So I had a pretty bad reading year this year and although I read a lot of books, but my average rating was 3.2 and there weren’t many books that I LOVED. There were a fair amount of ones I really liked, but not enough for me to be able to rank them or compare them to each other, so this list is really short. Hopefully it will be longer again next year.
6: The Golem and the Djinni by Helene Wecker
The Golem and the Djinni by Helene Wecker is an Adult Fantasy novel and can be read as a standalone, although I believe a sequel is in the works.
This is set in the past and follows a Polish Golem and a Syrian Djinni in New York City. The relationships between the main characters were precious and real, the writing was gorgeous and the book was just gorgeous overall. Definitely recommend for fans of The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern.
Chava is a golem, a creature made of clay, brought to life by a strange man who dabbles in dark Kabbalistic magic. Ahmad is a djinni, a being of fire, born in the ancient Syrian Desert. Trapped in an old copper flask by a Bedouin wizard centuries ago, he is released accidentally by a tinsmith in a Lower Manhattan shop.
Struggling to make their way in 1899 New York, the Golem and the Djinni try to fit in with their immigrant neighbours while masking their true selves. Meeting by chance, they become unlikely friends whose tenuous attachment challenges their opposing natures, until the night a terrifying incident drives them back into their separate worlds. But a powerful menace will soon bring the Golem and the Jinni together again, threatening their existence and forcing them to make a fateful choice.
Marvellous and compulsively readable, The Golem and the Djinni weaves strands of folk mythology, historical fiction, and magical fable into a wondrously inventive and unforgettable tale.
5: The Icarus Show by Sally Christie
The Icarus Show by Sally Christie is a Middle Grade-bordering-on-YA contemporary novel. It is truly a middle grade novel, but the complexity and darkness of the topics discussed make it suitable only for very mature middle grade readers.
This books deals with bullying and suicide in young children of about 11 or 12. It’s not a light-hearted book and yet it made me smile reading it, which almost made it all the more heart-breaking. The book is beautifully written and the story itself is incredibly unique. It’s hard to explain the amazing roller coaster which was this book, so just read it for yourself and I promise you won’t regret it.
Alex has worked out a foolproof way to avoid being picked on. Don’t React. It’s so simple, it’s brilliant! David does react and becomes an outcast, nicknamed Bogsy. He’s branded a weirdo and Alex is determined to avoid the same fate. But one day, Alex gets a note in his bag that forces him out of his safe little world. Who sent the note? And is it true – will a boy really fly? A powerful story about friendship, loneliness and a strange kind of genius.
4: Tower of Dawn by Sarah J. Maas
Tower of Dawn by Sarah J. Maas is the 6th book in the YA/NA High Fantasy series “Throne of Glass” and follows Chaol as well as other new characters and some characters from The Assassin’s Blade. Obviously I won’t talk too much about it seeing as it’s so many books into the series (the description is from the first book), but Sarah J. Maas had really good representation, relationships and general awesomeness in this book!
Meet Celaena Sardothien.
Destined for greatness.
In the dark, filthy salt mines of Endovier, an eighteen-year-old girl is serving a life sentence. She is a trained assassin, the best of her kind, but she made a fatal mistake. She got caught.
Young Captain Westfall offers her a deal: her freedom in return for one huge sacrifice. Celaena must represent the prince in a to-the-death tournament—fighting the most gifted thieves and assassins in the land. Live or die, Celaena will be free. Win or lose, she is about to discover her true destiny. But will her assassin’s heart be melted?
3: Every Heart A Doorway by Seanan McGuire
Another really lyrical, beautiful book. This one is Fantasy but with a bit of a Magical Realism feel and is the first book in the YA series “Wayward Children”. I really loved the worlds described in Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire and I loved the writing style as well. I will admit that although the world of the main character intrigued me, I was more into other characters as, well, people. In any case I’m really looking forward to reading the rest of the series. These are great for listening to on audiobook by the way!
Eleanor West’s Home for Wayward Children
Children have always disappeared under the right conditions; slipping through the shadows under a bed or at the back of a wardrobe, tumbling down rabbit holes and into old wells, and emerging somewhere… else.
But magical lands have little need for used-up miracle children.
Nancy tumbled once, but now she’s back. The things she’s experienced… they change a person. The children under Miss West’s care understand all too well. And each of them is seeking a way back to their own fantasy world.
But Nancy’s arrival marks a change at the Home. There’s a darkness just around each corner, and when tragedy strikes, it’s up to Nancy and her new-found schoolmates to get to the heart of the matter.
No matter the cost.
2: Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo
Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo is the second book in the YA Fantasy duology “Six of Crows” which I’m pretty sure most people have heard about. I read both books in 2017 and loved them both a lot, but I decided to put this one on the list for no particular reason. The plot and characters were interesting as well as the world and I hope Leigh Bardugo writes more like this in the future. The summary below is for Six of Crows, the first book in the duology.
Criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker has been offered wealth beyond his wildest dreams. But to claim it, he’ll have to pull off a seemingly impossible heist:
- Break into the notorious Ice Court
(a military stronghold that has never been breached)
- Retrieve a hostage
(who could unleash magical havoc on the world)
- Survive long enough to collect his reward
(and spend it)
Kaz needs a crew desperate enough to take on this suicide mission and dangerous enough to get the job done – and he knows exactly who: six of the deadliest outcasts the city has to offer. Together, they just might be unstoppable – if they don’t kill each other first.
1: A List of Cages by Robin Roe
I don’t really know what to say about A List of Cages by Robin Roe except that I loved it and it made me cry A LOT.
When Adam Blake lands the best elective ever in his senior year, serving as an aide to the school psychologist, he thinks he’s got it made. Sure, it means a lot of sitting around, which isn’t easy for a guy with ADHD, but he can’t complain, since he gets to spend the period texting all his friends. Then the doctor asks him to track down the troubled freshman who keeps dodging her, and Adam discovers that the boy is Julian—the foster brother he hasn’t seen in five years.
Adam is ecstatic to be reunited. At first, Julian seems like the boy he once knew. He’s still kindhearted. He still writes stories and loves picture books meant for little kids. But as they spend more time together, Adam realizes that Julian is keeping secrets, like where he hides during the middle of the day, and what’s really going on inside his house. Adam is determined to help him, but his involvement could cost both boys their lives…
So those were my favourite books of 2017! Sorry it has been taking me so long to post my end of year/beginning of year posts, I don’t really have an excuse. I have two award posts to do which require a lot less writing so they should be up quickly and then I can talk about my plans for this year! Happy reading, Keira x.