Hi friends! I’m back to talk about the 5 books I truly adored this year! By which I mean last year because as per usual, this post is late hehe! So let’s talk about these, in no particular order!
I cannot sing the praises of this book enough. I’m an avid fiction reader, so the idea of me even looking at a non-fiction book with vague interest, let alone reading it, is like the moon and the sun having a wedding on Mars. But! I read this on recommendation from a couple IRL friends, and it is…incredible. Goff incorporates stories of real people, people whose lives haven’t always been great. Yet, each of them have taught him something about living life to the fullest and loving others. This is somehow emotional, funny, inspirational, and entertaining all at once. Sometimes, Christian books feel preachy and dry. Everybody, Always is a book that is neither of those things. It’s simply a book about loving others the way Jesus would: that is, loving everybody, always.
I really need to reread it. However, while this book was extraordinarily confusing, it was also just…extraordinary. It’s a story within a story about stories. This book feels whimsical in a very loose way, almost as if the author left it up to the reader to interpret the layers upon layers of story into something individually applicable. I loved its non-linearity, its wonderfully diverse cast of characters, its focus on the heart of stories. Sure, The Starless Sea isn’t for everyone. But for those who do enjoy it, it is a rare treat of the imagination.
I started this series in 2020, and oh my gosh. Again, this isn’t for everyone. But I personally adored the rich prose Roshani Chokshi writes with, accompanied by what is now one of my all-time favorite cast of characters. Each and every one feels fully realized, and there’s so much diversity and talk of things such as colonization and racism. On top of that, the heists, puzzles, and magical artifacts set in a parallel historical Paris and Russia were just so enthralling to read about. I am terrified for the conclusion.
I still have to write a review for this one, but uh spoiler alert: I loved it. Down Comes The Night is a gorgeous debut that features some of my most favorite things of ever! An unsettling gothic atmosphere, a slow, heart-pounding enemies-to-lovers romance, complex politics, interesting magic…this is a fantastic YA fantasy standalone in every sense of the genre. Yeah, maybe I should save some thoughts for the review.
I only managed to read one translated book last year. However, it was amazing. I’m used to fantasy stories full of high-stakes, and constant tension. The Beast Player felt like a fantasy story along the likes of Studio Ghibli: slow, quiet, and beautiful. Don’t get me wrong, there’s action. But the main focus is on a young girl who can talk to one of the most dangerous creatures in the land, and befriends them. We get to see her grow throughout different chapters in her life. As the politics of the land get more and more tense, the story grows into a truly incredible novel that’s less entertaining and more reflective, about one girl’s passion to save the beasts she cares so much about. It’s an experience that truly can only be compared to the tremendous sense of wonder one gets from watching Howl’s Moving Castle or My Neighbor Totoro.
That’s it! Here’s the first part in case you missed it! Talk to me about your favorites below!