Another year has nearly come to an end – that can only mean one thing! A round-up of my Best and Worst books of 2018!
I will also be awarding my Best Fiction and Best YA Fiction Awards for 2018! Plus, because I’ve expanded my reading range this year, I can add another category this year: Best Graphic Novel!
Unlike last year, where I struggled to keep the ‘Best of’ category to only 5 and struggled to fill my ‘Worst of’ list, I had no trouble this year! However, I’ve included a couple of titles in ‘Disappointing’ and ‘Surprising’ lists, because there were a couple of those this year!
Would you prefer to watch this instead? Check out my YouTube video below!
OK, so a few rules for how books end up on these lists and how they can get awards:
- To end up in the ‘Best of’ or ‘Worst of’ lists, I have to have read the book in 2018, it does not have to have been published in 2018.
- However, to receive a ‘Best Award’ for 2018 the book has to have been published in 2018.
- I’m calling this the Best and Worst of 2018, but my ‘bookish’ years start and stop around Christmas time! This is because I travel home for the holiday season and I focus on family at this time. So any books that I’ve read between mid-December 2017 and mid-December 2018 are what count for the ‘Best of’ and ‘Worst of’ lists.
So, let’s get started on the Best and Worst books of 2018! These are in no particular order:
My Best reads of 2018
Jack of Hearts (and other parts) by Lev A.C. Rosen – I am so happy that I’ve read Jack of Hearts! I only wish it was around when I was a teenager! It’s 100% the sex-ed class you never got but wish you did! The sex is graphic, but never gratuitous and it’s real, and raw. The story is OK, if a little underdeveloped in places, but all-in-all, Jack of Hearts is an incredible book that should be read by everyone, if for nothing else but the positive sex-talk!
Renegades by Marissa Meyer – Marissa Meyer is an auto-buy author for me, and I had high hopes for Renegades. Luckily for me, I got what I hoped for! Is it cheesy? Sure, but is it well-written, has a great range of characters who have room for exceptional growth in the sequel and some good action sequences? Absolutely! I’m really excited to see where Nova’s character will go and I love the powers that many of the characters have! I’m really looking forward to the sequel!
Legendary by Stephanie Garber – This book did something I never expected it to do – it really surprised me! I mean, really surprised me. I left Caraval feeling pretty indifferent to the then upcoming sequel, Legendary. I knew I was going to buy it, but I never expected to love it. Legendary had me hooked pretty much from page 1. We get a lot more information on the characters, the story is incredibly compelling and the suspense is real. I’m also total mush for Dante now. Absolute book boyfriend! I am so antsy waiting for the final part of this trilogy, I really can’t wait to see where it goes!
The Chalk Man by C. J. Tudor – So, as some of you may know, I’m relatively new to the crime genre, but I’ve read a fair few throughout 2018 and The Chalk Man still stands head and shoulders above them all! It’s twisted and intriguing, dark and inviting all at the same time! It’s made even more impressive by the fact that this was C. J. Tudor’s debut novel! So if you’re after something dark and a little bit fucked up, this is for you! The writing is incredible and the pacing is fantastic.
The Fates Divide by Veronica Roth – I’ve previously admitted that I thought Roth was a bit of a Hack for her Divergent series, and Carve the Mark proved me wrong. The Fates Divide however has proven that Carve The Mark was not a fluke and that Roth has really come in to her own as a writer. The theme of duality in this book was expertly crafted and I loved that the characters were given more attention and fully fleshed out! The plot twists were great and despite having a high page count, the pacing was brilliant.
Sadie by Courtney Summers – Sadie was a great book, and one of the last books that I read in 2018. Sadie was a fast read, but it dealt with some really heavy subject matter. I liked it, but I felt it was lacking something that I can’t quite put my finger on. I wish we got a little bit more than what we got, but it was still an excellent read.
And now, again in no particular order (except the first one, that is the WORST book of 2018):
My Worst Reads of 2018
War Storm by Victoria Aveyard – Big surprise, another of Aveyard’s books ended up in the ‘Worst of’ pile, let me put on my shocked face. I’m not wasting any more time on this hack or her books. This book is shit. You can read my review on it here, or you can check out my YouTube rant on it if you’d like! Urgh. But just in case I’ve not made myself clear: THIS IS THE WORST BOOK OF 2018!
Part of your World by Liz Braswell – This is another book that I have strong feelings about. I usually love re-imaginings – it’s what attracts me to Marissa Meyer’s work. But this is awful. Part of your World is bad fan-fiction at best and an awful, intentional mistreatment of established characters and stories at worst. Braswell takes classic and well-loved characters and destroys them. She completely changes them and warps them into an unrecognizable husk and then throws them through an uninspiring story.
See What I Have Done by Sarah Schmidt – How do you take a really interesting, unsolved true-crime event and make it flat, dull and boring? Ask Sarah Schmidt because that’s what she did in See What I have Done. The pacing in this book was like walking through tar, and I genuinely feel bad that my mum spent her hard-earned money buying this book as a gift for me. At least the edition I have is pretty…
The Cruel Prince by Holly Black – Every now and then a book comes along that makes you wonder “did I read the same book that everyone else did?!” because your opinion is drastically different to what everyone else thinks of it, for better or worse. This is the case for The Cruel Prince by Holly Black. I don’t understand how this underdeveloped, trite book full of boring tropes and unlikable characters not only got the hype it did, but lived up to it in some people’s eyes. It baffles the mind completely. It’s boring and reads like a draft.
Nowhere Else But Here by Rachel Cotton – This was a bit of a flat disappointment. The book doesn’t really go anywhere or do anything. The characters have no motivation for doing anything, and everything is kinda ‘insta-love, total young teenage girls’s daydream’ and it’s just…bad. The main character also doesn’t act her age either and is one of the most irritating protagonists I’ve had to read about. I’m not even sure who Nowhere Else But Here is aimed at – it’s clearly too young for older readers and it just doesn’t seem to fit with younger readers either.
The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock by Imogen Hermes Gowar – This is another book that got a lot of hype and I don’t understand why. It takes an awfully long time to achieve nothing. The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock is beautifully written, but I think it has delusions of grandeur. It made it out of the ‘Worst of’ list, but just by the skin of its teeth.
Disappointing Reads of 2018
These books weren’t bad enough to make it to the ‘Worst of’ list and not even the ‘Dishonourable Mention’ – but whilst they were good, they were disappointing reads for one reason or another:
Spare and Found Parts– Sarah Maria Griffin
Number One Chinese Restaurant by Lillian Li
Surprising Reads of 2018
These books weren’t good enough to make it to the ‘Best of’ list and not quite the ‘Honourable Mention’ – but they surprised me by being better than I expected for one reason or another:
Meg– Steve Alten
Sheets by Brenna Thummler
The Fourth Closet by Scott Cawthon & Kira Breed-Wrisley
The ‘Best of 2018’ AWARDS
I’ve read, enjoyed, hated and reviewed many genres of books this year, and I feel like I’ve read enough of an additional genre to add it to the awards section! I’ve now added Best Graphic Novel to the awards categories! I’m super happy because this was on e of my goals for 2018!
Once again, this year presented a clear winner for each category!
I am so happy to award my Best Fiction Award 2018 to… The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor!
For me, there was one obvious choice for my Best YA Fiction Award 2018 and that is… Legendary by Stephanie Garber
And introducing my new award! The winner of my Best Graphic Novel Award 2018 goes to… Skin & Earth by Lights! (The collected Volume 1 was published this year, which is what I’m counting for this award!)
Congratulations and thank you for being awesome!
Well, that’s it for 2018!
I look forward to seeing you all in 2019, because, as always, as there are many, many books to read and review!
Thank you for joining me on this journey, and I hope you’ll stick with me for 2019!
Happy New Year everyone!
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