My Top Ten Books You Should Read Someday

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I dread the question: What’s your favorite book ever?

I read so much (typically between 100-200 books a year), that it’s hard to 1) remember everything 2) pick just one! It’s like someone asking me which of the three is my favorite nephew.

If figured I could probably handle a top ten list of books I love that I think others should read (if they haven’t already). I know I’m going to probably miss some good ones, so maybe there will be a follow up! Haha.

The numbers do not represent the order in which I prefer them, they’re just there to help you count.

Drum roll please!

10: Daughter of Smoke and Bone 

Beautifully written, the book transports me to Prague and Marrakech–two places I know very little about– and spins an extraordinary tale of teeth being used to make wishes and leading a double life. I found it to be a really unique story and one that pulled me right in.  The sequel was quite enjoyable as well.

9: The Fionavar Tapestry 

Okay, so maybe I’m cheating a little because this one is a trilogy, but I like to look at series as one long book broken up into smaller ones, so to me, it counts as one!  I’m not normally a huge fan of high fantasy (sorry, definitely not a LotR mega fan) but Kay is different from most fantasy authors in that he doesn’t front load his world building, but rather weaves it in as the story progresses so you learn as you go instead of cramming it all in there at the beginning before actually getting to the plot.  This series takes place in contemporary Canada and Fionavar and is an interesting twist on Arthurian Legend.

8: To Kill a Mockingbird

Admittedly, I’m not a big fan of “classics” because I typically find I can’t relate well and then they bore me, but this book stuck with me since I first read it back in high school. I like to suggest this one to non-readers too since it’s one of the very few book to film adaptations where the movie may actually surpass the book. If you don’t read, watch the flick, Harper Lee probably wouldn’t mind.

7: The Fault in Our Stars

I adore John Green. I think I’ve fallen in love with everything he’s written, but TFiOS trumps them all, for me at least  His writing is so real. Always an emotional roller coaster, which you love to ride but also want to get off of because you’ve run out of tissues and your eyes are all red and puffed up making it hard to read the pages. Amazing characters fighting the dreaded C word…you’ll love them and hurt for them.  It’s worth the pain.

6: The Master and Margarita

Russian lit isn’t for everyone, but this one is comical and Bulgakov does an amazing job of weaving one story inside the other.  The Devil comes to St. Petersburge and wants to throw a party, but he needs a queen for the night.  Enter Margarita who makes a Faustian deal to save her “Master” who is imprisoned for writing a book about Jesus from Pontius Pilate‘s PoV. You don’t have to be religious to enjoy it, although if you know the story of JC and Pilate you might understand things a little more, but there’s a lot of humor with a giant talking cat and people getting naked. Good stuff!

5: Graceling

This book is part of a different kind of series. The second in the grouping, Fire, seems to be a bit disconnected from the first book until you read the third in the series, Bitterblue which does a great job bringing all three together. So good that I had to go back and re-read the first two to see how I missed connections.  A great fantasy series with strong female characters. Cashore spins her story well and I love that it was a different take on a series, bringing together two worlds you didn’t even know were connected.

4: Break

I don’t remember how I came across Hannah Moskowitz’s debut book, but I’m so glad I did. She has a unique writing style and the idea behind this book, that Jonah wants to break every bone in his body because they grow back stronger and he needs the strength to deal with his sick brother, is pretty damn amazing.

3: The Stand

Yes I know, it’s like a billion pages long, but King is pretty brilliant in the way he keeps so many story lines going and how he ties everything all together.  No movie or mini-series will ever do this book justice, there’s just far too much information and little tidbits that won’t come across well in film form. M-O-O-N spells why you should read this book.

2: Going Bovine

A dark comedy where a teenaged boy finds he’s got a disease and goes on a journey with a lawn gnome.  Sounds odd, I know, but it’s funny and touching at the same time.  I wouldn’t doubt you’d need tissues somewhere along the way.  Libba Bray does literary comedy quite well, something I feel is lacking in many of today’s novels.  Another of her books, Beauty Queens, is also great for a laugh.

1: A Song of Ice and Fire (aka Game of Thrones)

For someone who doesn’t like high fantasy, I cannot get enough of this series.  Martin absolutely amazes me to be able to carry on so many complicated story lines that remain interesting and exciting and keeping the reader guessing as to how things are going to work out.  I don’t think I’ve ever hated a villain more than his Theon Greyjoy, yet now, he’s trying to get readers to feel sorry for the guy and it might just work.. You know it’s great writing when he kills off all the characters you love yet you STILL keep reading! It’s one of the series where you want to know the ending, to see what happens, but at the same time you want it to go on forever so you can continue to be in the lives of your favorite characters.

What are some of your favorite reads?

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