Bookish Lists

Book Characters I Would Date

Hey, everybody! If you’ve been around for awhile, you would know that I love fictional characters over real people because they don’t disappoint me. Today’s post is a list of book characters I would date. Don’t worry, my choices aren’t all from Romance novels. Ok, that may be a little bit of a lie. There is no particular order to this list so enjoy!

Julian Blackthorn from The Dark Artifices series by Cassandra Clare

Are you surprised I didn’t pick a Herondale? Don’t get me wrong, I love the Herondale boys but I sure as hell wouldn’t date one. Ok, I would most likely date Jace. Out of all the characters in the Shadowhunters Chronicles, I feel that I’m the most compatible with Julian Blackthorn. He’s an artist that’s extremely protective of his family, an attribute I love to read about. Plus, Julian basically raised his younger siblings himself which makes him wiser than most guys his age.

August Wilson from the Hoops series by Kennedy Ryan

August is such a sweetie! I love how much he cares for Iris even when he can’t be with her. If I met someone like August, I would ask him out for coffee in a heartbeat. He’s the type of person who isn’t afraid to be open up to someone new which is something I love see because I tend to do the same.

Silas Moore from The Rusk University series by Cora Carmack

If you liked Tim Riggins from Friday Night Lights then you’ll fall head over heels for Silas Moore. He is your typical bad boy athlete, but he is well aware that he needs to get his shit together. I really admired how he would do anything for Dylan, she is his everything. That’s the kind of relationship I really strive to have minus the whole meeting in jail thing.

Jared Trent from The Fall Away series by Penelope Douglas

Jared reminds me of Logan Echolls but as a book character. I’m NOT trying to hide the fact that he was complete asshole to Tate in the beginning, but the way he has changed over the course of the series is why I would date him. The way how he would do anything for Tate, his friends, and his family is what makes Jared so lovable.

Those are some of the books characters I would date. What did you think of this little post? Is it something I should do again? Tell me your thoughts in the comments below!

Until we meet again, go read a book.

Bookish Lists

My Favorite Romance Books

Happy Valentine’s Day, everybody! I know a lot of people hate today because of how lonely it can make you feel or just think it’s a corporate holiday so people will buy cards and chocolate. Even though I haven’t had a special someone to spend Valentine’s Day with ever, I do have my Romance books! So, I thought it would be fun to share some of my favorite Romance books with y’all. Also, there is no particular order to this list whatsoever.

After the Fall by Giana Darling (Fallen Men #4)

after the fallThis is the fourth book in Giana Darling’s Fallen Men series, which is a series of stand-alone MC Romances. After the Fall is a continuation of Cress and King’s story from the first book, Lessons in Corruption.

King Kyle Garro is supposed to lead the Fallen, it’s in his blood. He didn’t expect to meet Cressida Irons and fall in love with her during his senior year. Five years later, King and his Queenie are still going strong. He knows that the MC life is filled with so much loss and violence, but he has hope that Cress will stay to be his Queenie for the rest of their lives. CW: Violence. 

I had a really hard time picking out a book from this series because I honestly love them all, but King has my heart. An alpha hero who is a poet at heart is my type of guy. Plus, King’s love for apple pie is just so damn cute. Apple pie is my favorite type of pie with my grandmother’s chocolate cream pie being a close second. Plus, King writing poetry on Cress is one of the best scenes Giana Darling has ever written. Zeus and Loulou’s lollipop scene from Welcome to the Dark Side is my second favorite Fallen scene if anyone was wondering.

The Wreckage of Us by Brittainy C. Cherry

the wreckage of usThis book took me by surprise. I had been wanting to read Brittainy C. Cherry for awhile, but I wasn’t sure where to start since she has a huge backlist. I came across this book because it was on sale in the kindle store so I decided to buy. Please read this book because it’s beautifully written and addictive.

Hazel, never in a million years, thought Ian Parker would be the person who ended up helping her during the darkest period of her life. Her abusive, drug-dealer of a stepdad has kicked her out of the house when all she wants to do is look after her mom who is pregnant. Living in the shed on the farm she’s working on, Hazel knows that something bad is bound to happen. Ian finds out where Hazel is staying and begs her to stay with him at his house. A whole bunch of things start happening after that. CW: Drug Use, Parental Abandonment, Domestic Abuse, Cancer. 

I blew through this book in two days! Brittainy C. Cherry writes this beautiful prose that will have you begging for more. If you like enemies-to-lovers, rockstar, or small town Romances than this is the book for you. Plus, there may or may not be the roommate trope, you’ll have to read to find out.

Getting Schooled by Christina C. Jones (The Wright Brothers #1)

getting schooledFor the past few months, I’ve nothing but praise for any Christina C. Jones has written so when I found out my library had some of her books, I immediately checked out Getting Schooled. It was so so good, please pick up this book if you get the chance.

Reese has just accepted a position as a graduate assistant. Everything seems to be going well until she literally runs into a student from the class she’s helping with. Jay, the student Reese runs into, is just taking the class Reese is helping with to fulfill a gen. ed  requirement. The last thing either person was expecting was to become enamored with each other. CW: Deceased Parent, Cheating.

I flew through this book in only four days! The fact that Reese’s mom was Literature professor really peaked my interest since I’m an English major. I think the connection between Reese and Jay was extremely realistic and well-written. The ending was a bit abrupt, but it was a great way to end the book as it left some doors open for the other books in the series. I’m hoping to pick up the rest of the series soon, I’m just busy with school.

Punk 57 by Penelope Douglas

punk 57We all knew this was going to be on the list. It was favorite book last year and I have not shut up about Penelope Douglas since. This is a stand-alone, but it is set in the same universe of Pen’s Devil’s Night series which I still need to pick up.

Ryen and Misha have been pen-pals for the past seven years because of a past school assignment mishap. They have become very close over the past seven years. The two decided on a set of rules: no social media, no phone numbers, and no pictures. Everything was going well until Misha ruined it. CW: Bullying, Parental Abandonment. 

I really liked how Misha and Ryen changed over the course of the book. They grew up, learning that appearances aren’t everything. The writing was fantastic and the steaminess was top-tier. Please, if you are interested in any of the books on this list, this one is a must-read.

Those were all of the Romance books I could think of for this post. Have you read any of these books? If so, which was your favorite? Do you have any recommendations for me? Leave your recs in the comments! Thanks for reading this post. I bet y’all are getting annoyed with me constantly recommending Punk 57, but I’m not going to stop.

~Kat

Discussion Posts

Blog Goals For Spring Semester 2021

Hi y’all! Today is the first day of my Spring semester. I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned this but I am a sophomore at Hofstra University where I major in English with a concentration in Children’s and YA Literature. Being in Long Island is a bit different than Northern Virginia, but I’m surviving. Not sure where I would be without my family on the island and my friends.

Anyway, I’ll be talking about some of the goals I have for this semester. Hope you stick around!

1.).   Try to post at least twice a month

I think this is a great goal because I know it’s one I can attain. From all the planning I’ve been doing over my break, I have a good number posts that are being drafted as I type.

2.)    Read at least one book for fun a month

Last semester, I really focused on reading for fun and not focusing on reading what I needed for class. That was a huge problem because I am an English major and that requires me to read books I would not normally pick up. We’re in a pandemic, I read for the escapism. Plus, I was kind of miserable last semester.

3.)     Make sure I proofread!!!

I’m so bad at this. I apologize for anyone who has read a post of mine that is filled with spelling errors. I’m not perfect, so mistakes are bound to happen!

4.)     Incorporate what I’m reading for class into my posts. 

I’m an English major so I might as well incorporate what I’m reading for class into my blog. I’ve included some of my readings from a couple semesters ago, but I thought the things I read last semester wouldn’t interest anyone. We read some really interesting works in the Fall, so I’m kind of regretting not posting about any of them.

Those are my goals for this semester! Thanks for sticking around if you made to the end. What do you think of my goals? Do you think I’ll be able to maintain these goals? If you have any thoughts, leave them in the comments below.

~Kat

Book Reviews

The City We Became by N.K. Jemisin

the city we becameHey! It’s Kat and I’m here to review an Adult Fantasy that has been on my radar for almost a year. It’s The City We Became by N.K. Jemisin. This is Urban-Fantasy set in New York City. We follow five people who need to do whatever they can to save the city that never sleeps. I gave this book 4.5/5 stars. CW: Racism, Neo-Nazi Character, Abuse, Attempted Rape, Xenophobia. 

There are five people who represent the five boroughs of New York City. These five people need to come together to protect the city from this dark entity that wants it to be destroyed.

The concept of this book was so interesting! Going to school on Long Island, I frequented the city quite a bit pre-COVID. I spent a lot of time at Penn Station riding the LIRR so its use in the story brought back some fun memories.

Character-wise, I liked reading each perspective. My favorite perspective is a tie between Bronca (The Bronx) and Brooklyn. They are both strong characters with the most backstory. I wanted more chapters that focused on Manny because there were so many open-ended questions with his character. Aislyn was my least favorite character because she just annoyed me to no end, but her character just sort of disappeared after her interaction with the other characters towards the end of the book.

I was a little confused in the beginning but by chapter two everything started to click. N.K. Jemisin wrote a short story that from my understanding is a prequel to this book. It ends where this book picks up. This was also my first dip into Adult Fantasy which was another reason it took me awhile to get into the story.

Listen to the audiobook because it will help you stick with the book if you get confused and the narrator did an amazing job with the narration. Overall, I’m really glad that I decided to finally pick this up. This is a great book to read if you want a unique outlook on New York City.

Those were my thoughts on The City We Became by N.K. Jemisin. Which of her books should I pick up next? When do you think the sequel will be released and what major city do think it will focus on? Talk to me in the comments.

~ Kat

Playlists

Winter 2021 Playlist

Hey, everybody! It’s a new season which means it’s time for me to share yet another playlist I have created. I had a hard time making this playlist because last month, my grandmother passed away unexpectedly. Listening to music and reading really helped with my grief. I hyper-focused on making this playlist to my liking which is why I really hope you give it a listen or at least find some new music.

  • This Time by Arrows in Action
  • Pins & Needles by 888
  • Rad Drugz by MISSIO
  • cotton candy by YUNGBLUD
  • bad blood by godz
  • New Girl by Moscow Apartment
  • circle the drain by soccer mommy
  • Take a Look by Liz Phair
  • Sunny Came Home by Shawn Colvin
  • Goodbye Earl by The Chicks
  • Balloons by Secondhand Sound
  • Autoportrait by Demob Happy
  • I Wanna Be Okay by Blindlove
  • Flawless by Dorothy
  • Son of a Preacher Man by Katey Sagal and The Forest Rangers
  • White Flag by Dido
  • Jessica by girlfriends
  • Change by Pale Waves
  • best of me by VÉRITÉ
  • Flames by MOD SUN (feat. Avril Lavigne)
  • Young & Faded by The Hunna
  • nightmare by nothing,nowhere.

I hope you found some new songs to listen to while you read. Do you like any of these songs or artists? If so, which is your personal favorite? Has music ever helped with your grief? Talk to me in the comments below.

~ Kat

Book Reviews

Majesty by Katharine McGee

majestyFirst review of the new year! It’s Kat and I’m here to review Majesty by Katharine McGee. I read this back in October, but felt this would be a great review to start off 2021. This is the sequel American Royals and it picks up right after the first book’s ending with Beatrice getting ready to become America’s first queen. I gave this book 4/5 stars, which are well-deserved in my opinion! CW: Blackmail, Death of a Parent, Allusions to Racism. 

Is America ready for Beatrice to be crowned their queen? Beatrice is still grappling with everything she has lost with her new title. Her younger sister, Samantha, is trying her best to live up to her “party girl” personality. Sam’s best friend, Nina, is trying her best to avoid her ex-boyfriend Jeff, Sam’s twin brother. Life isn’t exactly very easy for the royals at the moment.

Now onto the actual review. I liked this book way more than the first book. The way this book dealt with sexism and change blew my mind. Beatrice really grew as a character and found herself as she began her new reign as Queen of America. Samantha grew out of the media’s portrayal of her. Plus, the few chapters we got of Nina really showed becoming more of her own person, not just Princess Samantha’s best friend and Prince Jefferson’s ex-girlfriend.

McGee left some doors open in case she decides to write more in this series and I hope she does decide to return! I would really like to know what happens with Jeff because he did not really appear that much throughout the story.

The writing was also a huge improvement from the first book! I was not as confused reading this because it was so much easier to differentiate between the P.O.V.s. Beatrice was my favorite perspective to read from and Daphne was still my least favorite.

That’s my review! Thanks for sticking around. Have you read Majesty yet? If you have, what did you think of it? Talk to me in the comments below.

~Kat

Bookish Lists

2021 Releases I’m Excited For

Hi, everyone! Let’s hope this year will be better than last year. Since it’s already 2021, that means it’s time to share what new releases I hope to pick up this year. I unfortunately did not get to pick up all of the releases I was excited for last year, so I will try my best to prevent a repeat of that. Also, there is no particular order to this list at all!

Beth & Amy by Virginia Kantra (May 11, 2021)

beth and amyThis is the sequel to Meg & Jo by this author and I’m so excited to get my hands on a copy! In the first book we followed the oldest March sisters, now we are following the youngest March sisters.

Amy, the youngest sister, is a lot more like Jo than she realizes because she’s tried her very best to keep her distance from her North Carolina hometown. Jo’s wedding forces Amy to confront her One Big Mistake that happened when she was in Paris. Beth, the third March sister, is on the road using her skills as an amazing singer-songwriter. Except the tour is taking a toll on her mental health. She comes to the realization of some things at Jo’s wedding.

The Ex Talk by Rachel Lynn Solomon (January 26, 2021)

the ex talkI used to listen to radio all of the time when I was younger. I don’t listen to it so much anymore, but I always loved listening to the banter between the hosts. So, I was extremely excited to add this to my TBR when I read the synopsis.

Shay has been producing public radio for almost ten years which is why she is so annoyed that her younger co-worker, Dominic, thinks he knows everything there is about public radio. Shay comes up with an idea for a new show, The Ex Talk. Two exes will give relationship advice on-air. In love with the concept, the station wants Shay and Dominic to be the hosts since they already have this strong distain towards each other. They hate that they’re lying to listeners, but sparks start to fly when their show becomes popular.

A Pho Love Story by Loan Le (February 9, 2021)

a pho love storyI love the enemies-to-lovers trope! I’m interested to see how this read will turn out because there is a lot of hype surrounding it. I think I’ll also be craving some Vietnamese food while I’m reading this.

Bao Nguyen is your average Joe. His grades are ok, doesn’t really have a social life, and isn’t really receiving any favoritism from his parents. He works at his family’s pho restaurant and is the fifth favorite employee. Linh Mai is an artist who is trapped under her parents’ expectations- like being a full-time employee at the family’s pho restaurant. Bao and Linh’s families have been at each other’s throats for years and something happens that lets Bao and Linh get to know each other.

The Mixtape by Brittainy C. Cherry (May 11, 2021)

the mixtapeI devoured The Wreckage of Us last month and I’m really anxious to read more of Brittainy C. Cherry’s books. I also want to try read most of her backlist, but I’m not sure where to start.

There isn’t a synopsis listed online but from the title, I’m assuming it has some sort of theme surrounding music. If you’ve been following my blog for awhile, you’ll know that music holds a very special place in my heart. I actually used to make CDs for my carpool rides back in high school because it gave me a reason to show my cousins some new music I had discovered. I wonder if it’s set in the same universe as The Wreckage of Us? Can’t wait to devour this as soon as I can!

Ace of Spades by Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé (June 10, 2021)

ace of spadesI love a good YA thriller! It’s been pitched as Gossip Girl meets Jordan Peele’s iconic movie, Get Out. That’s what got me hooked, but I love it when characters are trying to take down a bully.

Also, look at this gorgeous cover! This might be the UK cover, but it’s stunning. Can’t wait to get my hands on a copy of this book.

Devon Richards and Chiamaka Adebyo are selected as their senior class prefects, which seems all well and good. It’s a position to put on your college applications and may even give you place in the race for valedictorian. Except an anonymous bully named Aces, threatens to reveal some life-altering secrets. Aces threats turn into a sick game that Devon and Chiamaka need to stop before it becomes deadly.

Falls Boys by Penelope Douglas (Summer 2021)

falls boys (not actual cover)This is the first book in the Fall Away spin-off series, Hellbent. If you have been following my reviews the last few months, you’ll see that Penelope Douglas has become a favorite author of mine. I can’t wait to devour every book in this series when they are released!

There isn’t much of a synopsis, but I know we are following Hawke. He is the son of Jax and Juliet from the original series. From what I’ve seen shared about the book, Hawke seems to fall for his foster sister.

Yes, this seems a bit taboo but I have yet to be disappointed with anything Pen has released. From what little scenes Hawke had in Next to Never, he’s a lot like his father.

Chain of Iron by Cassandra Clare (March 2, 2021) Mild Spoilers!- you’ve been warned

chain of ironY’all should have expected this to be on the list. I mean it’s a Cassie Clare book and I never shut up about her series. I really want explore more of the Blackthorn family. Grace just doesn’t seem like a trustworthy character, while Jesse seems trusting and his relationship with Lucie is interesting.

This is the sequel to Chain of Gold. Cordelia Carstairs seems to have her dreams come true. She is with her childhood crush, her father is back, and she’s got her sword, Cortana. Plus, she’s got a whole new group of friends, the Merry Thieves. Cordelia even has a best friend, her parabatai, Lucie Herondale. While everything seems perfect, most of it is a sham. James is in love with the mysterious Grace Blackthorn, Cortana burns Cordelia’s hand whenever she touches it, and her father isn’t the person she remembers.

Counting Down with You by Tashie Bhuiyan (May 4, 2021)

counting down with youI love the fake dating trope! I haven’t read a lot of YA with fake dating, but this book looks so good. A bad boy who promises to buy his fake girlfriend books? I’m sold! I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy. Also, I believe this is Tashie’s debut so that makes picking up this book even more exciting.

Karina Ahmed is a rule-follower doing everything that’s expected of her. She thought her parent’s trip to Bangladesh would bring her some peace and quiet. One lie shatters that dream when her school’s resident bad boy who she is tutoring, says that they’re dating. Karina knew that tutoring Ace Clyde was crossing a huge line, but could she go with this whole fake-dating thing?

Those are some of the 2021 releases I really want to pick up this year. Do you want to read any of these books as well? If you do, let me know in the comments below. Also, are there any 2021 releases I missed? If there are, tell me in the comments. Until we meet again, happy reading.

~Kat

TBRs

Winter Break TBR

Hey, everybody! First and foremost, I want to wish y’all a happy new year because we are in need of a good year. I read way more books than I expected to last year, but I’m going to try to read as much as I can this year. Reading is going to be a little bit of challenge because this semester I’m taking four English classes which means not a lot of time to read for fun. Since my winter break technically started last month, I wanted to share some of the books I plan on reading during the rest of my break. Not sure if I’ll be able to get to all of these books, but hopefully I can get through a good amount of them.

Love and Other Train Wrecks by Leah Konen

love and other train wrecksIt’s a 24-hour love story between two strangers. Noah is a hopeless romantic on this train trying to win back his first love. Ammy doesn’t believe in love because she’s never had a good example of it in her life. She’s on this train to escape her parents. After a train-wreck, Noah and Ammy are forced to travel together because they are desperate to reach their destination of Upstate New York.

The synopsis reminds of The Chaos of Standing Still, which I loved last year! These 24-hour romances are one of my favorite types of Romances to read. It seems like this will be a quick read, but we’ll see. I also really liked Leah Konen’s previous release, The Last Time We Were Us. It’s been awhile since I’ve read a YA Romance, but this has been on my TBR for months and it takes place during a snowstorm. It sounds like the perfect read for a snow day!

Long Shot by Kennedy Ryan (Hoops #1)

long shotIris thought dating a basketball player would be this fairy tale that you see on TV, but she was very wrong. She’s never had the happily ever after that girls have dreamt of having. Then she met August West. She can’t be with him, but she wants to be. August also wants to be with Iris. CW: Domestic Violence. 

I have heard nothing but amazing things about Kennedy Ryan’s books. I’m so excited to finally get the chance to read Long Shot! It’s a basketball Romance, which is a subgenre that I’ve been dying to read. Hopefully, I’ll devour this book so I can pick up the rest of the trilogy. At least I think this is a trilogy.

The Roommate by Rosie Danan

the roommateClara’s family are an infamously elite family known for their lack of control except for the daughter, Clara. Everyone has a weakness and Clara’s is her childhood crush, Everett. He invites her to move cross-country with him. His offer sounds too good to be true, which is unfortunately true. Clara is sharing an apartment with a complete stranger, Josh. He happens to be a pornstar. Clare isn’t sure that she’ll be able to survive living with Josh, but it will cause a scandalous story. They both believe that women deserve better sex and decide to do something about it.

I am a sucker for the roommate trope. Plus, having the hero working in the porn industry is something I haven’t read in the Romance books I’ve read thus far.  I know the cover makes this look like this cute romcom type book, but I don’t think that is the case. There have been mixed reviews on the book, but I think I’ll enjoy it. Should I wait to read this until Valentine’s Day?

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

little fires everywhereIn a Cleveland suburb, everything is planned. Think of white picket fences and colonial type houses or just think of the Weeds opening theme. Elena Richardson is your stereotypical rule-following suburban housewife. Then Mia Warren who is an artist and a single mom.  Mia and her daughter, Pearl, move into a house they rented from the Richardson family. Mia is hiding a huge secret that could cause an uproar in the neighborhood. Friends of the Richardsons attempt to adopt a Chinese-American baby which causes a huge custody battle. Mia and Elena find themselves on opposite sides of it.

I meant to read this last year, but I kept getting sidetracked. My grandmother read this and enjoyed it. She actually gave me her copy so I could read it. I’ve heard nothing but amazing things about Celeste Ng’s writing and cannot wait to read this. Is the adaptation worth watching? Should I listen to the audiobook?

Rent a Boyfriend by Gloria Chao

rent a boyfriendChloe Wang is really nervous about her parents meeting her boyfriend. She hasn’t even met him yet because she hired through a boyfriend renting service called, “Rent For Your ‘Rents.” It’s a company for pleasing a person’s traditional Asian family. Drew Chan took the job because he’s an artist trying to keep a roof over his head.

I read an article a couple semesters ago about renting a family member and thought it was so interesting. Reading the synopsis of this book reminded me of the article. I can’t find it which sucks because I really wanted to share it with y’all. I’ve also heard that Gloria Chao is an amazing writer. If I like Rent a Boyfriend, I’ll definitely try to read her backlist.

Those are the rest of the books I plan to read during the rest of my winter break. What books are you planning to read during your winter break? Have you read any of these books? If so, which was your favorite? Talk to me in the comments! Thanks for reading.

~Kat

Book Reviews

No Exit by Taylor Adams

no exitHey, guys! Down in Virginia we just had our first winter storm earlier this month. While we didn’t get a lot of snow in my area of Northern Virginia because only a few inches fell, I decided to sit on my couch and curl up with a good book in front of the fireplace. Today, I’ll be reviewing No Exit by Taylor Adams. This Thriller follows Darby Thorne who is snowed-in at a Colorado rest stop and finds a little girl in a cage in the back of one of the cars in the parking lot. I gave this 4/5 stars. CW: Violence, Torture, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, Kidnapping, Cancer, Sex-Trafficking. 

Darby Thorne is a college sophomore who is on her way home to visit her mother, who is dying of cancer. She gets caught in a snowstorm and is forced to stop at rest stop in Colorado. Trying to get a cell signal, she sees something terrifying. Darby sees a girl trapped in a cage in one the cars in the parking lot. With a bunch of questions racing in her mind, Darby determines that she needs to save this girl.

This book was a whirlwind to read! The author did a very good job with the pacing of everything since it took place during a single night. I will certainly see rest stops differently because this book was fucking creepy as hell.

My edition had the chapters listed as timestamps which was very interesting. Plus, there were these photographs to illustrate the certain times of day like dusk, night, and the witching hours. These photographs were beautiful and atmospheric!

The book is written in third person, which I didn’t like. It was one of the reasons why I docked a star. The story could have been stronger if it shifted to first-person P.O.V.s switching from Darby to Ashley to Lars. We got a lot of backstory from what we were given, but those backstories would have left a stronger impact on readers if they were told from a first-person P.O.V.

Have you read No Exit? If you have, tell me what you thought because I would love to start a conversation. Also, please leave your favorite snowy-set Thrillers in the comments below!

~Kat

Bookish Lists

My Favorite Books of 2020

Merry Christmas Eve to those who are celebrating! I can’t believe that the year is almost over. Since it’s the end of the year, that means it’s time to share my favorite books of the year. I really read over 100 books this year, I haven’t had a reading year be this successful since 2018! For this post, I will not be including any rereads as those deserve a post of their own. There is going to be a particular order to this list as I will be counting down from 10 to 1. Enjoy!

Honorable Mention:

Welcome to the Dark Side by Giana Darling (Fallen Men #2)

welcome to the dark sideLou is the perfect example of the preacher’s granddaughter. She volunteered at an autism center, sat in the front pew at church, and was a great role model for her younger sister Beatrice. Then Lou was diagnosed with cancer. Years later, seventeen-year-old Lou is sick of her perfect life so she decides to start taking a walk on the wild side. Lou finally sees Zeus Garro again, the man who took a bullet for her when she was a kid. He became her guardian monster, the title she dubbed him when they wrote to each other while Zeus was in jail. Being the president of the Fallen MC, when you make a deal with him, you make the deal with the devil. CW: Gun Violence, Verbally Abusive Parent, Cancer.

I love Daddy Zeus and Loulou! This book is a bit taboo given the nineteen-year age gap between Zeus and Lou, but holy shit their romance is so fucking good. Their relationship is legal as the age of consent in Canada is sixteen. It is forbidden, it is angsty, and it is action-packed. Plus, it’s filled with a good amount of smutty scenes. If you are going to read any books from the Fallen Men series, please read this one!

10. Felix Ever After by Kacen Callender

felix ever afterThis book follows Felix Love, who ironically has never been in love. Felix is scared that since he is Black, queer, and transgender, that he’ll never get to have a happy ending like other people. When someone starts blackmailing Felix with transphobic messages, he wants to get even. The only thing he didn’t plan on happening were things becoming much more complicated than expected. CW: Deadnaming, Transphobia, Bullying, Absentee Parent.

Please read this book because it is so beautifully written. It is an amazing coming-of-age story! I still think about this book all of the time, so please consider picking it up. Kacen Callender is an amazing writer and I can’t wait to read the rest of their books in the near future!

9. A Fine Team Man by Joe Cox

a fine team manThis book follows the life of famous baseball legend, Jackie Robinson. Each chapter centers on a person who became an integral part in Jackie’s life as a baseball player. There are chapters on Rachel Robinson, Branch Rickey, Happy Chandler, Clyde Sukeforth, Red Barber, Wendell Smith, Burt Shotton, Pee Wee Reese, and Dixie Walker.

This is a biography I read in my Baseball History class I took in the Spring semester. If you know me, you know I’m not a huge non-fiction fan so the fact that this book is even on this list is a surprise. I really enjoyed reading this as I am a huge baseball fan (Go Nats and Red Sox!) and Jackie Robinson is one the greatest baseball players of all time. Please pick this up if you get the chance, it’s an amazing read.

8. Pet Sematary by Stephen King

pet semataryIn this novel, we follow the Creed family who have just moved into a nice house in rural Maine. They seem perfect with Mr. Creed being a doctor, Mrs. Creed being super friendly, an imaginative little girl, an infant son, and a little black cat. Except there is something terrifying behind their house, the pet sematary. CW: Grief. 

This is the second Stephen King book I’ve read, and I plan to read more soon. What I loved about this book was how realistic some of the events were, it’s what makes the book feel so terrifying. I believe King even said that Pet Sematary is his scariest book ever written.

7. A Time to Kill  by John Grisham

a time to killJake Brigance, a young street lawyer, takes on a huge case when he defends Carl Lee Hailey. Carl Lee, a Black man, is being charged with the murder of the two white men who raped his little girl. Now with the case of a lifetime, Jake has to do all he can to free Carl Lee. CW: Racism, KKK, Violence, Rape. 

I wasn’t going to include this, but I ended up reading this book two times this year. I think I mentioned this in my August TBR post, but I reread this for my honors coursework for my Law & Literature class. I picked up on so many more things my second time reading, some good and some bad. There are aspects that have not aged well and some aspects that mirror today’s world. This is a great book to start with if you want to start reading Grisham’s books.

6. The Mistake by Elle Kennedy (Off-Campus #2)

the mistakeJohn Logan is a junior at Briar University, so he’s used to getting any girl he encounters. While his life seems perfect, Logan is hiding a family secret which will force him to live a life he doesn’t want. Then he meets Grace Ivers who is a freshman and the perfect distraction. Logan does something stupid and sets off to spend his senior year trying to get Grace to give him a second chance. CW: Alcoholism, Divorce, Attempted Rape. 

I knew this was going to be my favorite in the series when Logan and Grace watched Die Hard. Out of all of the books in the Off Campus series, I think this is the most realistic. Having a meet-cute isn’t always going to initiate the start of a relationship. I would love to read more of Logan and Grace if they make an appearance Elle Kennedy’s Briar U series.

5. Meg & Jo by Virginia Kantra

meg and joThe March sisters- Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy- are all grown up, living their own lives and dreams. Jo is living in New York, struggling as a prep cook and is a secret food blogger. She never expected that her journalism career would fall by the wayside, except it did. Then there is Meg. She seems to have it all- loving husband, an adorable set of twins, the nice house in the suburbs- but life isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. To add to the sisters’ stress, their mother ends up in the hospital during the holidays. Soon, the March sisters will rediscover that the bond of family is what really matters. CW: Cheating, Sick Parent, Divorce. 

I love Little Women and I love reading stories about families. I was a little skeptical going into this because of the mixed-reviews I heard, but I’m really glad I enjoyed this book. I can’t wait for Virginia Kantra to release Beth & Amy! If you want to hear more in-depth thoughts, check out my review.

4. Broken Knight by L.J. Shen (All Saints High #2)

broken knightLuna Rexroth is everyone’s favorite wallflower in Todos Santos, California. She’s extremely sweet, hard-working, and quiet. Underneath her shell, Luna knows exactly what she wants. She wants her best friend, Knight Cole. He was the boy who taught her how to cuss in sign language, stood up for her when others brought her down, made her smile, and even got her to laugh. Knight Cole is the football star, the most popular guy at All Saints High School, and the troublemaker. While every girl wants him, he only has eyes for Luna. She isn’t the same girl she used to be. CW: Death of a Parent, Alcoholism, Mention of Rape, Drug Use, Parental Abandonment, Slut Shaming, Grief. 

This book broke me and I loved every single second of it. Knight is my favorite tothole, with Luna being a close second. Trent chasing Knight with that baseball bat was one of the best scenes I’ve ever read. For those of you unfamiliar with L.J. Shen’s All Saints High series, it’s the spinoff to her Sinners of Saint series which follows the four hotholes of Todos Santos, California.

3. The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

Yoon_9780553496680_jkt_all_r1.inddThis book follows three narrators: Natasha, Daniel, and the Universe. Natasha is a believer in facts, which leaves no room for destiny. When her family is about to be deported, Natasha is thrown in a loop when she meets Daniel. Daniel, a poet who is pressured by his parents’ high expectation for college and his future career, forgets all of his pressures when he meets Natasha. The Universe connects the missing dots between Natasha, Daniel, and the people they encounter. CW: Mention of Suicide, Alcoholism, Racism. 

This book was so cute, but so heart-wrenching at the same time. When I picked up this book, I thought it was this light-hearted book – I was mistaken. Instead, I read a story which focused on a bunch of hard topics people encounter because life isn’t easy – it can be really fucking hard. Listen to the audiobook because the narrators did an amazing job with their narration.

2. Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare (Last Hours #1)

chain of goldCordelia Carstairs’ life is about to be turned upside down. Her father gets accused of a terrible crime which forces her mother to move Cordelia and her brother to London. This finally gives Cordelia the chance to reconnect with her childhood friends James and Lucie Herondale. There have been demons attacks all over London and it’s up to the Shadowhunters to stop them.

A Cassie Clare book isn’t first? Are you shocked? As soon as I finished reading, I thought Chain of Gold was going to be my number 1 book of the year, but feelings change. I can’t wait for the rest of the series to come out so I can fly through all of the books. I loved every scene with Cordelia because she reminds me of Emma Carstairs, I mean they are related. Plus, getting to see more of Will and Tessa was a treat!

1.  Punk 57 by Penelope Douglas

punk 57Misha and Ryen have been penpals since the fifth grade because each of their teachers misgendered the kids because of their names. It didn’t take long for them to figure out their teachers’ mistakes. So over the next seven years, Misha and Ryen embarked on a great friendship. They only had three rules: no social media, no phone numbers, and no pictures.

Things were great until Misha ruined it. He came across this girl online after seeing her at a party. He overhears that her name was Ryen. He has to meet her, but he just doesn’t expect to hate the Ryen he meets. Then, there is Ryen. She is really taken aback when she hasn’t heard from Misha in over three months. Without him, Ryen is losing her mind.  Now, Ryen is worried that Misha, her lifeline, is gone. CW: Bullying, Parental Abandonment. 

Are we surprised? I’ve mentioned numerous times that Penelope Douglas has become one of my favorite authors. The best part of Punk 57 is the character development because Misha and Ryen really grow up. Misha has been one of my favorite love interests I’ve ever read in the New Adult genre because I really like reading about the broody musician. I wrote a long review so you can go check that out if you want a more in-depth review.

Those are my favorite books of 2020! Did we read any of the same books? If so, which was your favorite? What were some of the books on your favorites list this year? Tell me in the comments below! Happy holidays and please stay safe.

~Kat