This is a guest post by the lovely and amazing Maraia. Make sure to follow her on Twitter (@maraiazoo) or Instagram (@lettuce_read) for more bookish (and non-bookish) content! +++ “Top 10 Tuesday” is a weekly meme by The Broke and the Bookish
Thank you, Sebastian, for letting me post this on your blog! I’ve been wanting to write one of these posts for ages. 2016 was a pretty mediocre reading year, so I was surprised that I actually found enough 5-star reads for the list. I even had to cut out a few. (I was going to list these in the order I read them, but a certain someone is cruel and requested that I rank them. ;P)
1. A Gathering of Shadows by V. E. Schwab
This is definitely the book I obsessed over most this year, with lots of enabling from Crini and Sana. I read it three times within two months and would have kept listening to the audiobook over and over if I didn’t have so many other books to read. It made me swoon, it made me cry, and it left me desperate for (and afraid of) the third and final book. 10/10
2. Still by Zoran Drvenkar
I got this as a Christmas present from Sebastian, so it was one of the first books I read in 2016. It came with his highest recommendation, and it did not disappoint. I enjoyed the unique narration style, and the story was disturbing yet addictive – I felt uncomfortable and disgusting more than once while reading but couldn’t put the book down. I highly recommend Still to anyone who can read German. 10/10
3. The Lost & Found by Katrina Leno
I’ve been in a YA slump for much of the year, but this is one of the few YA novels that made it to my favorite books. I fell in love with Katrina Leno’s writing immediately, and her characters are all so precious and relatable. Also, I LOVE that the story is based around an internet friendship that becomes something more. I’ve “only” read The Lost & Found twice so far, but it has a permanent place on my rereads shelf. It’s also one of the books I recommended most this year. 10/10
4. This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab
I’m still waiting for Victoria Schwab to let me down, but I honestly can’t imagine that will ever happen. I love everything she writes, and This Savage Song is no different. It’s dark, clearly very personal to the author, and has one of my favorite characters of all time. I wish August were real so I could give him a hug. Victoria Schwab gets major bonus points for ignoring the “rules” and writing a YA novel without a romance. I’ve also read this book three times already. 10/10
5. Monster 1983, Staffeln 1 & 2, Ivar Leon Menger
My first audio drama, Monster 1983 blew me away. I’ve already listened to the first season twice this year, and I’m planning to listen to both it and season two again before the third season comes out next year. The cast of narrators is brilliant, and it’s one of those stories with so many details and clues that rereading it will never get boring. Both episodes ended with major cliffhangers, and I can’t wait to continue the series. 9/10
6. Morning Star by Pierce Brown
It’s so rare for series enders to live up to expectations (*coughs* The Raven King *coughs*), but Pierce Brown did not let me down. Morning Star made me cry, laugh, gasp in surprise, and smile contentedly. My expectations for the sequel series are just as high. 9/10
7. Den of Wolves by Juliet Marillier
Even though Juliet Marillier is one of my longest-standing favorite authors, I have to admit that I don’t love all of her books. Fortunately, her Blackthorn & Grim series lives up to my high standards for her, and reading Den of Wolves felt like coming home. It’s beautiful and heartbreaking, as any good Marillier novel should be. 9/10
8. Written in Bone by Simon Beckett
The second book in the David Hunter series, Written in Bone is definitely my favorite of the three I’ve read so far. The mystery hooked me right away, and it was full of exciting twists. I also love that it’s set on a desolate Hebridean isle. 9/10
9. Evil at Heart by Chelsea Cain
This series is not for the faint-hearted, but for everyone else, it’s a must-read. Evil at Heart is seriously one of the most messed up books I’ve read (even counting Cody McFadyen’s Smoky Barrett series), but somehow it’s still so good. It’s rare to read about a female serial killer, and Gretchen Lowell is a fascinating one. The relationship between her and Archie Sheridan is one of the most interesting parts of the book, and I appreciate that it’s not romanticized. I’m so glad Crini recommended this series to me. 9/10
10. Papierjunge by Kristina Ohlsson
I binged this series on audiobook this year and liked them all, but Papierjunge is the best. I particularly enjoyed the mystery in this one, and after five books, the characters have really grown on me. I hope Kristina Ohlsson continues this series, because I don’t seem myself getting tired of it soon. 9/10
Bonus: Radio Silence by Alice Oseman
I’m not adding this to my main list, since it doesn’t come out until next year, but Radio Silence is too amazing to go unmentioned. I started it with zero expectations after reading somewhere that it features a demisexual character and was rewarded with a special, heartbreaking story full of wonderful, diverse, relatable, and real characters. I highly recommend everyone add this to their 2017 TBRs. 9/10
Loved your list, Maraia. I’ll be patiently waiting for your YA reading slump to be over ;). Red Rising is on our buddy reading fails list, am I correct? Lol. I think Matt would really like it, so I mentioned to him that maybe I’ll buddy read it with him to give it another chance. We shall see. By the way, I’m impressed with how much you reread. That’s one of my goals for 2017.
Thanks! Haha, there have been a few great YA novels this year, it’s just that I’m really picky. Let me know if you have any ideas for buddy reads.
Didn’t you DNF Red Rising when we buddy read it? Lol.
Rereading is the best! You won’t regret it. 🙂
Well I am here to emphatically flail over #1, #3, #4 and #6!! (And pretend you didn’t insult my precious Raven King child. <3? JUST KIDDING. I shall not hold it against you.) But omg I think it's impossible for VE Schwab to disappoint at this rate. And bless her entire being for actually writing YA without romance. Although I'm going to be retracting my praise if she kills off everything I love in A Conjuring of Light. Help. I'm so scared. (And I didn't know you re-read AGOS so many times!! That's so impressive omg.)
RADIO SILENCE. <33 If the cover wasn't so dull I think I'd be buying that one just to hug it. (And, well, photograph it. Bookstagram calls.)
I loved your list, Maraia!!!
Thanks, Cait! And thanks for commenting. 😉
Hahaha, I LOVED the Pynch scenes! I’ll just forget the rest exists. xD
OMG, don’t even say that about AGOS. It’s definitely a possibility. (I might actually be disappointed at this point if the book doesn’t ruin me, lol.)
I really hope Sevro is in the sequel. He’s the best!
Maybe it’ll get a new cover? There’s still time in the next two months, right? No? *keeps hoping anyway*
Woohoo, I still can’t believe you’ve actually written a blog post but I’m happy you did! 🙂
It also makes me happy that quite a few of my recommendations made it onto your list and especially that Still ended up so high on it!
I have to admit that I’m a bit jealous that you found so many 5-star reads and even gave full points to four books when I couldn’t find even one book this year that completely blew me away 😀
„the story is based around an internet friendship that becomes something more.“ That story sounds vaguely familiar to me ;D
So which ones of the books on your list that I haven’t read yet would you want me to read or are you too afraid I would hate them? XD
Thanks again for writing this post, I really like the idea of us blogging together in the future 😉
Hey, I’ve written quite a few blog posts! They’re just sitting as drafts in my designed-but-not-launched blog. xD
You shouldn’t be surprised, haha. And most of the runners-up were recommendations from you. 😉
I was lucky that one of my favorite authors published TWO books this year! I really hope we have a better reading year in 2017, though. Hopefully limited reading time will force us to be picky. (I won’t even suggest DNF’ing… ;P)
That’s one of the reasons the book is so special! I have (most of) a review for that one, too.
I still don’t think you should read A Darker Shade of Magic, but let’s read This Savage Song next year. Den of Wolves is a definite no, but I really want you to read The Lost & Found and maybe even Radio Silence with me! Even though I am afraid. xD
Thanks for posting it on your blog! It’s very exciting. I like the idea, too. ;D
(Also, commenting is fun. xD)
Ah I loved this!! The first Maraia blogpost might actually be one of my favourite things of 2016! Actually, remove the „might“, it’s definitely a favourite! Will we be treated to further posts in 2017? **looks hopefully**
As for your book selections ? V.E.Schwab is just incredible! One of my wee book club buddies is reading This Savage Song over the holidays and I’m so nervous – I hope she loves it too! Evil At Heart sounds really interesting, I don’t think I’ve read a book with a female serial killer before. Also, I need to get back to Marillier in 2017! I loved the two books you recommended and have two more sat on my shelves. I’m so glad you enjoyed this book! Oh and the spin off Pierce Brown series – it has so much to live up to and I can’t wait!!
Loved your first post! You’re a natural! You have so much bookish knowledge and passion, and you write so beautifully! ?
Thank you so much, Rhoda! Your comment made me really happy. ? (And yes, we’re doing a joint TTT next week!)
Ooh, let me know what the book clubber thinks about ! I definitely recommend the Gretchen Lowell series if you don’t mind disturbing books, haha. And I can’t wait for you to read Child of the Prophecy. I’m always nervous it will disappoint people, though. Oh, I’ve just remembered – do you still want to buddy read the book you got me last year, or should I go ahead and start it? I want to make sure I read it in the next couple months, since I won’t be bringing books with me when I first move.
Eep, thank you again! Your words really mean a lot to me. <3
Hellooo, Maraia! So glad to finally see you blogging after everyone’s been pushing for you to start for years 😀 this seems like a good place to start. I absolutely loved A Gathering of Shadows as well, and can’t wait for A Conjuring of Light. I’m reading The Lost & Found for the #DAReadathon so I’ll soon be able to rave with you!
Yay, thanks for commenting, Inge!
Haha, yeah, so much for that blog I was starting. (But hey, it still might happen.) I really enjoyed writing the post, though, so there may be more to come!
I hope you love The Lost & Found as much as I do! I’m looking forward to hearing your thoughts.
Thanks for sharing this list, Maraia! Your recommendations are always great; you have a talent for writing about books and getting others interested in them!
I hadn’t realized that Den of Wolves was out, so I can’t wait to read that! Anything by Juliet Marillier always goes to the top of my list. And by V. E. Schwab. I haven’t read This Savage Song yet, either, so I’ll have to pick a time to read that when I can drop all other responsibilities and just dive into the pages. The one book that I’ve already read from this list is A Gathering of Shadows, and wow! It’s amazing. Even better than the first book, and I can’t wait for the third!
I haven’t read the other books on the list yet, so I’m excited to check those out on Goodreads and add them to things to read in 2017.
Here’s my list of top ten books that I read this year, not in any particular order (and not necessarily books that came out this year):
1) A Gathering of Shadows by V. E. Schwab
2) City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
3) The Light Between Oceans by M. L. Stedman
4) Mary Wept Over the Feet of Jesus by Chester Brown
5) Plainsong by Kent Haruf
6) Catching a Storyfish by Janice Harrington
7) The Wild Robot by Peter Brown
8) A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas
9) Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
10) Robin: Lady of Legend by R. M. ArceJaeger
Bonus) The Road to Avalon by Joan Wolf
Thanks for commenting, Mary! That’s so nice of you to say. 🙂
Let me know what you think about Den of Wolves! The sequel to This Savage Song comes out this summer, so you can binge them. Are you planning to read ACOL as soon as it comes out? I’m worried that my copy will arrive the day I move, haha.
You always read so many books I’ve never heard of! I’m trying to look them up on Goodreads, but it keeps crashing. xD I think Robin: Lady of Legend is on my TBR. The name sounds familiar.
OF COURSE two Schwab books made it onto your list! 😀 And making you rank your favorite reads is evilevilevil.
Den of Wolves has been popping up on „best of“ lists all over the blogosphere, I really need to read that series.
Aww and The Lost and Found sounds great! 🙂
Haha, it wouldn’t be a top 10 list without a Schwab book!
You can start it after you finish Child of the Prophecy. 😉
The Lost & Found is so cute! I hope you get to read it one day.