January 4, 2016

My 2015 Favorite Reads


I tried to limit myself to only ten. I really did! But do you know how hard that was?! 2015 was a great reading year for me. I fell in love with SO many awesome stories and when I took a moment to look them all over to try and narrow down my absolute favorites ever....yeah, that was hard. Plus it wasn't helped by the fact that I read several series this year which makes for almost ten books with just those! So! I decided to cheat a little bit (after all, this is my blog. I can do whatever I want, right? ;) and I'm going to lump a couple favorite series together. In other words, instead of counting all three books separately, I'm going to count them as just one on my list. Because I couldn't just pick one of the three! I loved them all! A reader's gotta do what a reader's gotta do.

Also. These are in no particular order either, so don't just scroll down to number one and assume that was my favorite of the entire year. I couldn't decide! (Sorry not sorry.) They're all amazing and wonderful and made me sigh with happiness once I finished the final page. Basically I went to my Goodreads list and started with the beginning of the year and went down, picking out all my faves along the way. Easy peasy! Only not.

Anyhoo! Here they are. Enjoy! :)


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North and South
by Elizabeth Gaskell
 
This should just be obvious. I loved it! The end. ;)

 
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by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner
 
Oh my goodness, this series! I loved that they could all be read as stand-alones (although they have one overarching big storyline that connects them, so it makes more sense to read them in order), I loved each couple's romance (seriously swoony guys here!), I loved every bit of this world that Ms. Kaufman and Ms. Spooner created, and I loved how each book's tension and suspense just built on the previous story (it was like the authors just kept getting better and better).


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The Scorpio Races
by Maggie Stiefvater

I don't know what else I could say about this story that my review didn't. Other than these characters refused to leave my head for days and days after I finished this book! Which is the highest praise I can give a story.


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Tiffany Girl
by Deeanne Gist
 
I have read and reread and reread all my favorite scenes in this book SO many times! Flossie is an intriguing mix of feisty and sweet and I loved every minute we get to spend with her. Definitely one of Ms. Gist's best!


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I was on the edge of my seat while I devoured this series. Despite a few clichÊs that I wish weren't there, I still absolutely loved Tess' story! Each book built on the tension so well that I felt as triumphant and exhausted as the characters themselves once the end came. :)


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The Bronte Plot
by Katherine Reay

I do believe that Ms. Reay only gets better with time! (Can you imagine what her stories will be like once she has bunches more published?!) Her characters never fail to make a deep impression on me. Lucy is flawed, but unforgettable and I loved how covertly she climbed into my heart until suddenly there she was embedded forever.


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by R.C. Lewis

Scifi fairytale retellings that are awesome? Yes please! :)


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by Amber Stokes

This short little story seriously packs a lot of cuteness into just a few pages! I've reread it several times and it never fails to make me grin. Ava and Keegan are in my heart to stay! :)


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By J.R.R. Tolkien

EPIC. That one word completely describes this amazing series.


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By Katie Ganshert

So much of this story made me think of You've Got Mail that it was obvious I would add this to my favorites list! I loved it to pieces!


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by Connie Almony

These characters gripped my heart and refused to let go! Watching as their layers are peeled back and their true selves revealed is a beautiful (and painful) thing.


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by Marissa Meyer

Now come on, you knew this one would be on my list, right? I only waited YEARS for it! ;) Ms. Meyer gave me everything and more that I'd been waiting for. An epic conclusion to an amazing series! Now I'm ready to reread them all again. :D


Well! That wasn't too many, was it? I listed twelve, with four series included in that (which, I know, makes nineteen books.). Like I said, it was hard to limit myself to just those! :) My reader's heart was so happy with the stories I read in 2015. (I almost said last year, which is technically true, but since 2015 was only three days ago.....it felt weird, okay?)

Here's to even more epic and awesome stories in 2016! Cannot wait to see what all our favorite writers have in store. :)



27 comments:

  1. Thanks so much for mentioning One Among Men!!! Really appreciated!

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    1. You're so welcome, Connie! It's a wonderful story. :)

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  2. Awesome list! I want to read the ones by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner, as well the ones by R.C. Lewis. I'm in a sci-fi kick, probably due to having recently read the amazing "Winter" and watching the new Star Wars film.
    I'm also interested in the Gifting books, and L.O.T.R. Like, I think I really might try to read some more Tolkien this year, having only read "The Hobbit" a decade or so ago.
    Happy New Year, Kara. Hope 2016 is fabulous for you! :-D

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    1. Thanks, Grace! Wasn't Winter SO good? But now I'm sad it's all over. Yay for rereading!

      I hope you do get to both of those series, I think they're all wonderful! And very unique. :)

      I put off reading LOTR for several years, but I am so, so glad I finally read the series! Mr. Tolkien's writing is EPIC. Please let me know if you do get to them and what you think! I'll be anxious to hear from another newbie. :)

      Thank you, I hope 2016 is fabulous for you as well!

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  3. I loved Stitching Snow too. I still need to read Spinning Starlight. I'm glad you liked it too. That makes me excited to read it. :)

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    1. Jenni: While I really enjoyed Spinning Starlight, I do admit that I didn't love it *quite* as much as Stitching Snow. But that does not mean it wasn't still fabulous because it so is! I hope you like it. Will look forward to hearing your thoughts on it. :)

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  4. Will absolutely think of you and Jamie when I finally pick up a Lord of the Rings book. Hopefully I'll like it too!

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    1. Ganise: I'm with Jamie, I really hope so too! :)

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  5. You already know my feelings on LOTR :)! I really need to get Winter too. Oh and I have The Gifting series on my kindle...waiting!! So many books!!

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    1. Jamie: I do indeed! :D And I know just what you mean, there are SO many more books I hope to get to this year. Yay for really tall TBR piles! I hope you enjoy The Gifting series, it's a great deal of fun. As is Winter!

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  6. I haven't heard of this Gifting series. Thanks for the heads up. I'm glad you finally read and loved The Scorpio Races. I love that book! I need to read Winter!

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    1. Jenny: YES to The Scorpio Races! It is so, so good! As is Winter. I hope you enjoy. Will look forward to hearing what you think of it! :) The Gifting series really is wonderful. It's got a few cliches that are standard for YA stories, but they didn't hinder my enjoyment at all. Happy reading!

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  7. I've been reading to read The Scorpio Races! This list is really fun; I'm glad you found so many books you loved last year! And if you want more Lunar Chronicles, I found out Meyer is publishing some short stories in the series next month. :) You may have already known that, but if not, there you go! I need to finish that series.

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    1. Oh Hannah. You should totally move The Scorpio Races up your TBR and get to it soon! It's amazing! :)

      And thanks. It's not fun when you try several books that aren't to your liking, so I'm pleased I found some fabulous stories last year.

      Yes! I am SO EXCITED for Stars Above! (And now it's less than a week until it's out! Yay!) I had heard about it, but thanks for letting me know just in case. Sometimes I don't always hear. :) Which book/books of the series have you read so far? And did you enjoy them (I hope)?

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    2. I've only read Cinder so far; not much at all. :/ I originally picked it up because it was a Truman Award Nominee a year or two ago. But what a unique series idea! And I did enjoy it! I just never remember this one when I'm picking another book to read. My book group is meeting when I can't go any more, so that will free up some of my reading time now, I guess. Maybe I'll get to them sooner!

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    3. Hannah: I'm so glad you liked it! And I completely agree, it's definitely a unique idea. And so well written! I think Ms. Meyer does an amazing job with adapting each fairytale into a scifi/space adventure.

      I completely understand about not finishing the series. There's just SO many great books out there to read! It's entirely too easy to get distracted. :D

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  8. Ahh, North and South... and The Bronte Plot.... and While You're Awake. Those are all on my favorites list, too! Thanks for the reminder about The Tiffany Girl... I need to get ahold of a copy. What a fun list!

    Here's mine: https://thegreenmockingbird.wordpress.com/2015/12/31/my-favorite-reads-of-2015/ :)

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    1. Aren't all those such good stories, Courtney? I loved your list, by the way! Thanks for sharing. :)

      Tiffany Girl is really excellent! I think you'll enjoy it. Do let me know what you think if/when you read it! :)

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  9. North and South made both our lists! Sweet!

    And yes. LOTR. Belongs on every Best List it can possibly be on.

    I have put The Bronte Plot on hold at the library. Hope to get it soon!

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    1. Hamlette: That's because it's awesome! :) As for LOTR, that is definitely for sure!!!

      I was glad to know you read and enjoyed TBP. Such a good book!

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  10. How did I forget Katie's "wedding" novella!? That was one of my favorites too. Also, The Bronte Plot and Amber's were among my most favorites too. So (so) good - here's to another amazing year of books. :)

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    1. Rissi: Right? Katie's novella is just so much fun! As is TBP and Amber's. And yes! 2016 is bound to be filled with loads of awesome stories!! :)

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  11. Some great books you've got here, Kara! Glad you got to read and enjoy LoTR! I haven't read Winter or the books by Katherine Reay yet, but those are both high on my list!

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    1. Thanks, Birdie! :) LOTR has been raved about by so many of you, I was very happy that it lived up to my expectations. Actually it surpassed them!

      Winter is so, so good. As is any of Katherine's stories! Will look forward to hearing what you think of them! :)

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  12. Really late in replying but yay for North & South and LOTR! =D Looks like you had a wonderful year in reading, Kara, I hope 2016 is just as awesome with plently more awesome books to check out :)

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    1. Somehow I just knew you'd appreciate the fact of N&S and LOTR on this list, Lianne! :D And yes, I did indeed have a really great year in reading. Hoping for the same for 2016 for you as well!

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