Friday, June 30, 2017

TTT: Best Books of 2017 So Far

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly blog meme put on by The Broke and the Bookish
As my parents always say: Better late than never! A few days shy of Top Ten Tuesday, this was too fun of a list to miss out on. I didn't even realize how many great books I had read this year until I started sifting through my Goodreads! My goodness, how did I keep track of this treasure trove before Goodreads?

Nothing Left to Lose by Dan Wells
While this list is in no particular order, Nothing Left to Lose still comes out on top. The sixth and final (at least, so far) book in Wells' John Cleaver series, while not the best book in the series, still gets 5 stars from me and it wraps up the story in a fantastic and unexpected way. I love it.

Heartstone by Elle Katharine White
This was an unexpected read; I only found it while browsing Barnes & Noble with a friend a few months back. But White's vivid retelling of Pride & Prejudice as a fantasy novel deserves enough fanfare and praise to get its own display at aforementioned bookstore. Among other fantastic qualities, Darcy is a dragon rider. I repeat: DRAGON RIDER. White has recently been contracted to write two more books in the series, so there's plenty to look forward to.

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
It took me years to get to this book, but I really loved it. Maas has created a cruel fantasy world with great characters and some interesting uses of magic. I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the series.

84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff
My review
This book is amazing. While it consists of actual letters between American Helene Hanff and the employees of the British bookstore she insists on doing business with, it reads very much like a love letter to books that any reader can appreciate. The dry humor and witty banter between the writers is an added bonus, and written from post-WWII 1940s to the 1960s, it offers an interesting frontline view to the period.

The Blacklist: The Gambler by Nicole Phillips
My review
As a Blacklist fangirl AND a fairly picky reader, this one tickled me pink. Between great stories and spot on characterizations of their on-screen personas, this tie-in graphic novel did everything right.

Howl's Moving Castle by Dianna Wynne Jones
Yes, you may gasp in shock and dismay when you realize I had never read Howl's Moving Castle before. Heaven knows all my librarian friends did. And now that I've read it, I have to say they were in the right. This book is pretty spectacular. It's funny and clever and full of magic; it reminds me both of Lloyd Alexander's work and the delightful children's fantasies I loved growing up, like Half Magic by Edward Eager and Five Children and It by E. Nesbit.

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab
This is the second V.E. Schwab I've read and I've got to admit:
I'm kind of a fan. She has a way of working with magic that makes it interesting and a little on the dark side, but it's her characters that really take the cake.

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden
My review
A fantastic mesh of historical fiction, folk lore, and fantasy that brings old Russia to life. I love the clash here between the magic of the old country and the religion of the more 'modern' age, but you can read more about that in my review. Arden also has two more books in the works!

The W.H.O. Files: Potions in the Pizza by Mikey Brooks
My review
A fun and fantastic kids book with larger than life characters, delicious pizza, and witch hunters. What else does a book need?

Tricked by Jen Calonita
My review
While this series is for younger readers, I absolutely love it. It's a fun romp, with some really interesting tweaks to the lives of traditional fairy tale characters after their tales are done. I especially like that Calonita has pulled out a handful of the villains to create a reform school for misbehaving children.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars by various
I'm currently only halfway through this graphic novel series, and already it's a favorite. The prequel trilogy of Star Wars never dug into the specifics of the Clone Wars and more's the pity for it, because it really changes the way I view a lot of the characters and the events. It's also interesting to compare the differences between these graphic novels and the television show of the same name, because these do not tell the same stories at all.

And those are my best book of 2017 so far! What amazing titles have you read this year?

And how did you keep track of your books before Goodreads?
I remember using those handy reading logs during summer reading, but other than that, I really think I just relied on my memory. Oh to be young again...


  1. Ooh I love best of posts lol. Always fun to see what people are picking... and I love that cover of the Dan Wells book. A little rain, a little blood (?) - looks intense!

    Heartstone has me curious because dragon rider. It's amazing how varied the fantasy field is and yet how few books I've actually read with dragon riders, or even dragons for that matter! And I just finished Heir to the Empire (my first Zahn book), and while it's not Clone Wars it's me dipping my toe in the Star wars EU. :)

    1. Blood. Oh, it's definitely blood. This series is a little intense, but it's amazing. They all have gorgeous, minimalist covers too. <3

      Woohoo! First book in the EU! That's a celebratory mile marker right there!

      I'd be curious to know your thoughts on Heartstone; if you read it, be sure to share!

  2. Darker Shade is on my Must-Read list. I don't know why I haven't gotten to that series yet!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    1. I kept telling myself the same thing! I still have to read the other two, too. Gah! So many books!