Thursday, July 4, 2019

Discussion: Best Books Of 2019 (So Far)

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The year is more than half over, so it’s time to look at the best books I’ve read in 2019 (so far). Honestly, it’s been a terrible reading year for me. I’ve only finished 38 books. Usually I’m at 50+ by the halfway point. This is work’s fault. I currently spend most of my time working, commuting to work, or sleeping because I’m exhausted from work. But, let’s focus on the positive. Here are the best books I’ve read so far in 2019. They’re not in any order because I can’t choose a favorite-favorite! They’re all my favorites. Click the titles to see why I love them.

Best Books Of 2019 (So Far)

The Miscalculations Of Lightning Girl by Stacy McAnulty

Lucy Callahan was struck by lightning. She doesn't remember it, but it changed her life forever. The zap gave her genius-level math skills, and ever since, Lucy has been homeschooled. Now, at 12 years old, she's technically ready for college. She just has to pass 1 more test—middle school!

Lucy's grandma insists: Go to middle school for 1 year. Make 1 friend. Join 1 activity. And read 1 book (that's not a math textbook!). Lucy's not sure what a girl who does calculus homework for fun can possibly learn in 7th grade. She has everything she needs at home, where nobody can make fun of her rigid routines or her superpowered brain. The equation of Lucy's life has already been solved. Unless there's been a miscalculation?

The Arsonist by Stephanie Oakes

Molly Mavity is not a normal teenage girl. For one thing, she doesn’t believe that her mother killed herself three years ago. And since her father is about to be executed for his crimes, Molly is convinced that her mother will return to her soon. Finally, the hole in her heart will stop hurting.

Pepper Al-Yusef is not your average teenage boy. A Kuwaiti immigrant with serious girl problems and the most embarrassing seizure dog in existence, he has to write a series of essays over the summer . . . or fail out of school.

And Ava Dreyman—the brave and beautiful East German resistance fighter whose murder at seventeen led to the destruction of the Berlin Wall—is unlike anyone you’ve met before.

When Molly and Pepper are tasked with finding Ava’s murderer, they realize there’s more to her life—and death—than meets the eye. Someone is lying to them. And someone out there is guiding them along, desperate for answers.

After Zero by Christina Collins

Elise carries a notebook full of tallies, each page marking a day spent at her new public school, each stroke of her pencil marking a word spoken. A word that can't be taken back. Five tally marks isn't so bad. Two is pretty good. But zero? Zero is perfect. Zero means no wrong answers called out in class, no secrets accidentally spilled, no conversations to agonize over at night when sleep is far away.

But now months have passed, and Elise isn't sure she could speak even if she wanted to―not to keep her only friend, Mel, from drifting further away―or to ask if anyone else has seen her English teacher's stuffed raven come to life. Then, the discovery of a shocking family secret helps Elise realize that her silence might just be the key to unlocking everything she's ever hoped for.

Three Things About Elsie by Joanna Cannon

There are three things you should know about Elsie. The first thing is that she’s my best friend. The second is that she always knows what to say to make me feel better. And the third thing might take a bit more explaining.

Eighty-four-year-old Florence has fallen in her flat at Cherry Tree Home for the Elderly. As she waits to be rescued, she wonders if a terrible secret from her past is about to come to light. If the charming new resident is who he claims to be, why does he look exactly like a man who died sixty years ago?

Daughter Of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor

Around the world, black hand prints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil's supply of human teeth grows dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she's prone to disappearing on mysterious "errands"; she speaks many languages—not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she's about to find out.

When one of the strangers—beautiful, haunted Akiva—fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

The Science Of Breakable Things by Tae Keller

How do you grow a miracle?

For the record, this is not the question Mr. Neely is looking for when he says everyone in class must answer an important question using the scientific method. But Natalie's botanist mother is suffering from depression, so this is The Question that's important to Natalie. When Mr. Neely suggests that she enter an egg drop competition, Natalie has hope.

Eggs are breakable. Hope is not.

Natalie has a secret plan for the prize money. She's going to fly her mother to see the Cobalt Blue Orchids—flowers that survive against impossible odds. The magical flowers are sure to inspire her mother to love life again. Because when parents are breakable, it's up to kids to save them, right?

When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead

Miranda is an ordinary sixth grader, until she starts receiving mysterious messages from somebody who knows all about her, including things that have not even happened yet. Each message brings her closer to believing that only she can prevent a tragic death. Until the final note makes her think she’s too late.

What’s the best book you read in 2019?


  1. Lightning Girl was absolutely wonderful! It was such a feel-good book, and there was math and an awesome grandma and cute dogs. I'm a fan.

  2. The smoke and bone and all the other books in that series are among my tippity top faves of my life.

  3. Great list! I remember loving DAUGHTER OF SMOKE & BONE back when I read it, and THE SCIENCE OF BREAKABLE THINGS looks like a cute read :)

    Thus far, a new release I've loved is The Wicked King. An older read that I discovered and loved is the Farseer Trilogy by Robin Hobb.

  4. The synopsis of Three Things About Elsie is intriguing. I've not heard of it before but I'm off to go look it up. :)

  5. The Arsonist is one I've been really wanting to check out! I'm so glad you enjoyed Daughter of Smoke and Bone so much, and The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl sounds wonderful!

  6. So far I have several but a big crush was Sorcery of Thorns!!!

  7. You're right, it IS hard to narrow it down. I simply cannot. But of your list, I really want to read The Arsonist and DoSaB so I am very glad to see them appear on the list!

  8. After Zero is getting added to my TBR now lol.
    The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren is a recent addition to the Favorites of 2019 so far list for me!

  9. My best book is the first book I read this year-A Dance With Dragons part 2!

  10. Thirty eight books still is an excellent number. :) Your list just reminded me how much I want to re-read Daughter of Smoke and Bone and then finally finish the series!!!

    Happy readings! ;)
    Tรขnia @MyLovelySecret

  11. All of these sound excellent.

    I've been reading parenting books mostly this year. The Gentle Parenting Book by Sarah Ockwell-Smith really spoke to my style of parenting and so I've been devouring all of the other books I have by her now. :-)

    Cait @ Of Needles and Noodles

  12. I really love the Daughter of Smoke and Bone novels, they're such unique, well-written fantasy books that I was immersed in from start to finish. I haven't yet read The Arsonist, but I loved the author's debut, so I'm incredibly excited for this one, as well. Glad you found so many great books in 2019 so far! :)

  13. I actually haven't read any of these! Two of my favorites so far have been Daisy Jones & The Six and Recursion.

  14. Ahh what a lovely list! I haven't read any of these except from Daughter of Smoke and Bone, which was a lovely read! :)

  15. I also loved When You Reach Me! ๐Ÿ˜

    I think I added After Zero to my Goodreads TBR, but I'm going to hop over there right now and make sure. Thanks for the recs! ๐Ÿ‘✨

    1. I also checked Hoopla and they have the audio! ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿ™Œ

  16. I really want to try that Laini Taylor series, so I'm happy to see it made your list!

  17. I've only read 1 book on this list, which is Daughter of Smoke and Bone a few years ago. I never continued on in the series, maybe I need to go back and finish out the series!

    ~ Kendra @ Kendra Loves Books

  18. I haven't tried any of these yet, but Daughter of Smoke and Bone is one I definitely want to read. I loved her Strange the Dreamer duology.

  19. Three Things About Elsie sounds super good. And one of my colleagues keeps trying to get me to read The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl. This is a great list.

  20. I've not read any of your favourites yet, though a couple are on my TBR.
    I'd add How We Disappeared by Jing-Jing Lee and Lost Children Archive by Valeria Luiselli (amongst others!)

  21. I definitely need to pickup up that series by Laini Taylor! I feel like I'm the last person to read it lol. Favorites so far this year are Fraternize by RVD, Soul in Darkness by Wendy Higgins. Bad Influence by Charleigh Rose and the Sunset Rising Trilogy by S.M. McEachen. I'm sure I'm missing some ack.
    Jen @ Star-Crossed Book Blog