Top Ten Tuesday: BOTM 2019 Review!

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. Check out her blog for more info!

Happy Tuesday, friends! This week’s prompt was a book cover freebie…but I’m changing it up a little bit.

In 2019, I made one of my goals to read a BOTM book each month, and I was SO CLOSE. I ended up reading 11 out of 12. I figured I’d use this TTT freebie to review the ones I read! This is a goal I’m continuing in 2020, so hopefully I can keep up the progress. My BOTM shelf is getting SO full… I need to actually read them as I buy them. Whoops. Here are the BOTM books I managed to read last year!

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The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Rating: 5 stars

 

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Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell

Rating: 3.5 stars

 

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Normal People by Sally Rooney

Rating: 2 stars

 

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Circe by Madeline Miller

Rating: 5 stars

 

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How To Walk Away by Katherine Center

Rating: 3 stars

 

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The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X R Pan

Rating: 5 stars

 

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The Whisper Man by Alex North

Rating: 3.5 stars

 

Get a Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert

Rating: 4 stars

 

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Daisy Jones and the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Rating: 4 stars

 

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One Day In December by Josie Silver

Rating: 4 stars

 

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Well Met by Jen DeLuca

Rating: 4 stars

 

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The Proposal by Jasmine Guillory

Rating: 4 stars

 

Ok apparently I can’t count, because that’s actually 12 books?? Success! Which BOTM books did you read last year? Which were your favorite? And which ones should I read in 2020??

xoxo

Jen

Top Ten Tuesday: Winter TBR

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. Check out her blog for more info!

Hard to believe we’re over halfway through January already. I’ve been having a ROUGH time with TBR’s in general, but there ARE some books that I’m wanting to get to over the next couple of months. Here they are!

Here are some ARCS that I need to get through sometime before the end of March:

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A Heart so Fierce and Broken by Brigid Kemmerer

Lady Hotspur by Tessa Gratton

Foul is Fair by Hannah Capin

Wicked As You Wish by Rin Chupeco

Beyond those, I definitely have some books I’m hoping to get to:

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The Wives by Tarryn Fisher

This is actually our book club pick for the month of February, so I’ll be getting to it fairly soon. I’ve heard mixed reviews, and also that the twist at the end is WILD, so I am itching to dive in.

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The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden

I’m currently reading this one! This was one of my 2019 backlist books and I didn’t get to it, so I started it as soon as January began. I’m really enjoying it so far!

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Heartstopper Vol 1 by Alice Oseman

I’m cheating – I already read this one. This was one of my 2020 backlist books, and I absolutely adored it.

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Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare

I’m wanting to do a reread of Lady Midnight and then get to Lord of Shadows before Cassy Clare’s new book is released in March, but we’ll see how that timeline plays out.

House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J Maas

I’ll be starting this book the day it’s released. The end.

Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

I managed to read the first two books in this series in 2019, but somehow fell off before picking up the last book. I’ve really enjoyed the series so far, and I’d like to finish it out!

Have you read any of these yet? What did you think?

xoxo

Jen

Top Ten Tuesday: Most Anticipated 2020 Releases (Jan – June)

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. Check out her blog for more info!

Wow ya’ll, it’s been a hot minute since I’ve done one of these, but I did want to go over some of my most anticipated 2020 releases, so it seemed like a good opportunity! I’ll be honest, I’m not even sure this is the right prompt…oh well. So, without further ado and in no particular order, here are some of my most anticipated 2020 releases for the first half of the year!

JAN 14 – Dark and Deepest Red by Anna-Marie McLemore

I have truly and deeply loved everything I’ve read by this author, and I will forever and always buy every single thing they publish. Blanca y Roja was one of my top publications of 2018.

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JAN 14 – Love Her or Lose Her by Tessa Bailey

I read Fix Her Up last summer and absolutely loved it. I can’t wait to read the next installment in this steamy series!

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FEB 6 – Heartstopper Vol 3 by Alice Oseman

I haven’t read Volume 2 yet, but I just finished Volume One this week and cannot WAIT to dive back into this world.

MARCH 3 – House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J Maas

Sarah J Maas. Need I say more?

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MARCH 3 – Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare

If you had told me a year ago that I’d have a Cassy Clare book on this list, I would have laughed out loud. And yet…

MARCH 3 – Wicked As You Wish by Rin Chupeco

Rin Chupeco is QUEEN. I loved The Bone Witch series, and her writing is so all consuming and gorgeous.

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APRIL 3 – Loveless by Alice Oseman

I’m definitely going to have to get the matching cover to the rest of my Alice Oseman collection.

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APRIL 21 – Girl Gone Viral by Alisha Rai

I read The Right Swipe with Dragons and Tea Bookclub last year, and it was so cute and such a fun storyline! I can’t wait for the next piece.

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APRIL 28 – He Started It by Samantha Downing

My Lovely Wife was such a unique and fresh take on a thriller – potentially one of my favorite of the year. I can’t wait to see what this author does next.

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MAY 12 – More Than Maybe by Erin Hahn

I read You’d Be Mine and absolutely fell in love with it. It has scenes in Michigan, which obviously grabs at my heart, and is one of the best Johnny and June – esque love stories. I am so excited for Hahn’s sophomore novel, which ALSO has Michigan locations!

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MAY 19 – The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins

Yeah yeah yeah, I’m a sucker. It made the list.

What are some of your most anticipated releases for the first half of the year?? Any I need to add to this list? Let me know!

xoxo

Jen

Top Ten Tuesday: Books with Numbers in the Title

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. Check out her blog for more info!

Happy Tuesday everybody! I missed last week’s topic, and I didn’t love this week’s a whole lot, so I decided to swap. This week the prompt is books with number in the title, so here are some ideas, in no particular order!

 

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Five Feet Apart by Rachael Lippincott

I read this earlier in the year, but I haven’t seen the movie yet. If you like books like The Fault in Our Stars, then this read is for you. Make sure you have kleenex on hand, though.

 

One for the Money by Janet Evanovich

If you like a little bit of flirty with a little bit of fun, then try this series. I only read about 3-4 of them (they seemed to get a little repetitive with time) but they were fun while they lasted.

 

One of Us Is Lying by Karen McManus

I listened to this on audio, and really enjoyed the full cast! I think she also came out with another book, but I haven’t read that one yet.

 

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The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

I read this in January and it is still in my top 5 reads of the year, so let that sink in. If you haven’t read this yet, read it immediately. It’s probably in my top 5 reads of all time.

 

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Six Goodbyes We Never Said by Candace Ganger

I just read this earlier this month and really enjoyed it! It takes some good hard looks at some really difficult situations, and what it’s like to navigate loss and grief as a kid with OCD and anxiety.

 

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Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

This was a no-brainer for this list. I love this world, and I loved this duology. I can’t wait to see the Grishaverse series on Netflix!

 

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

This is definitely a polarizing read and TV show, but I do think it makes some really good points about your actions having impact on those around you.

 

The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware

Ruth Ware is always a little hit or miss for me, but I did enjoy this one! There were some pretty spooky twists and turns, and it would definitely be a good read for the month of October!

Well, that’s it! Have you read any of these? Happy Tuesday, bookworms, and happy reading.

xoxo

Jen

Top Ten Tuesday: My Fall TBR

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. Check out her blog for more info!

Happy Tuesday friends! Hard to believe that yesterday was the FIRST DAY OF FALL here in the US – meaning it’s a perfect time to take a look at my fall TBR. I’ve been slacking a little bit this month on the blogging/instagramming/reading front, so hopefully a new season means new motivation in that department! So here’s a look at part of my fall TBR, in no particular order:

FRIDAYFRIGHTATHON

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My first four books come from FridayFrightAThon, and if you don’t know what that is, check out THIS POST right now! I can’t wait to kick this off with some of my greatest friends on the first Friday of October. JOIN US!

ONE: American Predator by Maureen Callahan

TWO: The Whisper Man by Alex North

THREE: The Escape Room by Megan Goldin

FOUR: The Cabin at the End of the World by Paul Tremblay

 

I also have some ARCs I really need to get to:

FIVE: The Grace Year by Kim Liggett

SIX: Into the Crooked Place by Alexandra Christo

SEVEN: Heart of the Moors by Holly Black

EIGHT: Coral by Sara Ella

 

And as for some mood reading, these are the two biggies I REALLY want to hit:

NINE: Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

TEN: The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab

 

And that’s it y’all! which of these books made your TBR?? Are you reading any of them with me?

xoxo

Jen

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I’m Avoiding

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. Check out her blog for more info!

Happy Tuesday everybody! This week’s topic is books on my TBR that I’m avoiding. Man…how long do you have? I have SO MANY books on my shelf that I haven’t read yet, that I’m avoiding for one reason or another. BIG YIKES. I’ll try to limit it to the biggest ones:

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King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo

I loved Six of Crows, so I was so thrilled when I heard about this installment coming out. However, the reviews since it was released have been…less than awesome. With so much excitement prior to release, needless to say that after hearing it fell flat, I’m a little nervous to read it.

 

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War Storm by Victoria Aveyard

Ok. I swore to myself that after investing so much time in reading this series, I’d follow through to the end. Let me be clear: I didn’t love this series. Mare drove me bonkers. I actually already own this book. But I’m avoiding it…because I don’t want to read about her again. Whoops.

 

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Muse of Nightmares by Laini Taylor

Ok I actually LOVED Strange the Dreamer and was so excited for the second book to come out. And everyone I’ve talked to has loved it. But I’m just nervous it won’t live up to the first one.

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

This is actually on my Backlist reads for 2019 list, so I HAVE to read it before the year is up. And I’ve heard such good things! But…it’s just so long!

 

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A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

I loved Vicious and Vengeful by V.E. Schwab, so I should be leaping at the opportunity to jump into another Schwab series. But that’s just it: if I love the first book, I’m committing to a 3 book long series – and that’s a lot of time that I’m not sure I have right now.

How about you? Which books on your TBR are you avoiding? Which of these should I STOP avoiding?

xoxo

Jen

Top Ten Tuesday: Books Out of My Comfort Zone

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. Check out her blog for more info!

Happy September everybody! (Wait…wait?) This week’s topic was books that I loved that were out of my comfort zone. Over the past year I’ve really been making an effort to step outside of my normal box. Here were my favorites:

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The Poppy War by R.F Kuang

While I read a lot of YA fantasy, adult fantasy is usually a little too dense and involved for me. But I absolutely LOVED this one, and also enjoyed the second installment The Dragon RepublicBut be warned – this series has every trigger warning in the book.

 

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Next Year In Havana by Chanel Cleeton

I do not read a lot of historical fiction. I never end up liking it as much as I thought I would. But this one really took me by surprise. I listened to it a lot on audio, and enjoyed the narrator. The writing was so transportive and I truly enjoyed learning more about Cuba’s history.

 

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Circe by Madeline Miller

Mythology isn’t an area that I dive into too often, but I absolutely loved this story of Circe by Madeline Miller. So much so that I ran out and bought her other book, Song of Achilles, and cannot wait to dive in.

 

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The Smell of Other People’s Houses by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock

This was honestly unlike anything I’ve ever read before, and wove the most beautiful tale of four different people who’s lives came together in the most unpredictable of ways. I cannot recommend this book enough.

 

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The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco

I haven’t read a lot of books about necromancers, but this one has definitely sold me on the topic. I will now always and forever buy anything that Rin Chupeco writes.

 

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If We Were Villains by M.L. Rio

This was one of our FridayFrightAThon reads last year, and I’d have to say it was everyone’s favorite. If you love shakespeare and murder mysteries, pick ups his book immediately.

 

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I’ll Be Gone in the Dark by Michelle McNamara

I’ve never read true crime before (I’m too much of a baby) but I loved this one. I couldn’t sleep for a couple weeks, but it was well worth it. This was another FFAT read, and because of how well-received it was, we’ll be choosing another true crime book for this year’s picks.

Have you read any of these? Do they seem a little out of the box for you? Take the plunge – you won’t regret it.

xoxo

Jen

Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Tropes

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. Check out her blog for more info!

Alright y’all, I haven’t done a TTT in almost a month, so I guess it’s about that time. I’ll take my pick of the August promps since I’ve ignored ALL of them. Whoops. I think I’ll go with last week’s: my favorite tropes. BUT at the end I’m going to throw in my least favorite, just for funnies. Here we go!

FAVORITE TROPES

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ENEMIES TO LOVERS

I feel like everybody loves this trope, and I am no exception. It doesn’t matter how many times I read an enemies-to-lovers story, I am a sucker for it every. single. time.

Examples: The Wedding PartyThe Unhoneymooners, Red White and Royal Blue

 

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BOARDING SCHOOLS/SUMMER CAMP

Decreased parental supervision and teenagers running wild? Sign me up. Ever since I got to return to Hogwarts every summer when a new Harry Potter book was released when I was young, I have been obsessed with these stories.

Examples: Say You Still Love Me, The Last Time I Lied, If We Were Villains

 

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GIRL ASSASSINS

Who doesn’t fall for this one? This is girl power to the extreme. I secretly wish I had every single one of these skills.

Examples: Throne of Glass series and a bunch of others that I can’t currently remember.

 

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FUNKY MEET-CUTES

I will never ever tire of these, and I have been lucky enough to read a LOT of them this year. The biggest question: do these ever even happen in real life? We’ll never know…

Examples: The FlatshareThe Kiss QuotientThe Wedding Date

LEAST FAVORITE

LOVE TRIANGLES

Ok, I know this is a tricky one, because some people really love it. But to me, nine times out of ten, this is not done well. And I really just end up hating the experience.

UNRELIABLE NARRATOR

BIGGEST PET PEEVE. Also because most of the time the unreliable narrator is a woman. This is so tired, and I’m so sick of reading it.

That’s it, everybody! What are some of your favorite tropes? Do you have any suggestions for me??

xoxo

Jen

Top Ten Tuesday: My Favorite Book Settings

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. Check out her blog for more info!

Happy Tuesday everybody! I can’t believe we’re nearing the end of July. Summer is flying by so fast! This week’s prompt is book settings I’d like to see more of. I definitely have a few favorites, and I’m such a sucker for ALL of them. Seriously, mention any of these settings and I’m pretty much guaranteed to buy your book.

SUMMER CAMP

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Guys, I am such a sucker for books set (at least partially) at summer camps. I just finished Say You Still Love Me last week (keep eyes open for a review later this week!) and it featured flashbacks to summer camp – I was LIVING FOR IT. Riley Sager’s book The Last Time I Lied also featured flashbacks to a summer camp. I NEED MORE SUMMER CAMPS.

 

BOARDING SCHOOLS

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Harry Potter, anybody? But not just that series. ANY boarding school stories. I love them. I feel like so many shenanigans happen when adults are not as present – stories spiral out of control so quickly. I guess I just live for chaos.

 

TROPICAL SETTINGS

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Maybe it’s just because it’s summer, or my brain is in total vacation mode, but I love books set in tropical places. It makes me want to travel and lay by a beach and explore! A perfect example is The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren. I absolutely adored this book, and honestly it made me want to visit Hawaii SO BAD.

 

FAERIE

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Is anybody surprised this made my list? Because I’m not. I LOVED The Cruel Prince and The Wicked King, and my obsession for Faerie after these books is real.

 

MICHIGAN

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I’ve said this time and time again, but I love my home state. It isn’t glamorous, but it’s home and it will always be home to me. I truly believe that it is one of the best places for me to live. I will always and forever buy any book set in the mitten state. Exhibit A: after reading You’d Be Mine by Erin Hahn, she has now sold me on every single book she will ever write. Hello, new auto-buy author.

And that’s it guys! Those are my favorite settings! Now tell me all of yours so I can become obsessed with some new ones!

xoxo

Jen

Top Ten Tuesday: Auto-buy Authors

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. Check out her blog for more info!

Happy Tuesday bookworms! This week’s prompt was auto-buy authors, and I’m super excited for it. I’ve also gained a few recently…what else is new? So here they are, in no particular order: the authors I’d buy anything they write, even if it’s just three lines written on a piece of toilet paper.

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ONE: Holly Black

I’m sure this queen is going to be on EVERYONE’S list but I don’t even care. After The Cruel Prince and The Wicked King, ‘auto-buy’ is a category well deserved for Holly Black.

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TWO: Erin Hahn

I know I’ve talked about this quite a bit, but I read You’d Be Mine by Erin Hahn and absolutely fell in love with it. This book was an adorable Johnny-and-June love story about two country singers on the road. PLUS the MC is from Michigan, and we get to travel back there for a while. I’m a sucker for anything in the mitten state, so Erin Hahn has me hooked for life.

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THREE: Leigh Bardugo

Again, another one I’m sure made EVERYONE’S list. But after Six of Crows, how could she not?

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FOUR: Taylor Jenkins Reid

TJR made my auto-buy list by a land slide after reading The Seven Husbands of Evelyn HugoI haven’t read anything else by her yet, but I do already have several books on my shelf, and I can’t wait to get to them.

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FIVE: Laini Taylor

Three words: Strange the Dreamer. The end.

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SIX: K. Ancrum

If you haven’t read The Wicker King or The Weight of The Stars yet, do it immediately, and then put K. Ancrum on your auto-buy list for life. Honestly, if this author wrote her name on the back of a napkin, I’d buy it. And she’d probably find some way to make me to cry my heart out over it, too.

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SEVEN: Shea Ernshaw

I read The Wicked Deep last October and honestly it was everything I ever wanted. It was beautifully written and unique and I can’t wait to see where Ernshaw goes from here.

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EIGHT: Tessa Gratton

Are you guys sick of me talking about Strange Grace yet? TOO BAD. My top publication of 2019, so obviously now anything Tessa Gratton puts on paper, I’m going to buy.

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NINE: Helen Hoang

Romance QUEEN. Plus so much rep. I loved her first two books, and I know she’s doing more based on other characters. BE STILL MY HEART.

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TEN: Anna-Marie McLemore

After Blanca y Roja, I honestly would buy this lady’s kindergarten fridge artwork. I’m not joking. It was that good.

Honorable Mentions:

I made an honorable mentions list because 1. I couldn’t decide and 2. I know a lot of these are FOR SURE going to be on people’s list so I just figured they were assumed…

  • Sarah J Maas
  • JK Rowling
  • Cassandra Claire
  • Tessa Bailey
  • Casey McQuiston

What about you guys? What authors make you spend all the money, no matter the cost?

xoxo

Jen