Happy New Year everyone! I’m finally back and ready to read more, write more, talk more, and enjoy myself more. I stopped blogging in October as I just felt like I put too much pressure on myself to keep up with a strict blogging schedule, making sure I write something about every book I read, and so on, which just made me not enjoy reading or blogging as much as I did when I started.
So I decided to take a step back, reevaluate, and come back with more passion, less rules, and more books (hopefully haha). I wanted to start this year off with a little reflection of what I read, which books I enjoyed, and which ones just didn’t hit the mark for me.
Goodreads Reading Challenge 2019
I started 2019 thinking I could tackle 100 books in a year and boy was I wrong… Sometime in the second half of the year I realised how impossible this was and reduced my goal to 50. Unfortunately, I fell one book short of reaching this. But I’m still happy that I managed to read 49 books throughout this busy year.
The Best of 2019
I enjoyed quite a few books this year, but not as many as in 2018. That was a great year for reading top quality material haha. The top three last year, in no particular order, were:
“The Starless Sea” by Erin Morgenstern
Genre: Fantasy / Fiction
Number of Pages: 512
I don’t know where to begin or how to describe this book to do it justice. It’s one of those kind of reads where the story sucks you in straight from the first page, and the magic of it overtakes your days. The narrative is gripping, the writing is beautiful, and the magic is seeping through the pages. What more could you want from a book?
“Dark Age” by Pierce Brown
Number of Pages: 757
Pierce Brown has done it again! It’s the fifth book in his Red Rising series and they just keep on getting better, more intense, gripping, and brutal. If you haven’t come across his Red Rising series, please do read the first book and see what you think. His world building and character development is intricate, consistent, and truly immersive. Whenever I put the book down it was hard to realign myself with the real world.
“Nothing to Envy” by Barbara Demick
Number of Pages: 338
This is one of those kind of books that will change how you view some aspects of the world. If you don’t know anything or much about North Korea, its people and their lives, I urge you to read this. It’s an eye-opening account from six different people and their struggle in this repressive totalitarian regime.
The Worst of 2019
I came across quite a few books that just didn’t work for me, even though they’re quite mainstream and popular. I think the more I read, the pickier I get! Here are the three books I did not enjoy last year and wouldn’t recommend reading:
“The Keeper of Lost Things” by Ruth Hogan
Genre: Fiction / Contemporary
Number of Pages: 336
There were so many times when I was about to abandon this book, but I feel guilty when I don’t finish reading what I started. But that definitely was not time well spent. Mediocre story, flat characters, and unbelievable scenes (even for a fiction book). Such a bland book. It’s marketed as one of those “feel-good” stories, but even most of them are written better and with less boring dialogue.
“Normal People” by Sally Rooney
Genre: Fiction / Contemporary
Number of Pages: 269
This book has received numerous awards, but I personally really struggle to see why. In all honesty, I can barely remember the story because it was so unremarkable. The only thing that’s still ingrained in my mind were all those cringey sex scenes and connotations towards sex. It really felt like the author needed to get laid or had nothing more important/reasonable to say. Also, all the men in the book seem to fit the stereotypical notion that they always think of sex, because that’s what it seems to be all the time.
“Ever Alice” by H. J. Ramsay
Genre: Fantasy / Retelling
Number of Pages: 347
Another book that I had to force myself to finish reading. It was my first eARC (advanced reading copy), so I think that was the only reason why I persevered. Bland writing, fairly repetitive, and slow going. The book was full of one-dimensional characters that I didn’t connect to at all.
So there you have it, my best and worst from 2019! You can find the full list of books I’ve read last year in my “Year in Books” from Goodreads here.
What were some of your best and worst books from 2019? Let me know in the comments!