Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. This week’s theme is:
February 11: Love Freebie
For this week’s theme, I’m sharing some of the books that I absolutely love, but don’t talk about enough on my blog. An ode to my favourites, if you will.
I read Graceling back in 2014 and it instantly became one of my all-time favourite fantasies.
I powered through 80% of it sitting in an airport, waiting for a flight to visit my friend, and I couldn’t get over how good the characterisation and magic were.
This book was so powerful, poignant, and moving, that I still think about it three years after reading.
The author explores the human psyche and discusses how interconnected our lives are, while commenting on and critiquing communist China throughout history.
The characters feel so many raw, intense emotions and we, by extension (and good writing), feel them too, so it’s hard not to be touched by this book. I certainly was.
I read The Alchemist in about four hours while on holiday one year and I loved it.
The philosophy and spirituality that Paulo Coelho embedds in every chapter feels so uplifting.
I’d never read anything like this at the time and it reminded me that we should always strive to see the best in people wherever we can.
Every time I think about this book, I remember how much it absolutely SLAPPED. It’s brilliantly conceptualised and the characters are fun and likeable.
There’s a twist part way through that I wasn’t sure on when I first read it, but looking back, it’s actually pretty brilliant??
I picked this book up on a whim at YALC and I’m so glad I did. The Arsonist is such a clever historical mystery, that unspools with perfect pacing just the right amount of drama.
I feel like I never see people talking about how great this book is so I’m here to say, friends, if you like mystery, treat yo’self to a copy of this book.
I could have put both Strange and Muse on this list because they’re both incredibly well written books and favourites of mine.
But I felt Strange was a little slow to start and Muse had more LGBTQIA+ content, brought all the threads of the plot together, resolved mysteries, and wrapped up the duology very well so I decided to go for it instead.
I feel like I used to talk about Six of Crows all the time on my blog and for some (truly bizarre) reason, I haven’t done so as much in the last year?
Well 2020 is the year we bring back Kate the SOC stan because I absolutely LOVE THIS BOOK. When I read it, I literally couldn’t find a single flaw with the plot or world-building. The characters are phenomenal and I would have rated it six out of five stars if I could.
Just in case anyone needs a reminder, The Hate U Give is not only one of my all-time favourites, but one of the most powerful books I’ve ever read.
As a white person and someone living in the UK where gun ownership is predominantly illegal, this book was a huge eye opener. The reckless abuse of power by the police and their systemic victimisation of people of colour is something I now think about on a daily basis. We need more books like this in the world, to challenge abuses of power and racism.
If you want a book about books being forbidden, then this is your book.
Fahrenheit 451 is something of a modern classic, as well as being a dystopian tour-de-force about a world where literature and free thinking are taboo banned.
For it’s time, it was progressive, and even now, it’s still relevant and hits all the high notes of a good piece of sociopolitical criticism.
As far as short story collections go, this is still one of my favourites. It’s dark and, at times, gruesome and sinister, but oh so cleverly thought out.
What stands out to me about this collection is that every story is so individual. Some are very steampunk in nature, some seem fairy tale-inspired. But all are incredibly creative and unique.
Tell me a few of your favourite books? Are there any that you think are highly underrated?