Top Ten Favorite Reads of 2016

I completed my Goodreads 2016 Reading Challenge by 148%, reading 37 of 25 books this year. Go me! I read a mixture of books this year including some highly anticipated new releases by my favorite authors, debut authors, independent authors, diverse authors and stories, and so on. I also completed my first audiobook and my first graphic novel. This year I really wanted to explore books that were outside of my usual picks (especially trying to read more grounded and contemporary fiction), and for the most part, I ended up loving every second. Without further ado, here are my Top Ten Favorite Reads of 2016.

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Blood For Blood Release Blitz + Giveaway!

I am so excited that BLOOD FOR BLOOD by Ryan Graudin releases today and that I get to share the news, along with an awesome giveaway!

If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by Ryan, be sure to check out all the details below.

This blitz also includes a giveaway for 5 finished copies of book 1, WOLF BY WOLF! US only. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

About The Book:

  • Title: BLOOD FOR BLOOD
  • Author: Ryan Graudin
  • Pub. Date: November 1, 2016
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
  • Format: Hardcover, paperback, eBook
  • Find it: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Goodreads 

The action-packed, thrilling sequel to Ryan Graudin’s Wolf by Wolf.
There would be blood.
Blood for blood.
Blood to pay.
An entire world of it.

For the resistance in 1950s Germany, the war may be over, but the fight has just begun.

Death camp survivor Yael, who has the power to skinshift, is on the run: the world has just seen her shoot and kill Hitler. But the truth of what happened is far more complicated, and its consequences are deadly. Yael and her unlikely comrades dive into enemy territory to try to turn the tide against the New Order, and there is no alternative but to see their mission through to the end, whatever the cost.

But dark secrets reveal dark truths, and one question hangs over them all: how far can you go for the ones you love?

This gripping, thought-provoking sequel to Wolf by Wolf will grab readers by the throat with its cinematic writing, fast-paced action, and relentless twists.

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Waiting on Wednesday: Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event that is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine and spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

  • Title: Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy
  • Author: Cassandra Clare
  • Expected Publication Date: November 15th, 2016
  • Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
  • Read more at Goodreads.

Synopsis: The New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling collection of short stories chronicling the adventures of Simon Lewis as he trains to become a Shadowhunter is now available in print for the first time with ten brand-new comic illustrations!

Simon Lewis has been a human and a vampire, and now he is becoming a Shadowhunter. The events of City of Heavenly Fire left him stripped of his memories, and Simon isn’t sure who he is anymore. So when the Shadowhunter Academy reopens, Simon throws himself into this new world of demon-hunting, determined to find himself again. Whomever this new Simon might be.

But the Academy is a Shadowhunter institution, which means it has some problems. Like the fact that non-Shadowhunter students have to live in the basement. At least Simon’s trained in weaponry—even if it’s only from hours of playing D&D.

Join Simon on his journey to become a Shadowhunter, and learn about the Academy’s illustrious history along the way, through guest lecturers such as Jace Herondale, Tessa Gray, and Magnus Bane. Written by Cassandra Clare, Sarah Rees Brennan, Maureen Johnson, and Robin Wasserman, these moving and hilarious short stories are perfect for the fan who just can’t get enough of the Shadowhunters.

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Waiting On Wednesday: Wing Jones

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event that is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine and spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

Wing Jones

  • Title: Wing Jones (The Heartbeats of Wing Jones)
  • Author: Katherine Webber
  • Expected Publication: January 5th, 2017
  • U.S. Expected Publication: March 14th, 2017
  • Publisher: Walker Books/Delacorte Books
  • Read more at Goodreads.

Synopsis:Jandy Nelson meets Friday Night Lights in this sweeping, warm, arrestingly original novel about family, strength, and hope.

Wing Jones, like everyone else in her town, has worshipped her older brother, Marcus, for as long as she can remember. Good-looking, popular, and the star of the football team, Marcus is everything his sister is not.

Until the night everything changes when Marcus, drunk at the wheel after a party, kills two people and barely survives himself. With Marcus now in a coma, Wing is crushed, confused, and angry. She is tormented at school for Marcus’s mistake, haunted at home by her mother and grandmothers’ grief. In addition to all this, Wing is scared that the bank is going to repossess her home because her family can’t afford Marcus’s mounting medical bills.

Every night, unable to sleep, Wing finds herself sneaking out to go to the school’s empty track. When Aaron, Marcus’s best friend, sees her running one night, he recognizes that her speed, skill, and agility could get her spot on the track team. And better still, an opportunity at a coveted sponsorship from a major athletic gear company. Wing can’t pass up the opportunity to train with her longtime crush and to help her struggling family, but can she handle being thrust out of Marcus’s shadow and into the spotlight?

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Waiting On Wednesday: The Burning World

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event that is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine and spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

The Burning World

  • Title: The Burning World
  • Author: Isaac Marion
  • Expected Publication: February 7th, 2017
  • Publisher: Atria/Emily Bestler Books
  • Read more at Goodreads.

Synopsis: Being alive is hard. Being human is harder. But since his recent recovery from death, R is making progress. He’s learning how to read, how to speak, maybe even how to love, and the city’s undead population is showing signs of life. R can almost imagine a future with Julie, this girl who restarted his heart—building a new world from the ashes of the old one.

And then helicopters appear on the horizon. Someone is coming to restore order. To silence all this noise. To return things to the way they were, the good old days of stability and control and the strong eating the weak. The plague is ancient and ambitious, and the Dead were never its only weapon.

How do you fight an enemy that’s in everyone? Can the world ever really change? With their home overrun by madmen, R, Julie, and their ragged group of refugees plunge into the otherworldly wastelands of America in search of answers. But there are some answers R doesn’t want to find. A past life, an old shadow, crawling up from the basement.

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Top Ten Tuesday #3: Fictional Schools I Wish Were Real

Top Ten Tuesday is a bookish meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

For this week’s back-to-school freebie, I thought it would be fun to revisit some of my favorite fictional institutes that I wish I could have attended! From wizards and witches, and superheroes and villains in training, to It girls on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, walking the halls with these characters would have certainly made school a lot more interesting.

ttt-fictionalschools

ttt-fictionalschools2

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Waiting On Wednesday: Our Chemical Hearts

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event that is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine and spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

Our Chemical Hearts

  • Title: Our Chemical Hearts
  • Author: Krystal Sutherland
  • Expected Publication: September 6th, 2016
  • Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
  • Read more at Goodreads.

Synopsis: Henry Page has never been in love. He fancies himself a hopeless romantic, but the slo-mo, heart palpitating, can’t-eat-can’t-sleep kind of love that he’s been hoping for just hasn’t been in the cards for him—at least not yet. Instead, he’s been happy to focus on his grades, on getting into a semi-decent college and finally becoming editor of his school newspaper. Then Grace Town walks into his first period class on the third Tuesday of senior year and he knows everything’s about to change.

Grace isn’t who Henry pictured as his dream girl—she walks with a cane, wears oversized boys’ clothes, and rarely seems to shower. But when Grace and Henry are both chosen to edit the school paper, he quickly finds himself falling for her. It’s obvious there’s something broken about Grace, but it seems to make her even more beautiful to Henry, and he wants nothing more than to help her put the pieces back together again. And yet, this isn’t your average story of boy meets girl. Krystal Sutherland’s brilliant debut is equal parts wit and heartbreak, a potent reminder of the bittersweet bliss that is first love.

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Top Ten Tuesday #2: Most Underrated Books

 

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. This week’s topic was Top Ten Books With Less Than 2,000 Ratings. I altered it a bit to my Top Ten Eight Underrated Books.

Odd Thomas by Dean Koontz
↳ Read more at Goodreads.
“The dead don’t talk. I don’t know why.” But they do try to communicate, with a short-order cook in a small desert town serving as their reluctant confidant. Odd Thomas thinks of himself as an ordinary guy, if possessed of a certain measure of talent at the Pico Mundo Grill and rapturously in love with the most beautiful girl in the world, Stormy Llewellyn.

 

 

 

Pitch Black by Steven Sidor
↳ Read more at Goodreads.
It’s Christmas Eve, and Vera Coffey is on the run. She doesn’t know the men who are after her. She has never seen them before,but she has seen the horrors they visit on people who don’t give them what they want. Vera has something they want badly. She’d give it up if it weren’t the only thing keeping her alive. With a thriller so fast-paced that it’s impossible to let go and an ominous sense that everything is destined to go wrong, Pitch Dark is an intense read from a master of suspense.

 

The Hollow City by Dan Wells
↳ Read more at Goodreads.
Michael Shipman is paranoid schizophrenic; he suffers from hallucinations, delusions, and complex fantasies of persecution and horror. That’s bad enough. But what can he do if some of the monsters he sees turn out to be real? Who can you trust if you can’t even trust yourself? The Hollow City is a mesmerizing journey into madness, where the greatest enemy of all is your own mind.

 

 

The Pigman by Paul Zindell

↳ Read more at Goodreads.
When sophomores John and Lorraine played a practical joke a few months ago on a stranger named Angelo Pignati, they had no idea what they were starting. Virtually overnight, almost against their will, the two befriended the lonely old man; it wasn’t long before they were more comfortable in his house than their own. But now Mr. Pignati is dead. And for John and Lorraine, the only way to find peace is to write down their friend’s story – the story of the Pigman.

 

I Am Not A Serial Killer by Dan Wells
↳ Read more at Goodreads.
John Wayne Cleaver is dangerous, and he knows it. He’s spent his life doing his best not to live up to his potential. He’s obsessed with serial killers, but really doesn’t want to become one. So for his own sake, and the safety of those around him, he lives by rigid rules he’s written for himself, practicing normal life as if it were a private religion that could save him from damnation.

 

 

The Complete Perseopolis by Marjane Satrapi
↳ Read more at Goodreads.
Persepolis is the story of Satrapi’s unforgettable childhood and coming of age within a large and loving family in Tehran during the Islamic Revolution; of the contradictions between private life and public life in a country plagued by political upheaval; of her high school years in Vienna facing the trials of adolescence far from her family; of her homecoming–both sweet and terrible; and, finally, of her self-imposed exile from her beloved homeland.

 

The Coldest Winter Ever by Sister Souljah
↳ Read more at Goodreads.
Ghetto-born, Winter is the young, wealthy daughter of a prominent Brooklyn drug-dealing family. Quick-witted, sexy, and business-minded, she knows and loves the streets like the curves of her own body. But when a cold Winter wind blows her life in a direction she doesn’t want to go, her street smarts and seductive skills are put to the test of a lifetime. Unwilling to lose, this ghetto girl will do anything to stay on top.

 

The Spectacular Now by Tim Tharpe
↳ Read more at Goodreads.
SUTTER KEELY. HE’S the guy you want at your party. He’ll get everyone dancing. He’ll get everyone in your parents’ pool. Okay, so he’s not exactly a shining academic star. He has no plans for college and will probably end up folding men’s shirts for a living. But there are plenty of ladies in town, and with the help of Dean Martin and Seagram’s V.O., life’s pretty fabuloso, actually.

Note: I’m aware this novel is very popular because of the movie, but I don’t know a lot of people who have actually read the book. I urge you: READ THE BOOK!

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