiracy to rob her cousin, King Edward, of his throne. But those trifling problems aren’t for Jane to worry about. Jane is about to become the Queen of England.


The Shadow of the Wind (The Cemetery of Forgotten Book 1) by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Goodreads Synopsis: Barcelona, 1945: A city slowly heals in the aftermath of the Spanish Civil War, and Daniel, an antiquarian book dealer’s son who mourns the loss of his mother, finds solace in a mysterious book entitled The Shadow of the Wind, by one Julián Carax. But when he sets out to find the author’s other works, he makes a shocking discovery: someone has been systematically destroying every copy of every book Carax has written. In fact, Daniel may have the last of Carax’s books in existence. Soon Daniel’s seemingly innocent quest opens a door into one of Barcelona’s darkest secrets–an epic story of murder, madness, and doomed love.


❤ -Rakel

-Have You Read Any Of These Books? 

Review: Tatiana And Alexander by Paullina Simons – The Bronze Horseman #2 |Historical Fiction-Romance-World War 2-Russia|

7180853Series: Book 2 in the The Bronze Horseman series

Published: Published 2008 by HarperCollins

Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance, World War 2, Russia

Pages: 559

Language read: English

Format read: Paperback

Rating: 4.5 stars 4-5stjerner

The Bronze Horseman Synopsis: During the summer of 1941 the Metanov family are living a hard life in Leningrad. As the German armies advance their future looks bleak. For Tatiana, love arrives in the guise of Alexander, who harbours a deadly and extraordinary secret. –Goodreads

mythoughts

Warning: This review spoils book 1, so if you haven’t read it, don’t read on.

The first book is about 16 year old Tatiana and her life living in Leningrad with her family, the first brutal years of world war 2. The first day of war she meets the handsome Alexander, and throughout the book they slowly fall in love with each other.

Book 2 starts where book 1 ends, Tatiana alone in another country, pregnant and devastated by the loss of the only person she has left in the world, the love of her life Alexander.

I found Tatiana And Alexander, the second book in the series to be even better than the first, and I loved the first book when I read it 2 years ago. It is hard to remember everything I thought about the first book when I was reading it, because it is not fresh in my mind. I also read it before I had my blog, so I don’t have a review on it. I remember really liking the story of the first book, and that it made me cry. There was only a portion in the middle of the book that I didn’t like. When they were staying at the cabin in the woods/lake, there was a lot of sex and I found it to be boring and repetitive. I didn’t have the same problem with book 2. I gave book 1, The Bronze Horseman 4 stars.

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I really love this book. It is beautifully written, and the story that is full of hope, love, longing and loss is one of the most beautiful and heartbreaking stories I have ever read. The mix of the story and the writing made a rollercoaster ride of feelings and emotions. Not many other books has played with my emotions as much as this, I got anxious, happy, hopeful, nervous and sad for the characters and it was breaking my heart several times.

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I got highly invested in Tatiana and Alexander’s relationship and life. I could really feel the love, sorrow and longing they had for each other. We get to see a love story that blossoms in the devastating hardships of war.

We got to read a lot about Tatiana and her life in book one, and in this book it was Alexander’s turn. I’m not sure about this, but it felt like the majority of the book was from Alexander’s point of view. I really liked that we got to know him better. He has a very interesting past, with his parents being political immigrants from the US and all.

Even though I love the characters Tatiana and Alexander, I don’t always love the action and choices they do. SPOILER STRIKETHROUGH: Sometimes I get annoyed, especially with Tatiana. My biggest problem was at the end of the book when Tatiana left her good life in USA to find Alexander. She left her kid knowing it was a good chance he would lose his mother too. I felt it was very naive of her to do.

All the death, suffering and destruction that comes with war is devastating to read about. It is horrible, I can’t believe all the evil things that happened in world war 2, and I can’t believe it still happens on earth today. All the people that froze and starved to death, and all the soldiers who was fighting for their country. All of them has a story, a family and a life, that is something we should never forget. I know this is a book review and not a political post, but this was my thoughts and feeling while I was reading the book.

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This book is long and printed with a small font, but it kept me interested throughout the whole book. It was very intense from the beginning to the end. My emotions was up and down and I actually cried several times. I really loved this book! I gave this book 4.5 stars.

4-5stjerner

❤ -Rakel