Around the Year in 52 Books discussion

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Archives > Read-a-Thon #3 – Recommend a Good One

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message 1: by Katie (new)

Katie | 2362 comments Read anything really awesome lately? One of those books you think everyone should read? Share it with the group! Because who isn’t looking for the next great read?

Or are you looking for a recommendation for a certain ATY topic or for another challenge? Or just a certain genre you’d like to read more of? If you’re looking for help, post your requests here.


message 2: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8323 comments Mod
I finished The Book of Essie by Meghan MacLean Weir a couple weeks ago, and it was the bright spot in a very dismal reading month. One of my only 5 star books of the summer! (Definitely not for people who are particularly fond of evangelical megachurches...)

I do have a question... I am one LGBTQ+ book short of my goal of reading 12 this year. What is the best LGBTQ+ book that you've read? I want to make sure I finish this goal on a great note! (My favorites have been The Book of Essie and They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera.)


message 3: by Katie (last edited Aug 30, 2018 05:06AM) (new)

Katie | 2362 comments I just checked out The Book of Essie a few days ago because of you! (Are you doing PopSugar, Emily? I think you are. If so, I could use this book for the Book recommended by someone doing the PopSugar challenge prompt.)


message 4: by Tracy, Constellation Mod (last edited Aug 30, 2018 05:56AM) (new)

Tracy (tracyisreading) | 2542 comments Mod
My favorite discoveries this year:
The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo
I was not planning on reading this at all EVER, and it has been probably my favorite book so far this year. Recommend it for fans of fast paced contemporary fiction with surprises to figure out.
This House is Haunted
This was my "Clue Weapon" book, so it was randomly chosen off a list because it had a candle stick on the cover....I ended up not being able to put this one down!! Recommended for fans of gothic prompts and ghost stories.
The Paper Menagerie and Other Stories
Total shock! 2 things I typically do NOT enjoy: sic-fi that involves space/robots/cyborgs; and short stories. I listened to Pam and this ended up being 5 stars for me. Loved it!! there is so much to think about with every story. Recommend it for people trying to get out of their comfort zone, sic-fi and short story fans, anyone who enjoys reading about Asian culture because there is so much of that here
Born a Crime: Stories From a South African Childhood
Listen on Audio. Perfect for memoir fans, people who love diverse reads...made me laugh and cry.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid This House is Haunted by John Boyne The Paper Menagerie and Other Stories by Ken Liu Born a Crime Stories From a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah


message 5: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8323 comments Mod
Katie, I'm doing a mini-PopSugar challenge, so it totally counts!


message 6: by Hilde (new)

Hilde (hilded) | 814 comments Emily wrote: "I finished The Book of Essie by Meghan MacLean Weir a couple weeks ago, and it was the bright spot in a very dismal reading month. One of my only 5 star books of t..."

I enjoyed Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit, which I read earlier this year. I have also only heard positive things about Giovanni's Room, but I haven't gotten to it myself yet.


message 7: by dalex (new)

dalex (912dalex) | 2095 comments I've read quite a few super awesome books in 2018. Here are a few recommendations by genre:

SF - end of the world: The Book of M by Peng Shepherd
(If another book tops this one as #1 for the year, I will be shocked. So so so good. All the stars and more stars.)

SF - space: An Unkindness of Ghosts by Rivers Solomon

SF - other: The Mad Scientist's Daughter by Cassandra Rose Clarke

Fantasy: The Traitor Baru Cormorant by Seth Dickinson

Lit fic: The House at the Edge of the World by Julia Rochester

Historical fic: West by Carys Davies


message 8: by Chrissy (last edited Aug 30, 2018 08:58AM) (new)

Chrissy | 934 comments Emily wrote: "What is the best LGBTQ+ book that you've read?"

I LOVED Peter Darling! One of my top books of the year.


message 9: by Tracy, Constellation Mod (new)

Tracy (tracyisreading) | 2542 comments Mod
Chrissy wrote: "Emily wrote: "What is the best LGBTQ+ book that you've read?"

I LOVED Peter Darling! One of my top books of the year."


Added this, I keep seeing ravings about it but this is the first time I've actually looked at the summary....What a freaking creative and brilliant concept!!


message 10: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8323 comments Mod
Ohhh that sounds excellent! I may save it for my Something Borrowed prompt for next year.


message 11: by Silvia (new)

Silvia Turcios | 1062 comments I recommed One of Us Is Lying, easy and interesting reading. Very enjoyable. And it fit in many AtY categories for this years: It was a 2017 Goodreads Choice Award, with the plot around many secrets, featuring a murder and the title is a whole sentence!


message 12: by Pam (new)

Pam (bluegrasspam) | 2786 comments Emily wrote: "What is the best LGBTQ+ book that you've read? ..."

I highly recommend The Heart's Invisible Furies!


Lisa (the.running.bookworm) My recommended reads....
Caraval Just finished this and found it amazing! did not want to put it down and can not wait to read the sequel (which is set up really well at the end )
Burial Rites Another brilliant read, and not one I probably would have picked up if it wasn't for this challenge.
Expecting Someone Taller Probably a lesser known book, but fantastic! I love Tom Holt's off the wall, crazy, random fantasy and this book does not disappoint!


message 14: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8323 comments Mod
Pam wrote: "Emily wrote: "What is the best LGBTQ+ book that you've read? ..."

I highly recommend The Heart's Invisible Furies!"


I didn't realize that that was an LGBTQ+ book! I'll have to add it.


message 15: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8323 comments Mod
Lisa wrote: "My recommended reads....
Caraval Just finished this and found it amazing! did not want to put it down and can not wait to read the sequel (which is set up really well at the end )
[..."


Lisa, I have had Burial Rites on my bookshelf for like three years.... I'm finally going to pick it up in September!


message 16: by Rachel (new)

Rachel A. (abyssallibrarian) | 2820 comments Bang by Barry Lyga.

Also The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo and Beartown were both unexpected favourites.


message 17: by Pam (new)

Pam (bluegrasspam) | 2786 comments Emily wrote: "Pam wrote: "Emily wrote: "What is the best LGBTQ+ book that you've read? ...."

I also recommend Annabel, which I just finished.The main character is a hermaphrodite. It's a beautifully written story! Also, if anyone is doing an Around the World Challenge or Across Canada, it works for the Newfoundland and Labrador Canadian province.


message 18: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8323 comments Mod
Pam wrote: "Emily wrote: "Pam wrote: "Emily wrote: "What is the best LGBTQ+ book that you've read? ...."

I also recommend Annabel, which I just finished.The main character is a hermaphrodite. I..."


This sounds so intriguing!


message 19: by Rachelnyc (new)

Rachelnyc | 943 comments I'll recommend a couple of recent reads that I haven't really heard talked about here.

My Dear Hamilton: A Novel of Eliza Schuyler Hamilton: Wife, Widow, and Warrior in Alexander Hamilton’s Quest for a More Perfect Union For fans of the Broadway musical or fans of historical fiction in general. The authors did a beautiful job of telling the story of Eliza and not only her relationship with Hamilton but her role pre-, during and post Revolution.

I keep saying I am done with WWII books but then I come across one with a unique perspective which is why Beneath a Scarlet Sky caught my attention. It is inspired by the life of Pino Lella who risked his life in many ways to help the Resistance in Italy.


message 20: by Chrissy (new)

Chrissy | 934 comments Rachelnyc wrote: "I'll recommend a couple of recent reads that I haven't really heard talked about here.

[book:My Dear Hamilton: A Novel of Eliza Schuyler Hamilton: Wife, Widow, and Warrior in Alexander Hamilton’s ..."


I have this on hold but keep putting it off because it won’t fill a prompt for me. I just need to get ahead by a week so I can squeeze it in! Good to know the wait will be worth it!


message 21: by Tracy, Constellation Mod (new)

Tracy (tracyisreading) | 2542 comments Mod
Emily wrote: "Pam wrote: "Emily wrote: "Pam wrote: "Emily wrote: "What is the best LGBTQ+ book that you've read? ...."

I also recommend Annabel, which I just finished.The main character is a herm..."


Emily have you read Middlesex yet??


message 22: by Pam (new)

Pam (bluegrasspam) | 2786 comments Does anyone have any recommendations for translated books in the following genres: sci-fi, horror, mystery, contemporary fiction, history or biography? I am doing a challenge where you select 16 of 22 genres. I have 3 left! For sci-fi and horror, I have options but I'll take any suggestions. Thanks!


message 23: by Tracy, Constellation Mod (last edited Aug 30, 2018 07:28PM) (new)

Tracy (tracyisreading) | 2542 comments Mod
Rachelnyc wrote: "I keep saying I am done with WWII books "


Same Rachel, but then theres always another good one that seems to come out. So many of my favorite books are WWII books... It's just a fascinating ( horrifying ) time in history.

I haven't read Beneath a Scarlet Sky yet, but its somewhere on my TBR... The Complete Maus was one of my favorites this year, I forgot to put it in my post earlier .

Others that come to mind are Skeletons at the Feast, Those Who Save Us, The Nightingale and Stones from the River. And for non- fiction I absolutely loved Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience and Redemption.


message 24: by Edie (new)

Edie | 983 comments Some books that I would recommend:
Killers of the Flower Moon
Bluebird, Bluebird was surprised by how much I liked this
The Fighter by Michael Farris Smith


message 25: by Pam (new)

Pam (bluegrasspam) | 2786 comments Two mid-grade WWII books that I recommend are:

We Will Not Be Silent: The White Rose Student Resistance Movement That Defied Adolf Hitler (non-fiction)
Shadow on the Mountain (fiction based on real events; set in Norway)


message 26: by Rachelnyc (new)

Rachelnyc | 943 comments Pam wrote: "Does anyone have any recommendations for translated books in the following genres: sci-fi, horror, mystery, contemporary fiction, history or biography? I am doing a challenge where you select 16 of..."

For contemporary fiction in translation, I am a big fan of Turkish author Orhan Pamuk. My favorites of his are My Name is Red and Snow. I also really liked Three Floors Up by Israeli author Eshkol Nevo.

Tracy, I know. I guess this can be said of other periods of history but it just seems like there is no end to the atrocities committed during that time. I need to read Unbroken and will check out Skeletons. The others you mentioned I've read or are on my TBR. Have you read Lilac Girls?


message 27: by Tracy, Constellation Mod (last edited Aug 30, 2018 08:05PM) (new)

Tracy (tracyisreading) | 2542 comments Mod
Pam wrote: "Two mid-grade WWII books that I recommend are:
"


Oh Pam, now you know I love mid-grade.....


Rachelnyc wrote: "Have you read Lilac Girls?"


Not yet 😩. Its on my list
Chris Bohjalian is one of my favorite authors and Stones From the River was an interesting take ( and an excellent book) on WWII because the main character is a dwarf.... I was on edge waiting for the Nazis to take her to the gas chambers.


message 28: by Pam (new)

Pam (bluegrasspam) | 2786 comments Thank you Rachel for the great suggestions! They are different original languages than the others I’ve read, for the challenge, so that’s perfect!


message 29: by Pam (new)

Pam (bluegrasspam) | 2786 comments Tracy- I am SO glad that you enjoyed Paper Menagerie and Other Stories! I’m not a big fan of short stories either but I do like soft sci-fi and fantasy. The way the author brought in the Asian cultural elements and included such diverse stories and settings is what set this book apart from other SF collections for me. It’s one of my all-time favorite books!


message 30: by Tracy, Constellation Mod (new)

Tracy (tracyisreading) | 2542 comments Mod
Pam wrote: "Tracy- I am SO glad that you enjoyed Paper Menagerie and Other Stories! I’m not a big fan of short stories either but I do like soft sci-fi and fantasy. The way the author brought in the Asian cult..."

😊 I'm so glad I read the whole thing!! Its on my favorites shelf for sure even though I still haven't decided which was my favorite story from the collection. For some reason the one that keeps coming to mind is "All the Flavors". It was just an incredible collection. I was so surprised by it. And THANK YOU for encouraging me to read it all, because it really was a gift :-)


message 31: by Jody (new)

Jody (jodybell) | 3468 comments Emily wrote: "What is the best LGBTQ+ book that you've read?"

Giovanni's Room by James Baldwin is incredible. It's short, so beautiful & so moving. Middlesex is a close second. They were both five star reads for me. More Than This is also excellent!


message 32: by dalex (new)

dalex (912dalex) | 2095 comments Emily wrote: "What is the best LGBTQ+ book that you've read? "

I read a ton of lgbtq books so I could give you a long list of recommendations. Are there any particular genres or styles or anything you're specifically looking for?

Also, you can often find a lgbtq book with just a bit of research. It's not always really obvious that a book is about a lgbtq character or that an author is lgbtq (John Boyne, for example).


message 33: by Joan (new)

Joan Barnett | 1672 comments Some of my favorite books from this year have been:

Wayward
The Last Town
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
Thirteen Reasons Why
Beartown
The Hate U Give
Ashley's War: The Untold Story of a Team of Women Soldiers on the Special Ops Battlefield
Ready Player One

These books brought out the most emotion in my while I was reading them. Ready Player One, Wayward and The Last Town were pretty suspenseful. Beartown brought out some anger. Simon brought out all kinds of feelings - laughter, anger and some happy thoughts. The Hate U Give I remember crying a lot. That book hit me in the gut as well as Thirteen Reasons Why. Ashley's War I learned a lot and it made me cry.


message 34: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (last edited Aug 31, 2018 07:44AM) (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8323 comments Mod
Joan wrote: "Some of my favorite books from this year have been:

Wayward
The Last Town
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
Thirteen Reasons Why
[bo..."


Joan, I've read almost all of those and they are all among my top favorites ever! We must have similar reading tastes.


message 35: by Joan (new)

Joan Barnett | 1672 comments Emily wrote: "Joan wrote: "Some of my favorite books from this year have been:

Wayward
The Last Town
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
[book:Thirteen Reasons Why|..."


I'll have to pay attention to what you are reading to see what I'll like then!!


message 36: by Kathy (new)

Kathy | 2484 comments Right now I'm reading The Heart's Invisible Furies by John Boyne and I'm loving it.


message 37: by Veronica (new)

Veronica | 808 comments I just finished Lab Girl and loved it. I also loved The Hate U Give when I read it earlier this year.


message 38: by Tracy, Constellation Mod (last edited Sep 03, 2018 10:11PM) (new)

Tracy (tracyisreading) | 2542 comments Mod
Pam wrote: "Does anyone have any recommendations for translated books in the following genres: sci-fi, horror, mystery, contemporary fiction, history or biography? I am doing a challenge where you select 16 of..."

Pam, for Contemporary Fiction: the translated book that I read this year was The Vegetarian. It is essentially a book about mental illness, a short quick read, but the reviews are mixed because of content. Some readers found it to be disturbing. Personally, I enjoyed the sheer craziness of it and immediately after I read it I gave it to a friend to read so that we could discuss and I could debrief. Although briefly graphic in some parts, I found the depths of the main characters mental illness to be very sad, and although I may have had some negative reactions to it, it certainly left me thinking for days, and maybe that is good writing?

Other translated books on my challenges for this year are Ring ( Horror, but I found it to be more of a mystery). The movie definitely scared me, the book did not. Some unlikeable male characters in this one, but I enjoyed comparing it to the movie ( movie won hands down)

Also Malice a mystery/thriller. I haven't read this one yet, its on my Book Riot plan, but several of my friends that read it gave it 4 star reviews.


message 39: by Katie (new)

Katie | 2362 comments Tracy reminded me. I read The Vegetarian as well, and didn't enjoy it, but I did read Human Acts by the same author and really enjoyed that one. So that's another option for a book in translation.


message 40: by Tracy, Constellation Mod (last edited Sep 04, 2018 06:54AM) (new)

Tracy (tracyisreading) | 2542 comments Mod
Katie wrote: "Tracy reminded me. I read The Vegetarian as well, and didn't enjoy it, but I did read Human Acts by the same author and really enjoyed that one. So that's another option for a book ..."

Im planning on Human Acts for next year.. forget which category i put it in, But I remember your review saying it was a much better book.


message 41: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8323 comments Mod
Tracy, I haven't read Middlesex yet, and it's just SO LONG that I think I'm going to hold off on it until next year. I do want to get to it, though, because I really liked The Virgin Suicides.

I'll probably end up reading either Giovanni's Room or The Heart's Invisible Furies! Thank you all for your recommendations!


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