Sunday, December 31, 2017

Top 5 Books I Read in 2017

The year of 2017 was a good reading year for me. I read a total of 62 books, and I had more four- and five-star reads than the previous year. On this last day of the year, I want to share my top five favorite books of 2017 with you.

1. The Light Between Oceans by M. L. Stedman
This was one of the most breathtaking books I've ever read. The story is about a lighthouse keeper and his wife who live alone on a small island, simply maintaining the lighthouse from day to day, when one day a boat washes ashore with a dead man and a live baby inside. Believing this baby's family is all dead, the couple decides to raise the baby as their own. It isn't until months later when they travel back to the mainland that they discover they may have been wrong, and there is a woman mourning the loss of her husband and baby at sea. Now faced with a difficult decision, the couple must decide whether to keep the secret safe they now harbor or to come forward with their crime. Stedman's writing in this novel is lyrical and elegant, and the story is truly spectacular. This book immediately became one of my favourites.

2. Love That Lasts by Gary and Joy Lundberg
This nonfiction handbook helps couples in all stages of marriage achieve a more fulfilling and intimate relationship with their partner. The book is full of anecdotes and tips from a variety of couples, and the stories really provide perspective into your own marital relationship. Although written by an LDS couple and directed primarily at LDS couples, this book will guide couples of all faiths toward a happier marriage. This book is very enjoyable and easy to read, and I see myself revisiting it year after year. To read my full review, click here.

3. The Dark Hills Divide (Land of Elyon series) by Patrick Carman
This series was one of my favourite trilogies when I was younger, back when it had only three books. Now a decade later, I reread the original books then finished the additional two, and I love the series more than ever. This is one of the most adventurous and exciting middle-grade fantasy stories out there (that I've read). We follow Alexa Daley on a journey across the land to discover hidden secrets and solve mysteries, all with the help of some forest animals that she can communicate with. This is one of those stories that did not lose its savor with age, and I would recommend it to readers of all ages. To read my full review of the first book, click here.

4. The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau
This is a steampunk post-apocalyptic young adult novel about a city that was built underground to withstand a massive war above ground. Over two centuries after its inception, the city is falling apart and the lights that keep the city alive are starting to flicker and go out. Lina and Doon are two kids that find some clues to a world beyond their crumbling city, and they are determined to discover what's out there. This novel is full of real problems that face the protagonists, which I loved to see in a kids' book. The underground setting it authentic and the writing is excellent. Again, I would recommend this book to all fantasy lovers. To read my full review, click here.

5. Reincarnation Blues by Michael Poore
I read an arc of this book earlier in the year, and I never expected an arc to become one of my favourite books of the year. This was a very original story that truly covers all genres of literature from science fiction to historical fiction to contemporary to fantasy. We see Milo, who has already lived 9,995 lives, trying to achieve perfection before his ten thousandth life. The reason this achievement is so hard for him is that Milo is in love with the persona of death, who he calls Suzie. We read through the last of Milo's lives as he struggles to truly reach perfection, making mistake after mistake along the way. This book was funny and sad and crude and thought-provoking, and I loved it all, even the hard-to-read parts. To read my full review of this novel, click here.

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