Saturday, December 26, 2015

The Year in Review- the Best Books I Read in 2015

I would say that 2015 was a very good year.  I read many great books this year, but the following are my favorites for the year.  They come in no particular order and they are all wonderful reads!

Product DetailsRobin Sloan, in this gorgeous work, talks about the right book at the right time.   This definiately was that book for me.  It has a colorful cast of characters, all richly developed and a delightful plot with a purpose.  I loved it.   If you haven't read it yet, it's fantastic and if you are doing the PopSugar Reading Challenge -  it does have a yellow cover.  :)

Product Details  Not just one of the best books this year, but one of my favorite books ever ( don't get excited, the list is long and distinguished).   Me Before You is a book that I put off reading forever.  It was recommended by friend and I should have read it immediately as this friend never steers me wrong.  I have since read EVERYTHING of Jojo Moyes and loved them all - but this one is my favorite.  If you haven't read it, stop what you are doing and read it NOW, before the movie comes out in 2016.

Product Details This was one of the best fantasy novels I have read in a long time.  It was sort of like The Selection meets the Hunger Games with a little Red Rising thrown in for good measure.  In spite of that though, the plot was original and the characters enchanting.   I simply adored Mare and have the sequel, The Glass Sword on automatic download on my Kindle.  Can't wait.

Product DetailsThis book was just plain FUN.  I couldn't put it down.  All the twists and turns keep you guessing throughout.  Plus,  I'm a Kindergarten teacher and I could definitely see the parents and some of the scenarios described.

Product DetailsI absolutely loved the first book in this series, Red Rising,  but as good as it is,  this book was ever better.  It packs a POWERFUL punch as a space odessy/ dystopian sci-fi.   I loved every second.  Darrow is a brilliant character with depth of emotion and the story line is complex and well thought out. This  probably was my favorite book all year because it's enjoyable, fast paced, but still complex and well developed.  The third installment comes out in February - I am counting the days!

Product Details  This book has all the feels.  It's about two young people, Violet and Finch, who met while they are both on the roof contemplatng suicide.   This book isn't about that though,  it's about the ups and downs of mental illness and what it really means to live your life.   It stays with you long after the story is done.  Sometimes when I have just finished a book, I can't remember the characters names but this time, Violent and Finch are still with me.   This book makes you think and changes attitudes.  It's a wonderful, wonderful book.

Product DetailsJessmyn Ward was a new author for me in 2015.  I read this one for the PopSugar Challange because it was an award winner.   This book really opens  the mind to experiences and different lifestyle choices.  I hate animal cruelty in all it's forms, but I could understand why some of the characters did what they do in the novel.  I think that it richly describes how poor people live in certain parts of the country and accurately describes one families experiences leading up to Hurricane Katrina.

Product DetailsWinner of the 2015 Pulitizer Prize for Fiction - this award was so well deserved. This book is fantastic.  It has lavish vocabulary with stunning descriptions of people, places and emotions.  I could taste the peaches the writing is THAT good.   It took me a little bit of time to get into the story but this one is well worth the effort.

Product DetailsI  LOVED this book. It's the story of  Zan, a chimpanzee who is adopted by a reseracher and his family and raised as a human.  The hypothesis of the research was the effort to teach chimpanzees American Sign Language in order to communicate.   The young boy in this family, Ben, is resentful of Zan and the attention he gets at first, but comes to truly view the chimp as his brother.  This is a story about love and what really makes a family.   I loved it so very much!

and last but never least.....

Product Detailsthe Pulitizer Prize for non fiction for 2015.  This book is fascinating - scary, but fascinating.  I loved the science and the detailed discussions especially in regard to the Rhinos and the Golden Panamanian Frogs.  I remember reading about the mass extinction of the frogs in the last 70's or early 80's in Ranger Rick magazine - true story.  At any rate, especially if you are a naysayer on Global Climate change - this book is for you.

Yes, 2015 was a great year and I am looking forward to 2016.   Happy Reading everyone!


  1. LOVE these end of the year summaries. I'm working on my 2015 list but it probably won't be until later this week or even NEXT week

  2. I've placed holds on some of these. Thanks for the recommendations.