My 2019 in Reading

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I read 118 books this year, mostly thanks to an aggressive ARC schedule and audiobooks. The list here are 19 books which I read this year that I loved, but weren’t necessarily published in 2019.

Top 2019 Favorite Reads

The books are in alphabetical order. Any book marked with an * means that it was featured in the 2019 Bookish Hype Train Post.

  1. Blood, Water, Paint by Joy McCullough (2018)
    • First novel in verse I have read and this imagining of the life of Artemisia Gentileschi took my breath away.
  2. Destroy All Monsters by Sam J. Miller (2019)*
    • Another fantastic exploration of mental illness through science fiction, this time with more dinosaurs.
  3. Docile by K.M. Szpara (2020)
    • This sexy and disturbing examination of consent and power opened my eyes to how interiority is supposed to work.
  4. The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis (2016)
    • Hell hath no fury like a woman on a revenge streak and my God, was this book unflinching in its take down of rape culture.
  5. Grave Mercy and Dark Triumph by Robin LaFevers
    • Murder nuns in an alternate version of medieval France. Exciting and I love ever single protagonist.
  6. Heroine by Mindy McGinnis (2019)
    • The most compassionate and empathetic book with a character suffering from opioid addiction I have read in a while.
  7. In the Dream House by Carmen Maria Machado (2019)
    • Horror and literature serve as the vehicle for this heart-breaking memoir about domestic abuse.
  8. The Lesson by Cadwell Turnbull (2019)
    • First contact and an examination of colonialism through the eyes of lads who wanted to meet aliens.
  9. The Luminous Dead by Caitlin Starling (2019)
    • Claustrophobic and absolutely terrifying, especially in audiobook. Congratulations to messy lesbians.
  10. Magic for Liars by Sarah Gailey (2019)*
    • A murder mystery taking place in a magical school that’s more like everyone’s mediocre high school. Sisterhood and feels abound.
  11. Moby Dick by Herman Melville (1851)
    • Transcendent and a classic. It goes to show how inaccurate you can be while still telling a compelling story.
  12. The Raven Tower by Ann Leckie (2019)
    • This book blew my mind both as a Hamlet retelling and an expert use of second person narration.
  13. Sadie by Courtney Summers (2018)
    • A must-read for fans of true crime, podcasts, and young adult thrillers.
  14. Sawkill Girls by Claire Legrand (2018)
    • The mean girl trope turned on its head as something sinister takes down random girls on the island.
  15. The Shadow Glass (Bone Witch #3) by Rin Chupeco (2019)
    • A perfect ending to a trilogy in which a young woman raised her brother from the dead and wants to stop the terror coming in the her future.
  16. This is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone (2019)
    • Epistolary and clever, enemies to lovers in such a classy package.
  17. Timekeeper Trilogy by Tara Sim (2016-2018)
    • Whimsical, tugs at the heart strings, and everything I could have wanted in a steampunk adventure.
  18. Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky by Kwame Mbalia (2019)
    • Enthralling and full of magic, folklore, and heart.
  19. Voices of Chernobyl by Svetlana Alexievich (1996)
    • An oral history of the nuclear disaster full of heart-wrenching recollections and harsh truths.

Some Numbers (Base = 118)

I didn’t meticulously keep up a spreadsheet just to NOT break down my reading habits.

Age Group Percent of Total
Adult 49%
Young Adult 36%
Middle Grade 3%
Non-Fiction 6%
Manga 7%
Format Percent ARCs Percent Total
Audiobook 0% 50%
Kindle 65% 36%
Physical Copy 63% 14%

What are some of your favorite reads? Tell me about your year in reading.

Happy reading,
Jo

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