Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday: Recent Five-Star Reads

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is top ten recent 5-star reads. I don’t hand out 5 stars easily, so here are the lucky few books that have earned all of the stars from me this year.

Recent Five-Star Reads

1. A Monster Calls – Patrick Ness (Author), Jim Kay (Illustrator), Siobhan Dowd (Concept)

The monster showed up after midnight. As they do.  
But it isn’t the monster Conor’s been expecting. He’s been expecting the one from his nightmare, the one he’s had nearly every night since his mother started her treatments, the one with the darkness and the wind and the screaming . . . . 
This monster is something different, though. Something ancient, something wild.  
And it wants the most dangerous thing of all from Conor.  
It wants the truth.

2. Midwinterblood – Marcus Sedgwick

Seven stories of passion and love separated by centuries but mysteriously intertwined—this is a tale of horror and beauty, tenderness and sacrifice. 
In 2073 on the remote and secretive island of Blessed, where rumor has it that no one ages and no children are born, a visiting journalist, Eric Seven, and a young local woman known as Merle are ritually slain. Their deaths echo a moment ten centuries before, when, in the dark of the moon, a king was slain, tragically torn from his queen. Their souls search to be reunited, and as mother and son, artist and child, forbidden lovers, and victims of a vampire they come close to finding what they've lost. 
In a novel comprising seven parts, each influenced by a moon—the flower moon, the harvest moon, the hunter's moon, the blood moon—this is the story of Eric and Merle, whose souls have been searching for each other since their untimely parting.

3. Burial Rites – Hannah Kent

Set against Iceland's stark landscape, Hannah Kent brings to vivid life the story of Agnes, who, charged with the brutal murder of her former master, is sent to an isolated farm to await execution. 
Horrified at the prospect of housing a convicted murderer, the family at first avoids Agnes. Only Tóti, a priest Agnes has mysteriously chosen to be her spiritual guardian, seeks to understand her. But as Agnes's death looms, the farmer's wife and their daughters learn there is another side to the sensational story they've heard.

4. To Kill A Mockingbird – Harper Lee

The unforgettable novel of a childhood in a sleepy Southern town and the crisis of conscience that rocked it, To Kill A Mockingbird became both an instant bestseller and a critical success when it was first published in 1960. It went on to win the Pulitzer Prize in 1961 and was later made into an Academy Award-winning film, also a classic. 
Compassionate, dramatic, and deeply moving, To Kill A Mockingbird takes readers to the roots of human behavior—to innocence and experience, kindness and cruelty, love and hatred, humor and pathos. Now with over 18 million copies in print and translated into forty languages, this regional story by a young Alabama woman claims universal appeal. Harper Lee always considered her book to be a simple love story. Today it is regarded as a masterpiece of American literature.

What’s your most recent five-star read?


  1. I agree that 5 stars are hard to come by! I love To Kill a Mockingbird. I really want to read A Monster Calls. Great list!

  2. It didn't make my list because I just finished it on Sunday, but Before We Were Strangers was my most recent 5 star read. I just could not put it down. I loved the characters and their relationship. So good!

  3. To Kill a Mockingbird has also made my list! :) I loved it so much and I loved everything in it, from the writing to the characters to the message it transmited us <3

    Cat @ Bubblegum Yellow

  4. I've read To Kill A Mockingbird and A Monster Calls and loved both. The others on here sound pretty good, too!
    Here's my Top Ten Tuesday

    Stacy Renee @ Lazy Day Literature

  5. To Kill a Mockingbird is a book that everyone really needs to read! My TTT

  6. I still really need to read A Monster Calls! I've been nervous about giving it a try, but maybe it's time. Great list! :D

    Here are my Top Ten!

  7. To Kill A Mockingbird is incredible, and I'm long overdue for a re-read!

  8. I'd love to get a copy of that illustrated A Monster Calls. I haven't read it yet, but I love the illustrations I see in reviews.

    Off topic but I really like the design of your blog, especially the paper background with the creases and everything. I think that's pretty cool.

    **I'll do a happy dance too after posting this comment. :)**

  9. YES to A Monster Calls and TKAM. I keep seeing Midwinterblood around (and love the cover), but am not a horror fan, so I'm unsure. Burial Rites sounds interesting--there's a definite deficit of Icelandic settings in my life!

    My most recent five star read is Drowned City: Hurricane Katrina and New Orleans. My TTT is at http://falconerslibrary.blogspot.com/2016/03/ttt-ten-tens.html, and I really want to learn how to make that into a link like other commenters do!

  10. I still haven't read To Kill A Mockingbird - THE SHAME. I've been really looking forward to reading A Monster Calls, though, especially knowing it's being made into a film.

  11. I completely agree with A Monster's Call (so emotional and heartfelt) and Midwinterblood (so intelligently written and the way the stories came together was brilliant). So glad you liked them both too! Thanks for sharing and, as always, fabulous post! <3

    ~ Zoe @ Stories on Stage

  12. I read TKAM many many a year ago. I probably should read it again one day. Nice list!

  13. I really loved A Monster Calls too although I wasn't expecting to! It was a really nice surprise and a lovely story. I haven't read TKAM since I was in school but I do remember enjoying it. I think it might be worth a reread actually!

  14. I'm pretty picky when it comes to what books I give five stars too! I didn't even notice when I became this picky.. anyway, I do like the looks of a lot of them. The majority are already on my TBR so this makes things look positive. And I've already read TKAMB and I think it is so meaningful <3

  15. A Monster Calls is one of those books that I've been meaning to read for a very long time!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

  16. Everyone always talks about A Monster Calls, and it makes me really wish that I read it. It's on my TBR, but I just need to find the time to buy it and read it.

    I also love To Kill a Mockingbird! It's one of my favorite books to read and to teach. :)

  17. Glad to hear you enjoyed Burial Rites, I think I might give that one a go. I want to do audio for that one because I loved Morven Christie narrating Code Name Verity.