I’m a little late with this post, but I really wanted to do a round-up of my favorite books of 2017 so far. It’s been a GREAT reading year for me–so much better than 2015 and 2016. I’m only writing about books I read through the end of June, since that’s when the first half of 2017 ended. I’ll cover books I read in July at the end of the year.
Best Books Published in 2017…So Far
The Hush by Skye Melki-Wagner – I read this one very recently so it’s still fresh in my mind. I love how the author weaved music and magic together to make this really original fantasy world. I haven’t seen very many people reading this book, but it was epically awesome. I loved the characters, the writing, and the world. It had this almost Western vibe that really made it unique. Creepy monsters too.
Warcross by Marie Lu – This is one that everyone’s talking about, and I can totally understand why. Books about gaming are not usually my thing, but Warcross is so much more than that. It’s about a world competition within a game. There’s espionage, hacking, and all sorts of fun technology twisty stuff. It’s explained really well so it’s not hard to follow, and the plot is super tense and tightly paced.
Words In Deep Blue by Cath Crowley – One of the only contemporaries I read this year ended up being one of my favorites. It’s set in a bookshop in a perfect town. Love letters, puzzles, gorgeous writing, and man did it tug at my heartstrings. I’m gradually moving away from contemporary novels, but as long as books like these are around I’ll never be able to quit them completely.
The Salt Line by Holly Goddard Jones – If you read one adult fiction novel this year (please don’t), make it be this one. It sounds like a typical horror novel on paper, but that’s not what it is. Killer ticks, yes, but also an entirely structured, well-thought out post-apocalyptic version of the United States that I was absolutely flabbergasted by. I adored everything about this book–the antagonists, the characters, the resistance, the world, the writing–at this point it’s still my favorite novel of 2017.
Want by Cindy Pon – Want started out as a short story and was developed into a novel, and that’s the only reason I didn’t give it five stars. Though the world was excellent, I was looking for a it more depth. It’s diverse and tightly plotted, and definitely exciting. Want is the kind of science fiction novel I enjoy reading the most. It’s set in a futuristic Taiwan, and it features some awesome technology and a bleak world that I would love to explore further in another book, or in a game or film.
City of Saints and Thieves by Natalie C. Anderson – I can’t believe I waited so long to read this one. That should teach me not to put reading my review copies off. Well, I’m making up for it by featuring it on the blog twice. I will read anything this author writes. It’s an atmospheric, visual Africa, set half in Kenya and half in Congo. Thieves, breaking and entering, escape plots, the criminal underground, avenging a murder…if all of those things sound like things you would like, definitely read this book!
The Song Rising by Samantha Shannon – The Song Rising was probably my favorite book of The Bone Season series so far. In this one we get to see what other Scion cities are like, and I was impressed at the depth of Samantha Shannon’s imagination even more. With every book in this series, the world just grows with more and more depth, and the way this book set up for the next one, there will only be more coming. It’s tightly plotted with memorable characters, and that’s all I ever ask from this series.
Done Dirt Cheap by Sarah Nicole Lemon – I was sent Done Dirt Cheap unsolicited, and I almost decided not to read it because I didn’t think it would be a Kara book. Truthfully, it wasn’t a Kara book, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy it. Finding strong female friendships in young adult novels can be a frustrating task, but look no further, because you’ll find it here. This book was like Sons of Anarchy for girls, not that girls can’t watch SoA or anything, but you know what I mean. I didn’t ship the romance, but I certainly enjoyed the characters and plot.
Noteworthy by Riley Redgate – If I have one complaint about Noteworthy, it’s its length. I didn’t think it needed to be as long as it was, and it definitely could have been paced faster. But I still loved it. The romance was adorable, the book was exceptionally diverse, and I loved the a capella storyline. Jordan poses as a guy to make it into a male a capella group, and this book plays out about as humorously and adorably as one would expect.
Even the Darkest Stars by Heather Fawcett – Hey, okay, so this one’s not out yet, but you should definitely pre-order it. It’s a really inventive young adult fantasy set in a Himalayan kingdom. There is lots of mountain climbing, trekking, creepy creatures (so many), and a super twisty TWIST. I loved the characters and romance, and I am so on board for the rest of this series. This one is going to be a huge hit. It’s really well written, and I’m always impressed when a debut author bowls me over with super skills.