Top 5 Surprising Reads of 2019! | Top 5 Tuesdays

Hello again! It’s Tuesday, and of course that means it’s time for a Top 5 post. Top 5 Tuesdays and their topics are brought to you by Shanah @ the Bionic Bookworm. Check out her blog, she’s awesome, and this page for the list of topics for December!

2019 has been a really interesting year of reading for me. I’ve read such a wide variety of books, and many that I ended up loving. There are definitely a few that stand out, however, with how much they surprised me, either with how good they were or with how they made me feel.

So, without further adieu, here’s the list:

Josh & Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating by Christina Lauren

I was not expecting to love this book as much as I did, which is why this book was one of the surprises of 2019 for me. Not only do I not really read that much in the Romance genre, I’d never read anything by Christina Lauren and I only picked this book up on a whim (I’d read a mention of it somewhere and someone had said they loved it, except for that ending and I was intrigued). Now, it’s one of my favorite books of 2019 and I even bought myself a copy. How’s that for a surprise?

The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

Look, yes another Romance book – but another surprise! Who knew I would fall for two Romance novels in the same year? This book was a surprise to me because of this and also because of how different it seemed to what I generally know to expect from the Romance genre. Not only is it diverse, it’s also neuro-diverse. And it is such a joy to read. I bought this one for myself, as well, because I know it’s just one of those books that I’ll want to pick up from time to time and re-read. The characters are just so well written and the story is amazing. I kind of wish there’d be a move adaptation of this, because I think it could be really great!

Asking For It by Louise O’Neill

Oh boy – talk about opposite from the Romance genre! This gritty, heart-wrenching book really surprised me. I knew going in that it would definitely make me feel things, but I was unprepared for how very, very much I felt while reading this book. O’Neill does her best to pretty much slap you in the face with gender inequalities, with sexism, with slut-shaming. How can you stand up for rapists, how can you victim-blame, how can you not believe in the women who come forward with these truths. It is one of the bravest things a woman can do, openly inviting shame, humiliation, death-threats, trolling, the list goes on. This book is a gauntlet that you must go through and when you get to the other side you will be a changed person. I know I am.

Damsel by Elana K. Arnold

This book kind of falls in line with Asking For It. Arnold dissects similar points, but in a fantasy genre, and mostly about how women are basically objectified, their bodies important for one reason only: producing heirs, continuing the bloodline. Otherwise, they’re meant to be seen and not heard, they are the props for men. This book was a surprise to me because of how well-crafted the story is – and Arnold’s shocking ending. To say this book is controversial would be putting it lightly. I’m well aware of the divide it has created between readers. I, for one, think it’s a fantastic story, chilling and, yes, at times explicit. But it’s truly a masterpiece of fiction.

The Guinevere Deception by Kiersten White

I wanted to end with this one, a high note simply for the fact that I received so much joy from reading this book. I have read a book by White before and I thought I might not enjoy this book, or I was worried about what this book might bring up. I was, needless to say, surprised by it – mostly in how much I ended up loving it. I love this book – it is a great Arthurian retelling and it’s very well written. I love the characters, I love the magic, I love the world…I was so happily surprised to love it and I hope the rest of the series upholds this feeling for me.

Thoughts & Thanks!

What do you think of my selections? What books surprised you the most this year?

Thank you for reading this post. Let’s chat in the comments! And, as always, happy reading!

6 thoughts on “Top 5 Surprising Reads of 2019! | Top 5 Tuesdays

  1. Asking For It is phenomenal!!! That book is the reason I started writing book reviews. I read it the day after it was first released and was so moved to write a review of it because there is just so much that is thought provoking about it. A terrifying book but a necessary book!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can totally see it being such a catalyst. I was definitely greatly affected by it. I was already a firm believer in the message this book presents, but it’s so powerful that I would definitely recommend it to any teenager growing up in our times right now.

      Liked by 1 person

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