Finally time for review, here are the best books I’ve read this year. Some are brand new and some are back list, but all are amazing! I had quite a few late nights because sleep meant that I couldn’t be reading in that moment.
I may not have had the best year, quantity wise, but at least I had a great year, quality wise! Check out my goodreads here.
The Best Books I've Read This Year 2023
Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros
Published: May 2, 2023
Violet Sorrengail was meant to live a life of quiet solitude as a scribe at the Basgiath war college in Navarre, but instead her high-ranking mother forced her to apply for the dragon riders quadrant. Dragons don’t bond with weak humans, they just kill them and Violet’s body is more fragile than most, so many worry she is walking to her own death sentence as she fights to become a dragon rider.
Besides fighting for her life in training, she has other students to worry about too, who will kill her to have a better chance at bonding with a dragon or just because they don’t like her…like Xaden Riorson.
I don’t think it’s a spoiler to tell you this is a pretty fierce dark romantasy that rivals the Sarah J Maas novels. So read it! The second book in the series just came out November 6, 2023.
Ink Blood Sister Scribe by Emma Torzs
Published: May 30, 2023
It’s been some time since Joanna found her father sucked dry of his blood from a book, yes the book killed him. She doesn’t know how or why and now she’s alone in the house caring for their magical collection alone. Meanwhile her sister Esther has been running, changing locations every year on the same day like their parents told her to do to escape the people who killed her mother and are after her too. Across the world in London, is the Library where the magical books are made and sold for a profit.
As you read, it seems like you will get more questions than answers until shit starts hitting the fan and you are the edge of your seat waiting for the finale. This is a magical mystery and suspense that will keep you glued to each page until the very end! I loved this book, like a lot a lot.
The Moth Keeper by K. O'Neill
Published: March 7, 2023
Kay O’Neill always keeps me mesmerized with their illustration and like their Tea Dragon Society books, this was the same type of heartwarming story. The Moth Keeper tackles concepts like loneliness and isolation while bringing in magic, friendship and community in as solutions. I love every graphic novel O’Neill comes out with. They are a must-read for me!
Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin
Published: July 5, 2022
This coming-of-age novel deals with mental health, disability, failure, and friendship in the tech industry. We follow Sam and Sadie as they partner up in college and create a world renown video game, but what must they sacrifice for fame and success?
This novel was complex, emotional, and all about the nature of connection and loving yourself before you can love others. As a little side note, I loved the ongoing inside joke about the Oregon Trail video game. It definitely brought back some nostalgia for me which I think the author was aiming for.
Loved the complexities in this novel!
The Book of Everlasting Things by Aanchal Malhotra
Published: December 27, 2022
Oh my god, this book! This star-crossed love story takes place during the Partition of India and Pakistan in the 1940s. It spans the entire lives of Samir and Firdaus, who loved each other at first sight, but were forbidden to act on it. Samir is a perfumer’s apprentice whose world revolves around smells. He smells Firdaus’s rose scent before he sees her. Firdaus is a calligrapher’s apprentice and Samir secretly sends her letters every day.
But as they suddenly find themselves on opposite sides of this violent partition in Lahore, their lives change forever.
I highly recommend this book, but definitely get those tissues ready.
The Chaos Machine by Max Fisher
Published: September 6, 2022
Fisher delves into the psychology and social media, how it impacts entire nations political uprisings and how addicting and influencing it is to individual minds. This book is so fascinating, I think everyone should read it at least once so we are truly aware and educated about how dangerous social media really is for our society and our own mental health.
Under the Whispering Door by TJ Klune
Published: September 21, 2021
I finally started reading TJ Klune this year and he has stolen my heart. He manages to twist dark, serious topics into heartwarming and beautiful narratives. This novel is about Wallace’s death. He was a terrible person in life. When he suddenly dies and is brought by a charming grim reaper to meet the ferryman, Hugo, who help him cross over (at his delightful tea shop), he must come to terms with his death.
Everyone in this novel is so charming in the quaint setting of a little tea shop, it feels like you are being wrapped in a snuggly blanket and given a cup of warm tea as you happen to being reading about death.
TJ Klune turned me into a devoted fan with this book and he will turn you into one too!
Wish You Were Here by Jodi Picoult
Published: November 30, 2021
Jodi Picoult always hooks me with her wonderful narration and thrilling legal thrillers. In recent years she has turned away from legal thrillers, but she still manages to hook me in as she grapples with contemporary topics. For this novel, it took place during COVID and dealt with long-term COVID patients who had weird side effects and had to fight for their life for months.
We begin the story with Diana whose life is going on exactly the track she wanted it with a partner, Finn, who has the same life plan as her. She’s in art auctions and he’s a surgical resident. They were planning on taking vacation to the Galapagos Islands, but COVID cases are starting to rise in NYC and Finn has to stay home. He encourages Diana to go, so she does, but finds herself stranded their amidst the COVID lockdown.
All Systems Red (Murderbot Series) by Martha Wells
Published: May 2, 2017
In a space-faring future, exploratory planet missions must be accompanied by security androids to ensure the team’s safety. Our series begins with a team of scientists conducting tests on a new planet with their self-aware SecUnit keeping them safe. It has hacked its governor module, and secretly refers to itself as Murderbot. All it wants to do is be left alone so it can watch all the media to its heart’s content.
You will be hooked to this popular series after you meet everyone’s favorite anti-social, sarcastic construct, Murderbot.
This is an ongoing series of novels under 200 pages each, packed with action and humor. I am speeding through and eagerly awaiting the release of Well’s newest book in the Murderbot series!
Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor
Published: March 28, 2017
What to say about this book… This is a duology in which I had no idea what I was walking into. Enter Lazlo Strange, a dreamer who has been endlessly fascinated with the mythical city of Weep whom many think doesn’t even exist. That is until a troop of warriors visits their city looking for scholars to bring back to Weep to solve a most urgent dilemma.
Lazlo the librarian begs to come offering all the skills he has. Little does he know what awaits him in the city of Weep — magic, love, tragedy and destiny. This is a series of magic, books, alchemy and gods. I loved these books so much, I will most definitely be reading them in the future.
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