This Chicks Sunday Commentary: My Top 10 Reviewed Young Adult Novels of 2017

As I sifted through my reviews from 2017 for last Sunday’s Commentary of my Top 5 Reviewed Novels of 2017 in the Adult fiction category I realized that I had read a large number of great Young Adult novels too. Because it would’ve turned my list into a Top 25 instead of a Top 5 I decided to create a separate list for Young Adult novels. I will admit that even though I read quickly I know there are several HUGE titles that I didn’t read last year like The Hate You Give, which were highly reviewed. I am only one person and still have a huge list of books I’d like to read and it keeps getting longer!  I do have it sitting on my shelf, as well as many others… I read and reviewed these books in 2017 regardless of the publishing date.

If you’d like to read my entire review of each book, please click the link of the title.

When by Victoria Laurie

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“There were many things I loved about this book. I loved how the author put everyone’s death date next to their name when they were introduced into the storyline. I loved her best friend Stubby (although hated his nickname), and his eternal optimism, even through some pretty horrible circumstances. I loved that Maddie, even against all odds-bullied, picked on and beat up, NEVER stopped going to school. I loved that the people who didn’t believe in her ended up caring for her…”

Warcross by Marie Lu

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“I do not play video games and was worried that I wouldn’t be able to get into this book because of that but I shouldn’t have worried. The world Marie Lu created was vivid, had amazing energy, and painted a 3-D picture for me to visualize and engage with. The games themselves were exciting, the action well written and Emika’s thought process as she deconstructed play exciting. I loved the game!”

Mask of Shadows by Linsey Miller

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“This was a great YA fantasy novel. The plot was original and the characters fascinating. All of the men and women who were auditioning as the next Opal wore masks and were given numbers as names creating gender ambiguity. So, even though they were men and women, they became five, four, and in Sal’s case, twenty-three…I liked this unique aspect of the story and started paying more attention to the plot based on the person. Not the sex of them.”

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

After reading Strange the Dreamer I was curious about this older series of Laini Taylor’s and boy was this first novel great!

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“I loved the mythology of this world, the city of Prague is magical in nature and was the perfect setting, and I fell immediately in love with Karou. Her story was pure fantasy and her love for Akiva overflowed. Their’s is a story I will read to the end.”

Flame in the Mist by Renee Ahdieh

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“This was a beautiful book to read and very easy to go all in emotionally. Who doesn’t want to root for a girl to be honored for her intellect, find true love and fight the bad guys? Right on!”

Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys

Salt to the Sea

“This book deserved all of the accolades and great reviews. At times the subject matter was horrifying and difficult to read, but there were a lot of great stories about everyday heroes too, and for me that made it a really well balanced book. If you like historical fiction, this is definitely worth your time.”

A Court of Wings and Ruin (A Court of Thorns and Roses #3) by Sarah J Maas

A Court of Wings Ruins

“It was hard to not read all of the reviews of this book before actually reading it myself. They were everywhere! All of my fellow bloggers gushed and sighed, exclaiming over Feyre and Rhys’s love story. Oh those Tamlin fans quickly became Tamlin haters, much preferring Feyre and Rhys. I don’t disagree, Tamlin has some serious control and anger issues, but I was happy to see that in A Court of Wings and Ruin, he was able to redeem himself, if only slightly. Rhys as Prince Charming is almost too good to be true, but the fairy tale prince continues his reign and can do no wrong in this book.”

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Illuminae

“I first listened to the audio book of Illuminae, and I have to say it was one of the best audio books I’ve ever heard. It was produced like a movie with different actors for all of the characters, mood music, sound effects, everything!  It was awesome!… Then I picked up the book. Illuminae takes reading a novel to the next level. It is part book, part graphic novel, and all fun! The story of Kady Grant and Ezra Mason is told through a series of emails, military diaries, memos and narrated videos. Don’t miss out on this one!”

A Study in Charlotte (Charlotte Holmes #1) by Brittany Cavallaro

A Study in Charlotte

“This book stayed true to the original Holmes and Watson formula. Two people who couldn’t be more different and become great friends, trusting each other over every other person in their lives. This series looks to do the same thing, but with a possible romantic twist. It was incredibly entertaining and at times laugh out loud funny, but at the same time made my heart twang with emotion. This novel hit all of my hot buttons and I loved it.”

The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

The Sun is Also

“Yes this book was sweet, thoughtful, funny and full of the innocence of young love, but there was a lot of weight to this book too. As an adult, I loved the hope and joy this book made me feel because at times I feel jaded and skeptical, but it also made me appreciate where I am in my own life and happy I am past the struggles of youth although I do still like reading about them.”

I didn’t put numbers next to these books because as I read them I thought, “This is the Best one Yet!” How can you rank each moment next to another?

Have you read any of these novels? Which one was your favorite? Did I miss a great one (Besides the Hate you Give!) that I need to put on my TBR? Let me know!

I’m looking forward to many more fabulous books in 2018!

Keep Reading, Happy New Year!

Deb

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This Chick Read: Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

Everything, Everything is a love story between a girl who can’t leave her home because the outside world may kill her and a boy named Olly who moves in next door. That is the simple version and it’s the truth, but this book has so much more. It’s about first love, taking chances and discovery. 

Surprisingly Maddy is very well adjusted. I mean, if I could die at any moment and my mom and my nurse were my closest friends I would be glued to my window watching the world outside my bubble.  Maddy seems to have come to grips with her situation. Until Olly moves in next door. I think what draws her to Olly was not his appearance, although he was cute, it was actually his circumstance. His father was an abusive drunk. When Maddy witnesses and hears that abuse I think it opens her eyes that other people’s lives may be worse than her own. 

Olly was every teenage girls dream boyfriend. He was cute, mysterious and sensitive. I, too would have risked my safe world to embrace all sorts of harmful bacteria and live in the moment with him.

Everything, Everything was not just a lighthearted teenage romance. Because of Maddy’s dangerous disease, every move she made was wrought with tension and even though you rooted for her to have a moment of happiness you hoped it wouldn’t kill her and that gave this romance an edge. There was a HUGE twist at the end of this book that added another dimension to the emotion in this story that you should not miss. ❤❤❤❤


Buy it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Kobo!

Copyright 2017 Deborah Kehoe A Chick Who Reads All Rights Reserved

This Chick’s Sunday Commentary: Authors could solve the worlds problems…

I love reading fiction for many different reasons; I can escape from reality, I can explore different lands, I can fall in love over and over again, I can learn new languages, I can have great sex, I can can fight oppression, and I can be a hero. The list goes on and on! If you follow my book reviews you know I like books where the underdog wins, women find the power within to beat bad odds, where “race issues” are played out between humans and elves-vampires and werewolves, where basically the world becomes a better place because people WANT to make it better in these books. Of course, there is always a happy ending, or at least a sequel where the characters I love will get to take that battle to the next level.

I love that these life themes are played out in Young Adult books, so girls can learn empowerment and boys can learn how to work with others to change the world for the better (Snow Like Ashes).

I love that romantic fantasy can be between two different races. One race who lives in the day and one in the night, and even though the darker race has large teeth and the lighter race is considered horrifyingly ugly because of the lightness of her skin, they still open people’s eyes to the love in their union. They set a good example for acceptance and unity (Eidolon).

I love that those in power can learn from the humanity in one individual, even if they are an alien,that makes them change their behavior towards an entire race (Star Nomad).

I also love that I can escape into a fantasy world where a small group of individuals battle against an egomaniacal President who is infected with a deadly virus and win that battle (Justice Ascending).

All of these themes, although played out in fiction, give me hope that the light of humanity exists. After all, these authors are writing about things that exist in our every day life- hatred, bigotry, love, war, friendship, honor, and ultimately the power of good people doing great things. These themes must have resonated because these authors are successful and fans buy their books in bundles!

I would like to make a suggestion on the next book our leader should read. Nicola Yoon could teach you about how deportation feels from a teenagers viewpoint in The Sun is Also a Star, or maybe you could learn compassion from a nice interracial love story set during the Civil Rights Movement in Alissa Cole’s Let it Shine. Really, I’d love it if he would read the moment in Rebecca Zanetti’s Mercury Striking when the virus takes hold of the President and he becomes a psychopath, there are some frightening similarities.

I guess what I’m trying to convey is that writers have been fighting and solving these real life themes for generations. The books I mention above are all books I’ve read recently, but you can find great ideas in the classics as well. Maybe what we need from our worlds leaders, besides the obvious things like compassion, intelligence, thoughtfulness, a good world view, etc. is also to be well read. Well read in Fantasy, Science Fiction, Romance, Young Adult novels, Mysteries-all of these genres, and others, have some great solutions to the problems our world is dealing with right now. You may have to look past the fangs to find them, but the solutions are in our fiction novels.

It’s something to think on-

Please click each book below to read my reviews on each, and to link to buy.

Deborah

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This Chick Read: The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

 This novel has been on my shelf for a couple of months and after the 10th appearance on a Best Of list, I was motivated to read it, finally. I found it to be  charming, sweet, funny, interesting and magical. Needless to say, I was not disappointed at all.

This book about two high school kids who meet by chance in New York put my own rather average adult life in perspective. As Daniel wondered about the chain of events that gave him the courage to approach Natasha, I thought about all of my own decisions that led to major events in my life. How if I had turned down a different road, said yes instead of no, or stayed home when I took a chance at something, my life could be completely different. our lives seem so insular, the tunnel vision makes it easy to miss signs that may influence our lives towards happiness, love, good fortune, bad fortune, death, etc.  That chance they took with each other, that made that one day so magical even though fictional, does give food for thought and helped me realize that every decision we make is important. You may think I am giving this book a little too much weight, but this is what I thought about as I finished reading this book. Especially with how the book ended with another chance meeting, fate dealing another hand.

Yes this book was sweet, thoughtful, funny and full of the innocence of young love, but there was a lot of weight to this book too. As an adult, I loved the hope and joy this book made me feel because at times I feel jaded and skeptical, but it also made me appreciate where I am in my own life and happy I am past the struggles of youth although I do still like reading about them. ❤❤❤❤❤


Buy it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Kobo!

Copyright 2017 Deborah Kehoe A Chick Who Reads All Rights Reserved