Top Ten Tuesday [16]: New on My Shelves

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I’m glad I decided to check out the prompt for this week’s Top Ten Tuesday. I was about to draft my latest Hoarders post only to realize I can kill two birds in one stone. So the prompt is about top ten books you’ve recently added to your TBR and since I’ve not done a Hoarders post in the last couple of weeks, I thought I might as well.

The Burning World by Isaac Marion

This is the sequel to Warm Bodies. I don’t know if y’all remember the most sentient zombie in the history of zombies, but R was one of a kind. I thought Warm Bodies was really good so when Simon & Schuster emailed me about this book, I agreed gleefully. Release date: February 2017

The Rain by Gregg Hurwitz

This has an interesting premise that has me thinking of that movie, Purge with rabid adults terrorizing the young uns. I knew I had to read it.

The Killer Within [Killer Instinct, #2] by S.E. Green

Truth be told, I didn’t quite enjoy Killer Instinct but since the sequel was on sale, I figure I might as well see if there was any improvement. Let’s hope.

A Barricade in Hell [Delia Martin, #2] by Jaime Lee Moyer

I haven’t read the first book to this series, but I found this on the sale shelves of my bookstore. I don’t know much about this book. I know there’s a girl who has the ability to see ghosts or the afterlife and that it’s set in the 1900s. I just like seeing a completed series on my bookshelves, that’s all. Lol.

Still Life With Tornado by A.S. King

Is it bad that I haven’t read a single book by A.S. King? Well, I now own three of her books. I need to stop buying them and letting them sit on my shelves unread. #bookhoarderproblems

Frost by M.P. Kozlowsky

This book is giving me a Cinder vibe with a mix of Rapunzel so of course, I had to get it.

Diplomatic Immunity by Brodi Ashton

This book hasn’t been getting OMG-THIS-BOOK-IS-AMAZEBALLS reviews but I’ve always been fascinated with the life of a diplomat so I knew I want to read this.

The Fixes by Owen Matthews

This is an LGBTQIA book that I’ve recently found when I followed Steve Donoghue on YouTube. He’s unintentionally funny and brilliant at the same time. He’s not your typical book tuber for sure but he reviews non fiction usually about history. I don’t know why I’m so fascinated by him. Anyway, he gets an eclectic mix of books for review from a lot of publishers but he rarely gets YA. It’s almost incongrous when he does.

Gemina by Amy Kauffman & Jay Kristoff

I haven’t read Illuminae (I know, I know!).

Missing You by Harlan Coben

I’ve always wanted to read his books so when I saw this on the sale shelf, I wanted to grab the chance.

So there you have it. All new books on my shelves that I’ve picked up in the last couple of weeks.

What’s in your list this week?

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Top Ten Tuesday [15]: Unfinished Business

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Today’s TTT prompt is about completed series that I’ve yet to finish. God knows, this is just the tip of the iceberg for me. Honestly, I chose these because they are the ones that were within reach at the time of this writing. I have read most of this series starters a long time ago that I’ve forgotten what they were about. There are a multitude of reasons why I haven’t picked them up. But mostly, I simply have lost interest.  For more explanation as to why I haven’t finished these, read below.


ashen winter by Mike Mullin

This series was completed April, 2014. I loved the first book, Ashfall. The reason why I haven’t had the appetite to complete these (even though I own all three books) is because I’m terrified. The author has a way of ripping his readers’ hearts into shreds by putting the characters through the worst possible scenarios you can imagine. I sill want to read them though.

rephaim series by paula weston

This series is technically not competed yet. But you can order the last book (Burn) from The Book Depository. I didn’t want to read the third book until I have the last book in my hands. So this one will probably be completed soon.

the game by eve silver

I’ve had such a polarizing reaction to these books that I’m honestly not looking forward to completing it. Which is stupid because I bought the third book. Gah.

the wolves of mercy falls by maggie stiefvater

Another one of those scary endings. I really should read it soon so I can read Cole’s story. Plus, Ms. Maggie’s writing is divine.

divergent by veronica roth

Nope. No chance I’m ever going to finish this series. Pass.

darkness rising by kelley armstrong

I adore Kelley. I’m not fully writing off this series, but let’s just say I’m biding my time. The Gathering has echoes of her Darkest Powers series, so I was a little skeptical after finishing the first book.

paranormalcy by kiersten white

I don’t remember the story line, to be honest. I think I managed to acquire the second and third book, but perhaps a re-read will be in order.

his fair assassin by robin lefevers

I only need to read the third book. Frankly, the second book exhausted me so that I couldn’t find the motivation to read the third book. I’m still interested though.

penryn and the end of days by susan ee

The honest truth? I got tired of waiting. But if you say the books were worth the wait, then I’ll take your word for it.

benny immura by jonathan maberry

I haven’t even read the first book. Someday, someday.

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Top Ten Tuesday [#13]: 2014 Misses

FullSizeRender-7 I was kicking myself when I missed last week’s prompt. Because  as much as I’ve read almost a couple of hundred books last year, there simply wasn’t enough time to get through what TBR pile I’ve amassed throughout 2014.

I’m so glad that this week is a freebie, because then I have a chance to create a list that have been featured in the past. In this case, the immediate past.  So I thought I’d go ahead and showcase the books published last year that I didn’t get to read that I wanted to so badly.


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invisible by james patterson 

On the heels of my Sandra Brown reading romp last year, I realized that there’s a lot to be had in the suspense aisle of my bookstore. James Patterson has written 28,498,308,043 books (give or take). I didn’t want to jump into his popular Alex Cross series, because I only have time for stand alone nowadays. Invisible seem like the perfect diving board into the world of James Patterson.

the heiresses by sara shepard

I went to New York City last spring. For about a couple of weeks, I missed its hustle and bustle. The Heiresses, as the title indicates, is about the daughters of the privileged Saybrooks: diamond empire, with a family secret to boot, and yeah, they rule NYC.

red rising by pierce brown

Am I the only one who hasn’t read this one yet? In my defence, this sounds like a Science Fiction novel. IT IS a Science Fiction novel. I’m wary, but after all the glowing reviews for this series, there is no question that I need to read this one, stat.

the seeker by r.b. chesterton

By show of hands, how many of y’all are familiar with Henry David Thoreau? No? Well, me either. That is what grabbed me when I first laid eyes on this book. Once in a while, I do like to read about things or people that I don’t know. While this one is probably a fictional take on Thoreau’s life, it’s at least a step in the right direction.

while beauty slept by elizabeth Blackwell

All you really need to know is that this is a twist to Sleeping Beauty.

the girl who saved the king of sweden by jonas jonasson

This sounds like a barrel of fun; complete with a missing missile. Someone at the bookstore practically shoved this book to my face, but I haven’t had the opportunity to crack open its spine. Hopefully this year.

the silent history by eli horowitz

World War Z meets The Children of Men? How could I have not read this as soon as I got home from the bookstore? This sounds like the perfect horror read.

hrc: state secrets and the rebirth of hillary clinton by jonathan allen

HILLARY RODHAM MOTHERFUCKING CLINTON. That’s all. #Whitehouseorbust

don’t touch by rachel m. wilson

This book has connotations of a supernatural in nature. But I was surprised to find out that it’s about someone with a debilitating disorder. I wanted to read it because I thought it would be an interesting read.

sea of shadows by kelley Armstrong

I wasn’t too keen on reading books about dragons, no matter how kick ass they may sound. I am however, a fan of Kelley Armstrong. It sucks that I didn’t get to this last year.

What’s your freebie list today?

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Top Ten Tuesday [12]: Best Discoveries of 2014

FullSizeRender-7 Hello there.

For today’s prompt, I’m listing the top ten authors that have made quite an impression on me. These authors may have been veterans, but it was my first time reading their work.

I have to say that I had a tough time composing this list. Since this year, I’ve started to slowly veer away from my preferred genre. Because of that, I’ve discovered quite a few authors. These ten authors, however, truly made a significant impact on me.


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1.      Anthony Doerr.  It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Anthony was my first choice. Perhaps it’s because I just recently read his work, which I loved with all my heart. But this man is something else. His work was out of this world.

Stand outside for a minute. Be very still. Now, imagine the sound waves and lightwaves that carry messages from one end of the world to another. These messages are invisible to the eye, and yet they’re out there. Imagine something so precious like that. That’s what his book was about. Everyone is interconnected, one way or another. And the messages that don’t see carry so much weight and importance that it’s surreal the way he describes everything.

2.     Marisha Pessl.  By contrast, my introduction to Marisha Pessl’s work was as dark as All the Light We Cannot See is hopeful. This woman is brilliant. She created a novel whose primary  focus was on characters that readers will never truly know. Marisha is an award-winning, best-selling author. And yet, I’ve never heard of her before I serendipitously decided to read Night Film in time for Halloween.

3.     Sarah Waters.  Sarah has been writing for years. With five books under her belt – most of which – have garnered awards, her most recent work, The Paying Guests was my first. While it is true, that I didn’t quite enjoy this as I’d hoped, it at least made me curious about the rest of her work.

4.     Kate Atkinson. The mind of this woman must be a maze only a few can master.  She’s written several books, and much like the first three authors on this list, she’s also an award winning writer. By stroke of luck, Life After Life landed on my lap when I saw it at the second hand bookstore that I visited one weekend. I wasn’t prepared for the brilliantly complex structure of this novel. Needless to say, Life After Life made a Kate Atkinson fan out of me.

5.     Guillermo del Toro is, first and foremost, a film maker. So when I saw clips of his new tv series, I knew it was going to be great. The book was better than the adaptation, of course. And while I have yet to read the consequent books after The Strain, it made me realize how visceral del Toro is – in film, and in words.

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6.     Brandon Sanderson is a widely known fantasy author with a cult following. I’ve always been intimidated of his hefty books. This year, I decided to dip my foot in his world. While Steelheart is in no way near close to his other work,  I thought it was a good introduction, nonetheless. Unless you’re into high fantasy novels, Sanderson is the kind of writer you have to ease yourself into.

7.     James Patterson is another author  who’s written a million books. This year, I discovered his Confessions series via a free download of the audio book.  I’ve always been a tentative reader of suspense books, but this series lived up to everything I’ve heard about him.

8.      M.D. Waters. How much do I love this author and her work? I never thought I could enjoy Sci-Fi, but Misti changed my mind pretty quickly.  If you haven’t read her books, you are missing out. She is such a phenomenal story teller.

9.     Yōko Ogawa. This year, I discovered this Japanese literary powerhouse from a recommendation by a relative. She’s written so many award-winning pieces as well, but if you do decide to check her out, you need to start with Hotel Iris. Sensual, dark, and disturbing are just a few words that I could say to describe her world.

10.     Anne Bishop. I’m not a paranormal reader. I’ve had my share of werewolves, vampires, and whatever creature of the night roam the pages of those books. But since The Others comes highly recommended by a lot of trusted book buddies, I decided to give a try.  I’m so glad I did. I’ve become a fan  of this author because of her series.

What’s on your list today?

 


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Top Ten Tuesday [#11]: I Just Can’t Get Enough

photo-7I found this week’s prompt to be somewhat difficult. I could think of at least thirty books I want to re-read for a variety of reasons. I stood in front of my bookshelves, started pulling books and see which books called out to me the loudest. These ten books were the one I came up with. I must admit that if didn’t have to think too much about it, all of Melina Marchetta’s books would’ve made this list. Instead, I picked a couple of books that I haven’t re-read in the past.

Anyway, in a perfect world – a world where my TBR pile consists of only two books – these are the books I want to re-read.


 

 

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In no particular order:

1. I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson. In true Jandy Nelson fashion, she crafted a story about the importance of one’s sibling’s past with the other’s present. If they ever have any hopes of a future free of heartaches and grief, they have to come to terms with their transgressions and misgivings of the past. Jandy Nelson is a brilliant writer who is so adept in writing the most heartfelt, realistic stories of love and family. I want to re-read it because her writing is an experience it itself.

2. Lover Awakened [BDB, #3] by JR Ward. This is my favourite amongst the BDB novels. I have a thing for the broken anti-hero who thinks he’s unworthy of anything beautiful in the world. And what’s more beautiful than the love a woman who saw past his scars and torments? I love this couple. I want to re-read it because I feel like this book exemplifies exactly why I love this series so much.

3. Night Film by Marisha Pessl. This is a recent read. I was not able to give this book its due, because it was simply impossible. I just want to experience the brilliance that was this book all over again. It was truly a thrilling, mesmerizing read. One that I’d hope you will give a chance some time down the road. The multi-media used, though something that’s been done before, is an added bonus.

4. The Piper’s Son by Melina Marchetta. Speaking of perfectly flawed characters, Tom McKee is one that incites that protective animal instinct. You know, where you want to gather him up in your arms and just…hold him. I want to re-read this because I could barely express why I loved every page of this book when I read it.

5. Saving Francesca by Melina Marchetta.  I re-read my measly review for this book, and I mentioned how it was the sole reason why I will never stop. It’s the discovery of something so wonderful that it changes you after you turn the last page, very few books can do that to you.

6. One Man Guy by Michael Barakiva. This was such a beautiful book. And that’s really all the reason I need to inspire a re-read.

7. The Girl You Left Behind by Jojo Moyes. This is another recent read; I drafted a rambling review that will be posted tomorrow. To be honest, I had  to choose between this book and Me Before You – which was written by the same author. That book killed me too. But this one…ah. Just beautiful, and so engrossing. I just want to re-read it again.

8. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion. What’s not to love about this book? Don Tillman epitomizes what the world needs: honesty and transparency. Imagine how many conflict we can avoid if we don’t tip toe around each other? I want to re-read this because I feel like I could use his views on the world at the moment. I feel like I’ve made a lifetime career out of pleasing people. He’s inspiring.

9. Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan. How does one achieve immortality in the age of technology? The answer may be obvious, but the process by which the book arrive to the conclusion may surprise you. This book was an unsolvable Rubik’s cube that drove me crazy until the last page.

10. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sàenz. If there’s a coming of age book that should be a required reading amongst the book loving blogosphere, this is it. Do yourself a favour and read it. In fact, read it with me.

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Top Ten Tuesday [9]: The Love is Gone.

 

photo-7 Hi there!

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday are books that well, I’ve fallen out of love with. You know what I mean? Books that once upon a time I couldn’t get enough of until one day, the feeling’s gone. I’m not writing them off completely just yet. But for now, it’s looking like it ain’t happening anytime soon.


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Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs.
  There is no particular reason why this series and I didn’t really click. I think it’s more a case of the genre is just not something I’m a regular reader of.

 


 

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The Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas I don’t know what to say. I’ve been trying to read Throne of Glass since I got approved on it at Net Galley, but I just couldn’t get into it. You all know fantasy and I don’t really mix well so I guess it shouldn’t come as a surprise that I didn’t return its phone call. Le sigh.


 

IMG_7121 The Lux series by Jennifer L. Armentrout. Can you try and hold off the tomato-throwing until I get done with the rest of my list? I’m sorry, okay? Daemon is…I don’t know how to explain it. It was one of those relationships where I woke up one morning, saw who was next to me in bed and realize, damn. I deserve better! We had a toxic relationship, Daemon and I. So then I dropped him like a hot space debris.

 


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The Original Sinners series by Tiffany Reisz.  Hot sex couldn’t save this relationship. Well, that and I’m not into degrading sex. Sorry.


 

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Steampunk. You are cold and hard to read. I don’t even know what I saw in you.


 

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The Lorien Legacies by Pittacus Lore. This one for sure I can say that the love is fully gone. This book’s multiple personalities didn’t bode well with me.


 

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What can I say? I realized my mistake as soon as I bought these books. I just knew we weren’t going to be serious.


 

 

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The Collector by Victoria Scott. Well, I should’ve learned my lesson with Daemon.


 

 

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The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown. You used to be so good. Tried and tested and true. But you just got…old.

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Top Ten Tuesday [8]: Obsessed, Much?

photo-7 Hello. It’s not often that I participate in this weekly feature. I try to look for something fun; it’s just so happen that this week’s prompt enabled me to shelve my books the way I’ve always wanted it (by author’s work), so bonus! So this week, it’s ten authors I own the most books from.


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Sherrilyn Kenyon. A whopping 20 books, y’all. I don’t think I’ve ever completed the Dark Hunter Series; otherwise, there’d been more than 20.

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J.R. Ward. I’m up to date with Black Dagger Brotherhood (13 books in total, including a series of novellas book). I think I’m up to date with her Fallen Angel series as well, but I can’t find the rest.

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Melina Marchetta. This shouldn’t come as a surprise. I’m actually missing one (Gorgon in the Gully). I can’t find my copy as well. Boo.

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Sandra Brown. Romantic Suspense is her niche. I’ve been a big fan since she was a strictly romance writer for Love Swept. But I can’t get enough of her romantic suspense novels!

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Cassandra Clare. I haven’t read Clockwork Princess just because I didn’t like how the story went down. I’m in the midst of City of Heavenly Fire, and I’m dying to read The Bane Chronicles.

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Sophie Kinsella. Technically, there should’ve been 11 books here. I found another one after I took this picture. I was too lazy to redo. To be honest, I’ve only managed to get through one Shopaholic book; the heroine drove me nuts afterwards. Someday, I hope to be able to read the rest of the series.

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Philippa Gregory. Once upon a time, I was so into the Tudor novels. I managed to read most of her work then my interest just petered off.

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Lisa McMann. I’m a huge fan of this author, so anytime she has a new book out, I’m there with bells on! Not in the picture are her MG series, The Unwanteds.

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Sylvia Day. This lady has written gazillion books! I’m surprised I only have 8 of them, to be honest.

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Richelle Mead. There would’ve been more of her books had I not given away the first 3 books of her Bloodlines series. I also have her Succubus series but they’re in the cabin.

Honestly, there were a few more (Rachel Caine, J L Armentrout, Jane Austen, John Grisham and Anita Shreve) but I can only do ten authors. This was fun! It’s amazing how many books I’ve managed to hoard in the last few years! Thanks to The Broke and Bookish for the prompt!

Show me yours!

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Top Ten Tuesday [7]: Irresistible Covers

photo-7Today’s Top Ten Tuesday is about trends in book covers. But I thought I’d go ahead an deviate from the prompt. I thought about cover trends that we’ve been seeing a lot of lately, and decided that everyone would probably have the same covers on their list: girls in gowns, illustrated covers, bloody covers, and of course, half naked men showing off their six packs. So today, I’m going to do the covers and the over all appearance of a book that I can’t resist.

Some of these would probably be something that you’ve seen in my Photo Vomit posts, but bear with me. They are also the type of books that I’m more inclined to collect.

Here they are in no particular order:

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[1.] White Covers. I’m a big fan of the minimalist movement – in everything. So these covers are a no brainer for me.

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[2.] Penguin Vintage Covers. I’ve featured this on my Photo Vomit posts a couple of times already; so you all know how much I adore these!

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[3.] Unusual Texture. In this book’s case, it’s velvet. It’s very fitting to what’s inside. Tampa is a story about a teacher who preys on 14-year-old boys. I thought that black velvet is very appropriate, in a sense that the teacher shows a very soft, very unassuming exterior but she’s dark and rotten to the core.

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[4.] Penguin Drop Caps. I mean, how could I resist? It’s an injustice to pass on these.

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[5.] Saran-Wrapped Books. Not biodegradable, for sure. But it makes me wonder why there is a need to packaged this book in such a manner.

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[6.] Cloth-Covered Editions. Need I say more, really?

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[7.] Gilded Edges. Okay, for lack of a better word, I decided to use the term, gilded. I know gilding is mostly used when an item is gilded in gold but these multi-coloured ones are basically the same thing. Either way, I find myself unable to say no to these.


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[8.] Typography. I have bought a whole slew of books with unusual typography. Shown above are just a couple that I really, really love.

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[9.] Pulp Fiction. Again, this is more about my obsession with unique covers. It just so happens that there’s an entire line of these books. The retro looking covers makes me want to blow them up and mount them on my wall.

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[10.] Graphic/Animated. Something about the covers screams, light reading. I absolutely love these!

Special Mention:

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 So what’s in your top ten today?

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Top Ten Tuesday [6]: Books About Friendship

photo-7This week’s Top Ten list are books featuring strong friendships. Certainly, there were a whole slew to choose from. I had to select those that have been what I would consider as unforgettable. I admit that a couple of these books are somewhat unconventional, but friends come in different forms.

It is not difficult to define what friendship means, but much like love, it’s hard to explain exactly what draws a person to another.

In no particular order, here are my choices:

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1.  Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson Emily and Sloane couldn’t be more different than night and day; where Sloane is the bright sun that lights Emily’s world, she’s the cloudless starry sky of the darkest night. She shines in her own way, but not bright enough for everyone to notice. What’s great about their friendship is how much of Sloane’s courage she imparted on Emily when she left. Emily found herself when she lost Sloane.

2. Love and Other Foreign Words by Erin McCahan  The friendship between Josie and Stu is one that’s probably the most conventional. They’re neighbours; they grew up together, and they have one thing in common: brainiacs. They are the only ones who understood each other on a level that even their families do not. I picked this book because it was a classic example of a relationship that transcended friendship.

3. The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein This is unselfish friendship exemplified. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve read this to my boy, but every time I read it, it makes me stop and think.

4. Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen   Yes, I realized that Lizzie and Jane are sisters first before BFFs, but I still envy their friendship. From a meddling mother to a disapproving Darcy, Lizzie and Jane had each other’s backs through a lot of things.

5. Open Road Summer by Emery Lord  Reagan and Dee, much like Emily and Sloane are worlds different. Through Reagan’s rebellious stint, Dee never once judged her or left her side. Reagan, on the same account, has been Dee’s fierce defender. They are like siblings, in a way that they are fiercely loyal.

6. Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare.  What could be more telling of a true friendship than someone who would break his own heart for the sake of his friend? Given the choice, I think both boys would’ve done what the other had the guts to do.

7. Tell the Wolves I’m Home by Carol Rifka Brunt This book has a couple of equally heart-breaking friendships: June and Finn; June and Toby. Of course they had one common thread, and that is Finn. It’s hard to describe the friendship between all three; it’s one of those, it just IS.

8. The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Ogawa Their relationship went beyond domestic service she got paid for. She was patient, understanding, and she truly cared for an old-man who’d lost most of his mental capacity in an accident. Touching story.

9. Girlfriend in a Coma by Douglas Coupland A group of friends who stood by each other through the years; it’s like The Big Chill except that the one person they have in common was in a coma for years. This was an odd book, but even through the tumultuous changes every one has gone through, their friendship remained staunch.

10. Aristole and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz. One can argue that the heroic things Aristotle did for Dante is rooted to the fact that he was in love with him. But, I digress. Much like Emily in Since You’ve Been Gone, Aristotle was an introvert who found comfort in being alone. Dante broke him out of his shell, and had showed him a brand new perspective of the world he lived in.

Which books made your list today?

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