SLIDER

My Year in Books {2018}


I always look forward to the end of the year for a variety of reasons – the holidays, the anticipation of the new year, and the habit of looking back on the past twelve months. Since 2015, I've always recapped the year with a series of posts I call "My Year in." From best books to biggest obsessions, they're some of my favorite posts to write. So, for the next week, you'll see what I loved in 2018. Now it's time for books! • Books in 2016 and 2017

In 2018, I finished 222 books. According to Goodreads, those books equaled a little more than 85,500 pages. And that doesn't even include all the picture books I read (and reread... and reread...) to my son! In the words of my husband, Nick, when I told him these stats, "Did you do ANYTHING besides read this year?" Don't worry, it was said with love and was entirely deserved. There's a reason that I haven't blogged a lot this year, and that's because I've gravitated towards books at every opportunity. This is the most I've read in a year since I started tracking my reading in 2011, and I'll be shocked if I ever read this many again. So, I'll hope you'll forgive me for highlighting my 20 favorite reads of 2018. After all, this is only 9% of what I read this year! 


2018 RELEASES
(in the order I read them)

1. Still Me by Jojo Moyes – After loathing After You, I didn't intend to read this book. But Kelly convinced me, and it ended up bringing the series full circle for me. This delivered the heartfelt, hopeful future Lou deserved.

2. Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff –  I couldn't wait to get my hands on this series finale, and it didn't disappoint. It was a satisfying emotional roller coaster that made me love this little band of badasses so much.

3. My Oxford Year by Julia Whelan – This wasn't the book I was expecting it to be, but I ended up loving it all the more for the way it surprised me. And the Oxford setting was just icing on the cake in this contemporary.

4. Us Against You by Fredrik Backman Beartown and this book basically broke me this year. I'm so attached to the characters, and the questions at the heart of both books left me contemplative long after closing the last page.

5. Dear Mrs. Bird by A.J. Pearce – This historical novel somehow melded a tone reminiscent of Bridget Jones' Diary with a story that had depth and emotion. This was just such a delight to read – and just the right length.

6. Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton – Estelle's recommendation sold me on this book, and she was spot on. I learned so much about Cuba's past and present, and fell in love with the way the setting felt like a character.

7. The Simple Wild by K.A. Tucker – I smile just thinking about this book! The Alaskan setting, hate-to-love vibes of the romance, heroine's growth, and family drama kept me hooked.  I already want to re-read it!

8. Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens – A love letter to the natural world, the coming of age of a complex girl, a murder mystery with courtroom drama, and a moving story of loneliness and longing. AMAZING.

9. Lethal White by Robert Galbraith – My favorite of the series so far! It had everything I wanted: a tangled web of a mystery, vivid characters, engaging personal dramas, and writing that just swept me away.

10. Kingdom of Ash by Sarah J. Maas – An emotional end to this series that means so much to me. I devoured it in a day and still can't believe there won't be more books with these characters. I'll miss them so!

HONORABLE MENTIONS: A Treacherous Curse by Deanna Raybourn, A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas, The Read-Aloud Family by Sarah Mackenzie, and I'd Rather Be Reading by Anne Bogel


BACKLIST BOOKS
(in the order I read them)

1. The Wild Rose by Jennifer Donnelly  Binging this series was honestly the best way to kick off 2018. I was so invested in these characters embracing life and finding love amidst the backdrop of an ever-changing world.

2. Act Like It by Lucy Parker – A random Kindle purchase that more than paid off. It was snarky, sarcastic and totally swoony, and I immediately read the next two books in the series. A new favorite author for me!

3. Prince in Disguise by Stephanie Kate Strohm – A cute, escapist read that has stayed with me more than I expected. The combination of Scottish castles, reality TV, family drama, and a sweet romance just worked for me.

4. Roomies by Christina Lauren – A fun modern take on the marriage of convenience trope that had me alternately laughing and swooning. This was right up my rom-com-loving alley and led to a binge of Christina Lauren books.

5. His Captive Lady by Anne Gracie – I loved this whole underrated series, but this installment was my favorite of the bunch. It's been almost a year, and I can still vividly remember certain scenes from this book.

6. Only a Kiss by Mary Balogh  This was the year of Mary Balogh for me – I read 18 books by her alone! There are several of hers that could have made this list, but this one made me cry (which rarely happens) so it's the winner.

7. The Virgin's War by Laura Andersen  Losing my March Madness bet with Kelly really paid off in the end because it led me to this series. I couldn't put them down, and this ending was practically perfect in every way (ahem, PIPPA).

8. Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman – Reminding me of a modern-day Jane Eyre, this book made me ache for the heroine but left me with hope for her in the end. I was so moved by this character.

9. Love in the Afternoon by Lisa Kleypas – Who can resist characters falling in love over letters? Not me! I flew through this series, and this final book was my favorite of them all. The Hathaway siblings just stole my heart.

10. Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor – Waiting to read this until Muse of Nightmares came out was such a great decision! I adored both and am just in awe of Laini's lyrical writing and magical storytelling.

HONORABLE MENTIONS: I've Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella, The Engagements by J. Courtney Sullivan, Because of Miss Bridgerton by Julia Quinn, and One Good Earl Deserves a Lover by Sarah MacLean

What was your favorite book of 2018?
Are any of these on your list? Or on your TBR pile?

5 comments

  1. I just ordered Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine and I'm so excited to read it when it arrives! And I'm also really excited for Next Year in Havana and The Simple Wild (I have family in Alaska and I went there last summer for my brother in law's wedding!). I obviously adored Kingdom of Ash as well and I also really enjoyed Roomies!

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  2. I loved Dear Mrs. Bird, it was one of the last books I read for the year. So charming!

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  3. I'm making Obsidio one of my top priorities this month, I really want to see how the trilogy ends! Hoping to read Roomies soon as well :)

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  4. I read The Tea Rose last year and really enjoyed it! Hopefully in 2019 I'll pick up the next book in the series :)

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  5. I really need to read Strange the Dreamer! I've had my copy for over a year now but haven't approached it yet. I already know from Daughter of Smoke and Bone that I'll love the writing style, so hopefully I'll get to it this year.

    I hope you have a lovely Book-filled 2019!

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