Thursday, January 7, 2016

My Favorite Reads of 2015

I failed drastically to get my book reviews over here during 2015. While I have the desire to catch up, giving myself a fresh start on reviews sounds much more appealing. I'll probably dole out ratings, and maybe some general thoughts over at Goodreads. That way I'll get a bit of both worlds!

I DO want to mention some of my favorite reads from 2015, because I read some awesome books last year, y'all. I read a huge amount of books. Many of them were in the history/biography/science realm. (Terrible Typhoid Mary was probably my favorite in that realm, though I greatly enjoyed Thunder & Lightning, minus the profanity) Many of them were with my children. (It seems mostly in the Magic Tree House Series, though tons of picture books were read.  James Herriot's Treasury for Children was among the most well loved.)  Many of them I hated. (Go Set a Watchman and Moone Boy, as only a couple examples, because there was lots in this category) Some of them I had great fun reading, and with tons in this category, too, these were my favorites: The Disappearance of Emily H., The Key to Extraordinary, Aspen Everlasting, Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer, The League of Beastly Dreadfuls, The Ark, The Girl Who Could Not Dream There were some I felt the need to tuck away for my children, because many of the books I read don't stay to take up room around here. (The Imaginary, Warren the 13th and The All-Seeing Eye) There were some that I wanted to discuss with others, and thought they'd make great book club picks. (The Nest, Undertow, Cruel Beauty)

Many of those I listed I even consider favorites, and I truly adored many of them. Other than the ones I hated, they're all worth reading, and I very much recommend them. (See, I told you I had an awesome year of reading!) There were still many, many reads that I didn't even list up there.


There were a few books that stood a bit above the rest, though. These are my top 5 reads of 2015, in no particular order, and I recommend them freely(one exception, which I explain below).

A Plague of Bogles by Catherine Jinks

Read this series in order! (How to Catch a Bogle, A Plague of Bogles, and The Last Bogler) While I read A Plague of Bogles in 2015, I have to mention the whole series. I absolutely love these books, and I'm currently finishing up the final book, The Last Bogler. I'm super excited to see how the whole series wraps up, but as always with a series that one loves, I'm sad there won't be more.


The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery

I seriously love this book! I want to just wrap it up in a hug. I plan on redoing my boys' room soon in somewhat of star/planet type theme(regular bedding, because I don't care for bedding themes unless a baby is involved...and there's not) ;) I'm excited to incorporate The Little Prince in there somehow, though.

*Try to read the translation by Katherine Woods, as opposed to the one by Richard Howard.

**When linking to this book, I discovered The Little Prince Coloring Book, and now there is great excitement. :D


The Riverman and The Whisper by Aaron Starmer

I read both of these last year, and I'm on pins and needles of anticipation waiting to get my hands on the last book, The Storyteller. I can't mention this book without saying that I can't in good conscience recommend the books to the targeted age. There's some mature content. BUT, if you're an adult that enjoys awesome middle grade books, or a mature reader, this series is up there as the cream of the crop! This is awesome writing!


The Glass Casket by McCormick Templeman

I still think this is one of the worst covers ever, but don't judge the story based on that. (That advice coming from the queen of judging books based on covers!) Sure, it's dark and a bit creepy at times, but it is fairy tale retelling at its best, in my opinion. As with most fairy tales, there's romance, but it's not gushy or overwhelming. Don't read it at night, but give it a try!


The Boys of Fire and Ash by Meaghan McIssaac

This one is a bit more on the science fiction kind of side, but it was different, and I loved it. It reminded me a bit of Indiana Jones and Peter Pan, both, but still completely unique.

With all of these authors, I am looking greatly forward to reading more from them.


Bonus Books:

As a bonus, I can't let this post get published without mentioning the Trim Healthy Mama Plan and the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook, which I refer to most everyday. Those books have truly been life-changing for me, and I'm totally smitten with the plan. God has blessed me with a great week of weight loss. Yesterday morning gave me a 3 pound drop, and that didn't seem realistic. With 2 mornings in a row, though, I'll make it official. 25 pounds gone, y'all! :D To God be the glory! Best of all, I'm eating healthy, and cooking almost everything I eat from scratch(dream come true). I don't usually feel deprived. When I do, I make a coffee cup cake that's on plan, and all is well. If you want to pray for me as I continue on this journey, I won't complain! ;)


What are some of your most favorite reads, 2015 or otherwise?


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