I’m so excited to participate in my first Top 10 Tuesday hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! I have just started following their blog and love it! I have increased my books-to-read pile by so many from all the great recommendations they made in this week’s post. Let’s be honest, that pile always grows faster than I can read.
I can’t believe 2015 is already half way over. Its fun to look back on this first part of the year and all the great books I have already finished. Looking forward to another great reading filled 6 months!
Bonus: Gilead by Marilynne Robinson // Technically, I finished this book at the very end of 2014, but I want to mention it because it is so fantastic. Robinson paints a beautiful picture of faith, repentance, and family in this uniquely written book about a small town preacher who learns to cope with changes in his town, family, and faith. His first person narration is written to his son so his son will remember him after he dies.
10. The Princess Bride by William Goldman // Just a fun read. I enjoyed the abridging scenario that Goldman creates with S. Morgenstern. I was surprised how true the movie is (which I love!) to the book. Most of the scenes and many of the lines come straight from the original text. “I am Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die” Classic.
9/8. Enna Burning and River Secrets by Shannon Hale // I am a big fan of Shannon Hale’s books–especially her clever story lines. These books are the 2nd and 3rd in the Goose Girl series. I highly recommend The Goose Girl too! I love these because the stories are captivating, easy to get into, and the characters are fantastic. If you love languages and love and friendship, I think you’ll love these books.
7. The Giver by Lois Lowry // This was a re-read for me. I read this book way back in middle school and can only remember bits of it (like the end scene when Jonah and Gabe ride down the snowy hill on a sled–does it really happen!?). I loved it even more this time. The ways Lowry explores the complexities of memory, culture, and society are fascinating.
6. The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgsen Burnett // While I was familiar with the story, I had never read this book before. It really is lovely. I love the timelessness of the story of friendship. These children really need each other and help each other find happiness. And it makes me want a secret garden of my own. Plus, fun fact, Maggie Smith is fantastic as Mrs. Medlock in the film adaptation.
5. A Little Princess by Frances Hodgsen Burnett // Let me just say, the film adaptations of this book do not do it justice. The novel is more complex and compelling. The story of Sara Crewe, this novel traces her fall from rich heiress to penniless servant and back. Throughout her trials, Sara remains convinced that she is a little princess.
4. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee // Another re-read, this time from high school. Wow, this book is fantastic! While I remembered the basic storyline, I did not remember the grace and elegance with which Lee creates a small southern town and it’s compelling group of characters. I came to love Scout, Jem, Atticus and Boo Radley as I learned about their lives and the complex racial issues facing them during the 1930s. The childlike point of view is genuis.
3. The Selection Series by Kiera Cass // One of my new favorite series! I read the first 3 in the series in only a few days. I love the cross between The Bachelor and Hunger Games. America Singer is likable and fiery. Maxon is dreamy and relatable. Lots and lots of love and all you want is to see these two get together throughout the whole series! What I love most is the complexities the Cass creates within this world. Its a love story, of course, but the themes run deeper than that. A great series!
2. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern // I had this book recommended to me and was blown away! The story centers around 2 young magicians who are in love and in a challenge to the death. Their venue is the night circus–a place where reality and magic collide. I loved the incredible description and the clever ways the chapters crossed through time and place. Highly recommend this one!
1. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr // This is a book you cannot speed read because you will miss a defining detail. The story is absolutely beautiful as Doerr creates characters that you learn to love and grow with inside a compelling and complex backdrop of WWII in Europe. Winner of the 2015 Pulitzer Prize, this novel is truly a fantastic feat of literary genius. A masterpiece.