All The Books I Can Read

1 girl….2 many books!

Top 10 Tuesday 11th February

Welcome back to another Top 10 Tuesday! Originally created & hosted by The Broke & the Bookish, Top 10 Tuesday now lives with Jana @ That Artsy Reader Girl. It features a different bookish related theme each week. This week…..well this week is a “love freebie” in honour of it being Valentine’s Day this week and I could’ve gone with romance books but I’ve done a few romance rec posts before around this time of year so I decided to go with something a bit different. This week, I’m going to talk about……

Top 10 Books I Unexpectedly LOVED

1. Illuminae by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff.

I held off reading this for the longest time. I’ve never been a fan of books set in space and I wasn’t sure if I would like the format. In fact, I thought I probably wouldn’t. It had so much hype that I wasn’t sure it was ever going to be able to live up to it. And it’s a fair brick of a book (although because of the format, it feels shorter) but when I finally did read it I absolutely loved it. It became one of my favourite books of the year.

2. Captive Prince by C.S. Pacat. 

I read this because the publicist gave it an absolutely amazing pitch – she urged me to give it a go even if I felt it wasn’t my sort of read (it was very different from almost everything she’d ever sent me as well) and it made me curious. I knew nothing about it going in – actually got a bind up of the first two books in preparation for the release of the third book and I ended up reading them (well, devouring really) and was absolutely obsessed with this story.

3. Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead.

This was another series I held off reading. I actually came to this series really late. I didn’t like the covers, I was a bit over vampires (height of the post-Twilight phase) and I thought it sounded pretty lame. When I finally ended up reading them at the urge of a few people I knew, I ended up belting through the entire series in about 5 days. I was completely invested in Rose and Dimitri (yeah I know it’s problematic, he was her teacher, I don’t care) and even Christian and Lissa were like a great crack relationship.

4. Working Stiff by Rachel Caine.

I loved this series – way more than I thought I would, based on the description. The main character is basically dead, kept alive by a special serum which must be injected regularly otherwise her body begins the break down/decomposition process. There’s a fun romance as well, with a guy who isn’t bothered by her “condition”.

5. The People Smuggler by Robin De Crespigny. 

Refugees, and in particular, boat people, have only really been presented one way in mainstream media here. Demonised as “queue jumpers” and “economic refugees” buying their way here to avoid the mythical line that no one has ever been able to point me in the direction of. This was the first book I read that gave me a better understanding of not just the people who are trying to get here, but those who actually acquire the boats etc, and organise everything. Why and how they do it, what their motivation is. Because quite often these boats aren’t really equipped for the open sea and they have capsized and required rescuing from other boats.

6. Once by Morris Gleitzman. 

I don’t really read middle grade fiction, but my oldest son really wanted me to read this because he’s just read it and he wanted to talk about it. I was willing to do anything that would encourage his reading and this book was amazing. It doesn’t shy away from the harsh realities of WWII but it’s all through a child’s eyes and he processes it in a way that gives readers the time to come to understand what it is that they’re reading.

7. Finnikin Of The Rock by Melina Marchetta.

I don’t know why I thought I would like this because it’s Melina Marchetta and because I enjoy fantasy. But I didn’t read these until just before the third book came out and I was surprised by just how much I was floored by this series. It’s so powerful – all the heartbreak, the anguish but also the love and hope and good feelings. Melina Marchetta is a queen and this shouldn’t have been a surprise and yet it still was, of the best kind.

8. Unsticky by Sarra Manning.

This was the book that cemented Sarra Manning as an auto buy/read for me because if she could make me obsessed with Grace and Vaughn then she could do anything. This book isn’t for everyone but I absolutely adored it and honestly must’ve reread it (in its entirety and in bits) a hundred times.

9. The Guernsey Literary And Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows. 

Can you believe I didn’t read this until last year? I actually even checked it out from the library a couple of times and then returned it unread when I ran out of time. The AU publisher sent me this copy when the movie was about to come out and I read it one Sunday afternoon and fell in love with it. I dragged my husband to the movies to see it the very next day and anyone who knows me knows how unusual this is because I’ve seen about three movies in the last 10 years at the cinema. Since then we’ve watched the movie at least twice more in its entirety and come across it part way through and watched the rest probably half a dozen more.

10. Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston.

I knew I’d like this. But I was surprised just how much I absolutely loved it…..I loved the contrast between Alex’s laid back more Americanness and Henry’s more stiff upper lip British sense of humour. They had amazing chemistry and I liked the politics included as well, it was just the right amount. Books like this…I always wish I had 100 more with the same vibes on my TBR for those times when I just need a guaranteed read that I’ll love.