Book Review

Halfway through 2016: My Top 10 Favorite Books

top 10 half

Needless to say, my heart will always belong to books.

*not that you’re surprised*

For my first bookish post, I’ll be showing you **some** of my favorite books that I’ve read since January 2016. Since we already reached half of the year, it’s safe to say that we could at least sort what’s YAY or NAY! Right?

Please take note that these are MY favorites. You may agree or disagree but we can always talk about it in the comment section. I’m always up for healthy discussions. 😉

Here we go…

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TOP 10 FAVORITE BOOKS AS OF JUNE 10, 2016

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  1. The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Safon

“Every book, every volume you see here, has a soul. The soul of the person who wrote it and of those who read it and lived and dreamed with it. Every time a book changes hands, every time someone runs his eyes down its pages, its spirit grows and strengthens.”

Reading it was one of the best literary decisions I made. It gave me different emotions that I didn’t regret feeling: loss, anger, sadness, pity, laughter, love and hope… Because ultimately, this is a book of hope. That no matter how long the road is, no matter what the obstacles are, better days will always come. I am not a big fan of joyous endings but this book was so overwhelming that as I turned the last page, I gave it a bittersweet smile for the journey I just had. It’s beautiful. No more words, this is simply a beautiful book. A must-read for fans of Historical Fiction or just anyone who would love a love story with a twist!

  1. The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

“Perhaps the greatest faculty our minds possess is the ability to cope with pain. Classic thinking teaches us of the four doors of the mind, which everyone moves through according to their need.

First is the door of sleep. Sleep offers us a retreat from the world and all its pain. Sleep marks passing time, giving us distance from the things that have hurt us. When a person is wounded they will often fall unconscious. Similarly, someone who hears traumatic news will often swoon or faint. This is the mind’s way of protecting itself from pain by stepping through the first door.

Second is the door of forgetting. Some wounds are too deep to heal, or too deep to heal quickly. In addition, many memories are simply painful, and there is no healing to be done. The saying ‘time heals all wounds’ is false. Time heals most wounds. The rest are hidden behind this door.

Third is the door of madness. There are times when the mind is dealt such a blow it hides itself in insanity. While this may not seem beneficial, it is. There are times when reality is nothing but pain, and to escape that pain the mind must leave reality behind.
Last is the door of death. The final resort. Nothing can hurt us after we are dead, or so we have been told.”

At first, I was having a hard time because it was intimidating but I took it as a challenge. AS the story went on, I was amazed on how it was intricately woven. There are lot to take in, but Rothfuss made sure that it will be read in a way that you just want to be a part of that world. Truly magical!

  1. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

“To be rather than to seem.”

‘The Night Circus’ is a story of two magicians, Celia and Marco, locked in unwilling battle that goes on for years. Unexpectedly, the two will do every power and magic tricks they have to not let any one of them lose…

I like the entirety of the book. How it was imaginatively written and how it affected me emotionally. It kept me engaged the whole time that I wanted to jump inside the pages and experience the Circus itself. It was, as everyone said, magical. It is a whimsical journey that I enjoyed. A lot. The story-telling was flawless and exceptional. This is actually the kind of book that I would love to see as a movie! And I would hop on to the next train and follow Le Cirque des Reves!

  1. A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

“If you speak the truth, you will be able to face whatever comes.”

It seemed like a children’s tale but it spoke so much truth about love, pain, loss and healing… It started with a boy named Conor who had nightmares where he found himself always talking to a “monster”. Little did he know, what was happening all along was a way to heal his broken wounds… How it ended was bittersweet. It taught Conor that letting go is not a weakness, it’s being strong enough to accept the things you cannot change.

It’s a great read to get you out of your reading slump. Easy but still a bit heavy. 😉 Patrick Ness never fails to amaze me!

  1. The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson

“Belief isn’t simply a thing for fair times and bright days… What is belief – what is faith – if you don’t continue in it after failure? Anyone can believe in someone, or something that always succeeds. But failure… Ah, now, that is hard to believe in, certainly and truly. Difficult enough to have value. Sometimes we just have to wait long enough then we find out why exactly it was that we kept believing. There’s always another secret.”

It’s a great fantasy book that not only delves into action but also with a good story line. It is a book with a heart, despite its aim to be fully fictional. The writing was great and exceptional. Sometimes I have a hard time reading high-fantasy books but this one is a winner!

  1. I Let You Go by Clare MacKintosh

“Nobody’s ever laid on their death bed wishing they had spent more time at work.”

At first, it was a typical narration. There was a grieving mother aka the woman who went away to ‘forget’, then there was a detective who also has personal dilemmas. See, it was simple. Until THE SECOND PART started… It was when I almost threw the book!!!  But it was frustrating in a good way!!! There were revelations that gave the book a major plot twist! And the author did it beautifully. How it was written and eventually concluded was a delight! It was, overall, a story of loss, grief, hope and new beginnings. It makes me feel good that I finished it.

  1. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

”Words can be like X-rays if you use them properly – they’ll go through anything. You read and you’re pierced.”

It has a thought-provoking theme that talks about a society and its flaws. It believes that being established means getting rid of all of the most unpleasant things in life and subsequently, life’s true pleasures. I was hooked because it has a message that you sometimes witness in the world today. It was like the opposite of ‘1984’ but I must say that I did like ‘1984’ better than ‘Brave New World’. Nevertheless, it’s a good ol’ read!

  1. The Mysterious Mr. Quin by Agatha Christie

“Is death the greatest evil that can happen to anyone?”

A collection of 12 short stories by the Queen of Crime, Agatha Christie. The book has one person that everyone wanted to know: Mr. Quin. Whoever or whatever this enigmatic man was, he played well in MY psyche. And Christie once again proved his prowess in creating a world where your imagination goes beyond the last page.

The stories may differ but I observed some underlying themes that made the book a whole: sanity, madness, suicide and ultimately…love. For me, I think Mr. Quin was a message from Agatha Christie saying: “We are all mad in love.”

  1. The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater

“Tell me, when you dream, do you dream of the stars?”

We all want a book that will leave a mark for a long time. This is that book. (Series, rather.) “The Raven King” is the last installment in “The Raven Cycleseries. It is one of those rare finds in a world where YA/fantasy genres are filled with romance-based stories. But make no mistake, this is a story of love – a love for your family, friends, enemies, strangers and adventures and myths all at once. I will not say anything else but if you haven’t read this series, are you nuts?! Get it. Read it. Now.

And I’d like to say Thank You to Maggie Stiefvater for creating this marvelous and magical world. I will miss Blue and her Raven boys, but I am glad that the story ended in the best possible way. 

  1. A Little Life by HanyaYanagihara

“But it was true that for the first time, he was able to comprehend that the people he had grown to trust might someday betray him anyway, and that as disappointing as it might be, it was inevitable as well, and that life would keep propelling him steadily forward, because for everyone who might fail him in some way, there was at least one person who never would.”

It revolves around 4 college buddies who became lifetime friends! All the ups and downs and drama of their lives are shown and written in a beautiful, beautiful writing style. I won’t really tell you anything about the story because I WANT YOU TO READ IT but let me tell you that this book “fictionally destroyed” me in a way that I could never forget. The characters are like real-life people! Flawed, messed up but surviving in the best (or worst) way they could. It’s so beautiful yet so painful. Just. Brilliant! Overall, it is a story about friendship that stands the test of time.

It’s an intimidating book but trust me, it’s totally worth your time!

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As you can see above, my list varies from YA to classics to crime fiction to fantasy. I’m pretty much into anything as long as it tickles my fancy. Though, I could say that psychological crime fiction and YA would be my top favorites.

I hope you liked my list! And feel free to comment down your thoughts or questions or reactions…

I would also love to know YOUR TOP 10 favorites as well! 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

Always,

abeer

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6 Comments

  • Reply
    Diana
    June 12, 2016 at 8:03 pm

    Thank you very much for your bookish! I want to read them all, but as you can see I can’t buy them because they are not in my country and from websites are expensive. Hope I can find them on pdf or something haha. But I like Agatha Christie, I readed some of her books because are translated into my language and I could find them.
    Hope you’ll read my comment and give me some advice how can I read those books! 😄

    • Reply
      lookingforabura
      June 14, 2016 at 12:00 pm

      Hi! 🙂 Glad that you liked it! I suggest you can avail it thru e-books? Or look for Libraries near you. I HIGHLY DISCOURAGE downloading the books from illegal site. 🙂

  • Reply
    Resh Susan
    June 13, 2016 at 9:23 am

    Abeer!! How lovely. I was off Insta for a few days and even though I saw the post I couldn’t check it out earlier. I LOVE your website. The design is absolutely gorgeous. Great list btw. Yes yes, I remember how much you recommended Shadow of the wind and I still havent read it yet. SIgh.

    • Reply
      lookingforabura
      June 14, 2016 at 12:01 pm

      Hi Resh!

      Thank you. 🙂 I guess that’s why I don’t see much of your posts! Oh yes, pls read it sooooooooon!!!

  • Reply
    Sanya
    August 24, 2016 at 5:44 am

    I love how you said “fictionally destroyed” you about A Little Life. I have recommended this book to so many people with a very similar disclaimer. It is hands down my FAVORITE book I have ever read but it literally killed a part of me. It took from me just as much as I took from it – if that makes sense. I am obsessed and I can’t stop thinking about it. Also mildly sad that it is being made in to a short series for TV(?) I think – I don’t want to watch it or even know the characters so it can’t ruin it for me!

    • Reply
      lookingforabura
      August 24, 2016 at 6:27 am

      I know exactly how you feel! This book is just so much more!!! It’s sad but beautiful but it will destroy you at the same time. I love it when books do that to me!!! It’s magical, that feeling.

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