Books of 2019: 31-40
Checking back in with the latest 10 books I've read this year! And it's a great time to check in, because it's November. WHICH IS CRAZY. You guys, it's November! What is life. Thanksgiving and Christmas are right around the corner.
As always, let me know if you've read any of these books and what you thought of them! If you have book suggestions, pass those along too!
31. The Jedi Path, Published by Chronicle Books
This was such a nerdy read, you guys. You'd only want to go through it if you absolutely LOOOOOOVE Star Wars, like I do! I don't even know who actually wrote/designed/compiled the book. Just the company who published it. It's the handbook of the Jedi way of life, "annotated" by characters like Yoda, Dooku, Ashoka, Qui-Gon, and more. If you don't know who they are, don't even think about reading this!
The annotations make the book hilarious, and it was so worth it just to read those. So funny. Also, reading more about the Jedi was fascinating, seeing more of their culture and traditions. I'm not sure how much is accurate to where the franchise is now vs. the old stories (which I loved, btw). If you're a nerd, you'll enjoy this! 7/10 overall if you're into Star Wars.
32. The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery
Oh my goodness, did I fall in love with this book. I had no idea she'd written this! But it's an absolute favorite now. I'm definitely going to buy this one day. Her writing style is easy to fall into and I was immersed into the world of this story by the very first sentence. That doesn't happen to me often.
The story is classic and so well done. This book needs to live on my shelf and be read at least once a year. Truly, I love it. There's so much depth to be pulled from the characters and the story and I was so stinking impressed. It left me feeling warm and fuzzy and so contently happy. There were some predictable (but oh so enjoyable) moments, and I was pleased that there were a few things I didn't see coming as well. The moral compass in this book is so precious.
Overall, 9.5/10. Read it, you'll be glad you did.
33. The Selection by Kiera Cass
I've read this series before and chose this book as my vacation read because I knew it would be easy and fun. Super predictable storyline and characters, they're entertaining and it's a roll-your-eyes teenage sappy book.
I actually really like the way the author did this series. Sap and all. Plus, the cover is kind of to die for on its own, if nothing else. And there are lots of pretty dresses in the book. So I kind of love it.
Not my traditional book style, but it's always an enjoyable read and it's easy to get through quickly. I own the series, so I'd say I recommend them! Overall, 8/10 for this book.
34. 100 Days to Brave by Annie F. Downs
I'll always recommend this devotional book. Each day gives you a verse or two to meditate on, a short story from Annie's life with some encouragement in it, and a challenge at the end of it all. I highly recommend going through this with a buddy, too. It's motivating, doing it alongside someone. I did it with a girl I mentor; we finished on time, on day 100!
I want to go through it again early next year. It's beautifully written and I saw so much of the Lord in the everyday by reading this book. I was encouraged, strengthened, and challenged--which doesn't happen often but I'm always craving. We need to be challenged in our lives! Overall, I highly recommend this book. Let's go through it together sometime! Definitely 10/10.
35. The Elite by Kiera Cass
The sequel to The Selection. I read through this one really quickly, because it's my first go through and they're (as I mentioned above) easy reads. It was still entertaining, though it got a little more tiresome than the first book. That usually happens in YA books, for me.
But even this time, even though I know how it all ends, I was still invested enough to be frustrated or happy with the characters when plans were foiled or they succeeded in something. So that's always a good sign of a sequel!
As with the first book, beautiful dresses. Catty girls, too. And some roll-your-eyes moments. Overall, 7.5/10.
36. The One by Kiera Cass
The final installment of this series.Out of all three books, I'd actually say this one is my least favorite. Some aspects of the sappy romance became way too predictable, even for the genre, but I knew I signed up for it so I'm not surprised!
I enjoyed the ending, which was a given because in these types of books the girl always gets the guy. It's the one thing I never have to wonder about, even when the authors try to surprise me. But it was rough getting to the ending, and I have some questions about other plot points I wish were answered. Sill, as the others were, it was a fun read. And I'll probably read again sometime. 7/10.
37. Winter by Marissa Meyer
If you've been reading my previous reviews this year, you know this is the 4th book in a series I half like, half don't! I enjoyed the world building in this book, some new characters were nice, and I liked a few twists we got near the end of the book. But geez, books about 16-19 year old girls saving planets are full of drama. Especially because they've all got boyfriends (obvi).
And there was a lot of eye-rolling drama in this series! Not in an endearing or entertaining way. Every book had more of that in it than the last.
This book did have more fun nods to the fairytales than the previous one, though, which I really liked. I'm glad I stuck with the series, and they're a fun read if you like this genre! Overall, 6.5/10.
38. Poems by C.S. Lewis
I actually read this as my 40th book of the year, but I messed up the number of the books I'd read and somehow left out 38 so...I'm calling it 38 to get myself back on track. Lol. Whatever.
I told myself I wanted to read more poetry this year, and this book definitely helped me fill that box. Some of them were a little too cerebral for me, though. His writing can be a little thick at times, much as I love him, especially when it's not a children's book.
Lewis is fantastic though, and even though it took me a while to read through, I am glad that I picked up this book. I bought it and I'm not sure if I would've in hindsight, but it wasn't available anywhere else and I did want to read all his poems. So I'm not mad I purchased it! Overall, 7.5/10.
39. Remember God by Annie F. Downs
I've been a fan of Annie and her beautiful words since high school, when my then-mentor and I went through Let's All Be Brave. This is the third book of hers I've read (4th if you count 100 Days To Brave!) and as usual, I got a lot out of it.
It wasn't as life-impacting as the first two I read, I'll admit, but I definitely will read it again and would recommend it if you like Christian non-fiction. It's cool, because this book written in the midst of her hurting. She's not even on the other side of these struggles yet, so the book doesn't have a "happy ending."
And you know what, I love that. I appreciate how honest and raw it is. She's also hilarious so I love the tone she brings into each story. I love all the stories she tells in general. And she just seems like we'd be friends. I'd recommend it! Overall, 7.5/10.
40. Love Lives Here by Maria Goff
I enjoyed a portion of the writing, but the style got a little bit old after a while. The formula to many books in this genre (also Christian non-fiction) is to tell an exciting story, then spend the rest of a chapter explaining how it applies to everything in life in a big, overarching way. Over and over again. And for me, the way she wrote this book, it became a little too repetitive.
I enjoyed the stories, but I found I didn't need the explanations and life applications because I can figure out that part on my own! I often had my own thoughts running around before she even finished the story, and I found it more useful to just read the story, pause and think about it, then skip the rest of the chapter. Just a little boring, I guess, even though a few parts did hit me and I appreciated them. I wouldn't necessarily pick it up again, but I'm glad I did read through this time. Overall, 6.5/10.
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So, I have 10 books left in 8ish weeks.
It'll be a hard task, especially because this is National Novel Writing Month so in addition to working, I'll be trying to write 50,000 words.
But I'm in the middle of several books already, so if I can get those done with a few extras, I'll hit my 50 book goal with maybe one day to spare this year. Haha.
Wish me luck!