What to read throughout 2019

I’m the kind of person that has a huge pile of books that she’s read, as well as an ever-growing pile of books to be read (TBR). The latter of the two piles never stops growing and hardly ever diminishes in numbers. However, this doesn’t stop me from getting more books.

I have always loved reading. As I’ve grown and filled out surveys or questionnaires where it asks what your hobby is, my answer has always been reading. Therefore, I’ve always felt a bit boring, especially when surrounded by people who never quite got swept up in the love of a good book.

As time went on I no longer cared what people thought about my favourite hobby. If anything I embraced it more. As happy as I am about that development, it didn’t help stop that pile of books from growing.

Since I live across the country from my parents and childhood home, most of my books reside in my multiple shelving units in California. However, in the past couple of years while I’ve lived in Ohio, I’ve started an entirely new pile of books to be read. It’s great, when I am here I can read from my TBR in Ohio pile and when I fly home, I have a completely new TBR pile to choose from. So many books, so little time.

So, my mission for 2019 is to read more of my TBR books because they’re just sitting together waiting for some affection. The goal is to slow down a bit in life and take a little bit of time each day to read, whether that be in between classes or before I go to sleep.

I’ve put some of these books down below, as a way to keep me accountable in my mission, as well as give some recommendations to anyone who wants them.

  1. “Luckiest Girl Alive” by Jessica Knoll

This novel is fast becoming one of my favourite books that keeps me wondering what is next. It’s one of those books that goes back and forth from past to present, following Ani FaNelli as she lives the life she created for herself after years of hardship and public humiliation. Her years of adolescence have followed her as she works her dream job in New York City with a gorgeous fiancé on her arm. Full of twists and turns, readers follow Ani as she navigates a path that could either save her from her own past or ruin everything she has worked for.

2. “A Discovery of Witches” by Deborah Harkness

The first book in the All Souls trilogy, “A Discovery of Witches” follows a historian and witch, albeit reluctant witch, who finds a bewitched manuscript in the Oxford library she works in. The book follows her as she works side-by-side with an elusive vampire, by the name of Matthew Clairmont, as they fight to protect the manuscript while dodging threats from various supernatural creatures around the world.

3. “The Couple Next Door” by Shari Lapena

This books delivers the classic edge-of-your-seat missing child scenario. Similar to Jessica Knoll’s character of Ani, Anne and Marco Conti seem to have everything. The perfect marriage, nice home, beautiful baby girl. Except there is more than meets the eye in this seemingly loving household. After tragedy strikes while the couple is at a dinner party next door, the secrets that start to unfold keep you guessing what could be next.

4. “The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon” by Stephen King

A friend of mine lent me this book because it’s one of her favourite novels that she reads every year. I love suspense, if you couldn’t tell from the books I’ve already listed, so this was totally up my alley. Stephen King has always been a fav, how could he not be? This book is unique in the way that it is narrated by a nine-year-old girl who is on a hike with her mother and brother. She strays away to go to the bathroom, thinking that she can easily find her way back to them. However, this leads into a psychological thriller that follows her as she remains lost for more than a week.

5. “The Sun and Her Flowers” by Rupi Kaur

This book of poetry follows the same structure of Kaur’s previous book, “Milk and Honey,” with each section of the book following a certain pattern. “The Sun and Her Flowers” is structured with the following chapter titles: Wilting, Falling, Rooting, Rising and Blooming. Each chapter has poetry that fits into the theme. Kaur focuses on topics such as relationships, heartbreak, equality and love, immigration and accepting yourself. The perfect thing to read if you’re feeling introspective for the day.

6. “Talking as Fast as I Can” by Lauren Graham

As a huge “Gilmore Girls” fan, this is something that needs to be on my list. I’ve had it for a while now but haven’t gotten around to reading it from beginning to end. Graham started writing it when the cast reunited to film “Gilmore Girls: A Day in the Life.” She chronicled her experience with filming, reflected on returned to a character she hadn’t portrayed for about a decade and shared some anecdotes from her childhood. It’s fun, it’s quirky – it’s like you’re talking to Lorelai herself.

7. “Becoming” by Michelle Obama

I randomly came across this book when I stopped into Barnes & Noble one day. I just went inside to waste time, had nothing in mind to buy, but ended up leaving with “Becoming.” I knew that Michelle Obama had been promoting her novel and had seen excerpts of it online, so I was intrigued. It’s interesting to read about how she grew up, where she came from versus what we see now with her being in the spotlight. Ultimately, I was curious to read about the former First Lady’s perspective on events that we were only aware of through news segments or press releases.

8. “One Day in December” by Josie Silver

Numbers eight through eleven are all books that I received from my Book of the Month subscription. “One Day in December” follows a character by the name of Laurie, who could usually be described as a pessimist about love – she’s convinced that love at first sight doesn’t exist. However, one day she’s sitting on the bus, locks eyes with a man outside, and everything she thought she knew about love at first sight is blown away. She never finds him, until a year later when she meets him formally at her friend Sarah’s party – as Sarah’s boyfriend. Stories of love, heartbreak and friendship follow the three as the book chronicles the next ten years of their lives.

9. “For Better and Worse” by Margot Hunt

As someone interested in law, this intrigued me since it revolves around a couple, Natalie and Will, who met and fell in love in law school. They apparently always joked about how they were the perfect couple and that because of their degrees, they could plan the perfect murder and get away with it. 15 years later, Natalie puts that to the test. She jumps to the defense of her son after finding out he’s a victim of assault, when he admits one night to her that his principal molested him. Much to Will’s surprise, the plot they made 15 years previously is put to the test.

10. “#fashionvictim” by Amina Akhtar

Anyone remember that 2011 thriller movie called “The Roommate” that was about this young quirky student named Sara that became her roommate Rebecca’s object of obsession. #fashionvictim could be described as a mix of “The Roommate” and “Luckiest Girl Alive. Character Anya has it all and is dominated the world of fashion. However, she is one step below her coworker Sarah, who was born into this world. Anya finds herself wanting to be best friends with Sarah, wanting to become her. But when they end up being pitted against each other for a new promotion, Anya wants Sarah gone.

11. “Cross Her Heart” by Sarah Pinborough

“Cross Her Heart” is about a mother who will do anything to protect her daughter. Lisa is a mom who has done her best to put her past behind her and build a life that she and her daughter Ava can be proud of – and one that they can hide behind. Lisa broke a promise years ago and it is coming back to bite her and her daughter, because someone is controlling the bad things that start to happen to them. Everything that Lisa built is at risk of being ruined as she struggles to figure out who she can trust with her past.

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