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How do you narrow down a full year of reading to only 5 amazing books? I have absolutely NO idea but I am going to give it my best shot! This was such a great reading year, my friends. I set a goal of 75 books and managed too finish 76! While I did have some less than fabulous reads this year, I also have some books that I think will remain favorites for a long time to come! If you want to see my longer list of 20 favorites, you can pop over to Instagram and check out the reel I made! But, for today, let’s check out those Top 5 faves!! (I am already having anxiety about posting about only 5…so stay tuned…I may add more down the road)
Other Birds by Sarah Addison Allen
I think I have mentioned this book no less than 20 times over on Instagram. I absolutely adored Other Birds by Sarah Addison Allen. It is one of those books that just finds its way into your heart and stays there. It is Magical Realism at its absolute finest. One part mystery, one part ghost story, and so many parts friendship and found family. This was just such a spectacular story. I was also smitten with the setting. A coastal town that is home to a marshmallow factory…you can almost smell the briny marshmallowy air! I recommend this one so so much! I hope you will check it out!
Daisy Darker by Alice Feeney
This was my first book by Alice Feeney…and I proceeded to read three more after this one. I absolutely LOVED Daisy Darker. This is another book that I have shared on numerous occasions over on Instagram. It was such a page turner…and had an ending that I did not see coming AT ALL. There were several twists in this book…one I figured out…but the big twist? Nope. I didn’t see it coming at all and I actually had to flip back through the pages in an attempt to figure out HOW I missed it. The setting was perfection…secluded old home on an island that is only accessible when the tide is out? Yeah, that works! It gave me all of the Clue The Movie vibes and I loved it. You can read a full review here.
Anatomy: A Love Story by Dana Schwartz
Again, if you follow me on Instagram this book will come as no surprise. I loved every single page of this book. Let’s start with the cover…stunning. Mary Shelley meets Downton Abbey in all of the very best ways. This has all of the spooky, gothic, creepy vibes…cadavers and grave robbing in early 1800’s Edinburgh…yep, that kind of creepy. It was just fabulous and I cannot wait for book two to come out!! For a full review of Anatomy, click here.
Hollow Fires by Samira Ahmed
Let’s just classify this book as one of the books that tore my heart out. It was absolytely stunningly beautifully written…in a completely gut-wrenching kind of way. Hollow Fires is written with dual narrators. One being a teen girl who discovers that body of a 14 year old boy…and the other being the murdered boy. Reading the book with his voice was gut-wrenching. This book is also so relevant and tackles topics that are happening every single day. Author Samira Ahmed does no shy away from this topics…she hits them head on and it was powerful. Whether it be white supremacy or Islamophobia…she tackles it all. Even though this book broke my heart…I just loved it so much. Full review here.
As Long As the Lemon Trees Grow by Zoulfa Katouh
Speaking of books that tore my heart out…may I present As Long As the Lemons Trees Grow. This book was spectacular. Another one that was so gut-wrenching to read because of how real the topic is…but so so beautifully written. This was another book that had a twist I didn’t see coming. If I am reading a mystery/thriller I am usually on the look out for a twist…but when I read other works of fiction I am not looking…and this one almost took my breath away! Set in war torn Syria, this book was just wonderful. It does deal with lots of violence, war, and injuries and death to children, so just know that before picking it up.
Looking to 2023
How did your reading go for 2022? What were your favorites? As I mentioned above, I am already having anxiety that I narrowed this list down to 5 and not 10. I can hear the books I left out whispering to me…so don’t be surprised if there is a part 2 in the not so distant future! Oh, and stay tuned because I have a post coming up with my favorite Middle-Grade reads of 2022 as well!
I decided to up my reading goal quite a bit for 2023. I am aiming for 100 books. It seems pretty daunting but hopefully I can find a couple of smaller books to help that number go up…no shame in my game. I know that there are a few giants on my list that are going to slow me down…looking at you Babel…but I am determined to get that one read this year too!
I am so excited for this year. There are so many amazing books coming out and I cant wait to get my hands on all of them. I am also so excited for my reading journal this year. I have already started and cant wait to see how it turns out!! If you are a fan of bullet journaling or reading journals, give me a follow on Instagram…I have a new site just for my bullet journal!
Thanks so much for being here!