I’m a little late, but it’s that time of year again where everyone does their yearly book wrap up! In 2019, I set to read 40 books, and I surpassed that goal by reading 69. Since I did get to read so many, I won’t do individual mini reviews. Instead, I’ll list out all the ones I’ve read and their ratings, and then at the end, I’ll do a list of top 2019 reads vs. 2019 reads I was disappointed with/didn’t like.
Without further ado…
- Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo (Reread) — 5 Stars.
- Jezz’s Secret by Me (My little sisters were reading my middle school series toward the beginning of the year, so I read along too) — Not Rated
- The Imposter by Me (See Above) — Not Rated
- The End by Me (See Above) — Not Rated
- The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum — 4 Stars.
- The Art of Client Service by Robert Solomon — 3 Stars.
- Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen (My First Ever Austen Read!) — 4 Stars.
- Smoke and Mirrors by Me (Reread after publication in late 2018) — Not Rated
- Je Te Veux by Me (Can’t really believe this came out in February 2019. Feels like I wrote it ages ago) — Not Rated
- Start Marketing Your Book by Ella Barnard (Indie!) — 5 Stars.
- How to Sell and Market Your Book by Darin Jewell — 3 Stars.
- The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon — 4 Stars.
- Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo (Reread) — 5 Stars.
- Let Me Be a Woman by Elisabeth Elliot (Reread) — 4 Stars.
- Asunder by L. Steinworth (Indie!) — 4 Stars.
- King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo — 4.5 Stars.
- Villager by Me — Not Rated
- The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern — 5 Stars.
- The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton (Yearly Reread) — 5 Stars.
- The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner — 3.5 Stars.
- That Was Then, This Is Now by S.E. Hinton (Reread) — 5 Stars.
- Storyteller by Me — Not Rated.
- Five Feet Apart by Rachel Lippincott — 4 Stars.
- The Wicked King by Holly Black — 5 Stars.
- How to Make a Living with Your Writing by Joanna Penn (Indie!) — 5 Stars.
- Paper Princess by Erin Watt — 5 Stars.
- The Busy Mom’s Guide to Novel Marketing by Jamie Foley and Angela Castillo (Indie!) — 5 Stars.
- Things I Wish I’d Known Before I Got Married by Gary Chapman (Reread) — 5 Stars.
- Paper Flowers by Andie Barr (Indie!) — 3.5-4 Stars
- Broken Prince by Erin Watt — 5 Stars.
- Silent Stories by Rachael N. Miller — 5 Stars.
- Public Speaking for Authors by Joanna Penn (Indie!) — 5 Stars.
- The 4 Seasons of Marriage by Gary Chapman — 4 Stars.
- The Busy Mom’s Guide to Indie Publishing by Jamie Foley and Angela Castillo (Indie!) — 4 Stars.
- Business for Authors by Joanna Penn (Indie!) — 5 Stars.
- Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan — 5 Stars.
- Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon (Reread) — 5 Stars.
- The Road Back to You by Ian Morgan Cron (book and study guide) — 5 Stars.
- The Path Between Us by Suzanne Stabile (book and study guide) — 5 Stars.
- Scarlet by Marissa Meyer — 4 Stars.
- Hero at the Fall by Alwyn Hamilton — 5 Stars.
- All the Wind in the World by Samantha Mabry — 3.5-4 Stars.
- Cress by Marissa Meyer — 4.5 Stars.
- Vicious by V.E. Schwab — 5 Stars.
- China Rich Girlfriend by Kevin Kwan — 5 Stars.
- Winter by Marissa Meyer — 5 Stars.
- Twisted Palace by Erin Watt — 4 Stars.
- Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie — 4 Stars.
- Fawkes by Nadine Brandes — 4.5 Stars.
- Stars Above by Marissa Meyer — 5 Stars.
- Wild Blue Wonder by Carlie Sorosiak (Reread) — 5 Stars.
- Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier — 3.5 Stars.
- Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by JK Rowling (Reread) — 5 Stars.
- The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater — 5 Stars.
- The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater — 5 Stars.
- Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater — 5 Stars.
- The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater — 5 Stars.
- The Brain Warriors Way by Dr. Daniel Amen and Tana Amen — 5 Stars.
- Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe by Melissa de la Cruz — 3.5 Stars.
- The Enchanted Sonata by Heather Dixon Wallwork — 5 Stars.
- It Happened at Christmas by Christen Krumm — 3 Stars.
- Sheet Music by Dr. Kevin Leman — 4 Stars.
- Master Content Strategy by Pamela Wilson (Indie!) — 4.5 Stars.
- Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo (Reread) — 4 Stars.
As you can see by the majority of my high ratings in that list, I had a really great reading year, haha! I found a lot of favorites and a lot of books that, while not favorites, I want to champion for others to read. But what about the books that REALLY stuck out for me this year?
2019 Best Books:
The Raven Cycle Series by Maggie Stiefvater. This became one of my favorite series of the year, and I love it so much that not only did I get the complete series for Christmas, but I’m putting it in my “annual reads” list to read again this year! Book Reviews: First Two Books, Last Two Books.
The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer. This is another series that completely captured my heart and has now made it to my “annual reads” list. I don’t own any of the books yet, but I’m hoping to get at least some of them when Marissa Meyer comes to Utah in March! Book Reviews: First Two Books, Last Two Books.
Asunder by L. Steinworth is a book that surprised me. While frustrated with it in the beginning, I realized that the author meant to make the book read that way, as it sets up this phenomenal plot twist at the end. Definitely look forward to reading it again asap! If you’d like to check out my review on this, you can find it here!
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern was another book that took me by surprise. I’d owned it for a year or two without ever really giving it a try, but after a glowing recommendation by a dear friend, I gave it a go. And I couldn’t put it down. Definitely read this if you haven’t already!
The Wicked King by Holly Black. I started reading The Folk of the Air trilogy back in 2018 as another recommendation from a friend, and needless to say, I got hooked. You can find my review on that here!
Wild Blue Wonder by Carlie Sorosiak. A reread, yes, but this book kicks me in the feels every. Single. Time. It’s one of only 5 books in existence that has ever made me cry.
Vicious by V.E. Schwab. My first ever Schwab book was a hit! Another book that I couldn’t put down. The world Schwab has created in her Villains series is every bit as potent and exquisite as the characters.
Fawkes by Nadine Brandes was a book that I fell in love with after assuming I wouldn’t end up liking it. I had tried her Out of Time series prior to this and hadn’t been able to finish, so going in, I was nervous. This became one of my top reads for 2019 though, and I’m so glad I gave it a chance! Review here!
The Enchanted Sonata by Heather Dixon Wallwork became probably my most favorite stand-alone book read of 2019. The Pied Piper meets The Nutcracker in this amazing book, and I devoured it within a couple of days. Read it!
Finally, if you’re a writer looking for great advice, especially if you’re wanting to go the indie route, pick up anything by Joanna Penn. She’s my go-to now for writing and marketing help.
2019 Books That Didn’t Cut It:
The Art of Client Service by Robert Solomon. The back of the book was very misleading, making it sound as though this book would be universal in its help for all kinds of marketers. Instead, it’s geared toward corporations and consultants. If you’re one of those, this book is definitely for you! But as for being a self-marketer, this book didn’t have any information I could use.
How to Sell and Market Your Book by Darin Jewell. It’s a great book for beginners if you’re looking for something quick and easy to read, but 1) The author is European so none of the extra resources work for the USA, and 2) A lot of the information was outdated.
The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner. You guys have no idea how much I wanted to like this book, but the only part I liked was the last quarter, where there’s a big reveal that I didn’t see coming. The rest of the book read very “meh” to me, and I found my interest waning to other books constantly. Review can be found here.
All the Wind in the World by Samantha Mabry. This book is so hard to rate, honestly. I’m equal parts in love with it and disappointed. I would highly recommend reading it. The author portrays Hispanic culture well, and I loved that aspect. I also loved the characters. But the pacing is choppy and a lot of the events feel too slow or too fast or just outright unexpected, so there are parts that didn’t work for me.
Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier. It was good, but the simple answer is I wanted it to be more than it was. I do want to read the other books in this trilogy to see if it gets any better, but it’s another book where I found my interest waning.
It Happened at Christmas by Christen Krumm. This is probably my biggest disappointment of the year, as this book is not only written by an indie author, but it’s based off one of my all time favorite movies — While You Were Sleeping. The middle part is the best. I devoured the middle part within a couple of days because that’s where the characters and action truly shown. But the first six chapters were dull and full of so many typos that I nearly stopped reading, and the last chapter uses very convenient and unrealistic plot devices to make sure the characters have a happy ending. If you’re looking for a clean, YA romance Christmas read and you want to support an indie and don’t mind typos or convenient plot devices, I highly recommend it. Again, the middle was fantastic! It’s the rest that bothered me.
For 2020, my goal is to read 50 books, most of them being off my bookshelves since I have a problem with buying books and forgetting to read them. *hides* I also hope to read more indie books and then 3-5 classics this year. What are some of your reading goals for 2020? Have you read any of the books on my 2019 list? Thoughts?