As can be seen below, I don’t give out 5 stars easily, and because of it I don’t often get that many a year. For me to give a book a 5 star rating usually means that it’s outstanding compared to others in the same genre. As well as there is a high chance that I might read it again. My 5 star friends are also the books I hype about, ask friends to read, and just can’t stop thinking about.
2019 was great year for me, insofar that I found some new authors to love and adore. I read a couple books that might just be the best I ever read. And I love that I keep on switching up genres which is a great way of keeping book slumps at bay.
My 5 star books of 2019
My 5 star books of 2019
by Colleen Hoover
Regretting You was one of the biggest surprise hits for me this year. Not only because it’s from an author I rarely read, and I had no expectations whatsoever about this book. But also because how well it was written, including a brilliant plot. And the way it touched me was so much more than I could have ever expected. Regretting You was a deeply moving novel, that I had a hard time putting it down.
Morgan Grant and her sixteen-year-old daughter, Clara, would like nothing more than to be nothing alike.
Morgan is determined to prevent her daughter from making the same mistakes she did. By getting pregnant and married way too young, Morgan put her own dreams on hold. Clara doesn’t want to follow in her mother’s footsteps. Her predictable mother doesn’t have a spontaneous bone in her body.
With warring personalities and conflicting goals, Morgan and Clara find it increasingly difficult to coexist. The only person who can bring peace to the household is Chris—Morgan’s husband, Clara’s father, and the family anchor. But that peace is shattered when Chris is involved in a tragic and questionable accident. The heartbreaking and long-lasting consequences will reach far beyond just Morgan and Clara.
While struggling to rebuild everything that crashed around them, Morgan finds comfort in the last person she expects to, and Clara turns to the one boy she’s been forbidden to see. With each passing day, new secrets, resentment, and misunderstandings make mother and daughter fall further apart. So far apart, it might be impossible for them to ever fall back together.
(Game Changers #2)
by Rachel Reid
This one was one of the BEST enemies to lovers and MM books I read this year. The author is a new to me writer, but the way she structured this book completely enthralled me. The book covers 10 years of their long distance “relationship”. It’s quite epic in the way it is written. Forbidden in more than one way. Secretive. Sexy. It had everything I like about this trope. But it’s not tender or romantic – it’s raw, and in your face passionate.
Nothing interferes with Shane Hollander’s game—definitely not the sexy rival he loves to hate.
Pro hockey star Shane Hollander isn’t just crazy talented, he’s got a spotless reputation. Hockey is his life. Now that he’s captain of the Montreal Voyageurs, he won’t let anything jeopardize that, especially the sexy Russian whose hard body keeps him awake at night.
Boston Bears captain Ilya Rozanov is everything Shane’s not. The self-proclaimed king of the ice, he’s as cocky as he is talented. No one can beat him—except Shane. They’ve made a career on their legendary rivalry, but when the skates come off, the heat between them is undeniable. When Ilya realizes he wants more than a few secret hookups, he knows he must walk away. The risk is too great.
As their attraction intensifies, they struggle to keep their relationship out of the public eye. If the truth comes out, it could ruin them both. But when their need for each other rivals their ambition on the ice, secrecy is no longer an option…
Sweep of the Blade
(Innkeeper Chronicles, #4)
by Ilona Andrews
My favorite book of this series. By far. I was a bit shocked by how much I loved Maud’s story. I loved it so much that I have read it already twice since it was released in July. It’s a space adventure, action packed, featuring a strong kick ass heroine, that has to compensate being the only human on a vampire planet by being smart, strong, and always aware of her short comings. Maud is one of my most favorite female action characters, and I can see rereading her story multiple times in the future.
Maud Demille was a daughter of Innkeepers. She knew that a simple life wasn’t in the cards, but she never anticipated what Fate would throw at her.
Once a wife to a powerful vampire knight, Maud and her daughter, Helen, had been exiled for the sins of her husband to the desolate planet of Karhari. Karhari killed her husband, and Maud had spent a year and a half avenging his debts. But now all the debts are paid. Rescued by her sister Dina, Maud had swore off all things vampire. Except she met Arland, the Marshal of House Krahr. One thing led to another and he asked for her hand in marriage. She declined.
Try as she might, she can’t just walk away from Arland. It doesn’t help that being human is a lot harder for Maud than being a vampire.
To sort it all out, she accepts his invitation to visit his home planet. House Krahr is a powerful vampire House, and Maud knows that a woman who turned down the proposal from its most beloved son wouldn’t get a warm reception. But Maud Demille never shied from a fight and House Krahr may soon discover that there is more to this human woman than they ever thought possible.
Rock Bottom Girl
by Lucy Score
Loved this rom-com so much that I’ve read it twice this year, and both time it was an outstanding novel. Down on her luck, in her late thirties, temporarily taking over the position as PE teacher and girl soccer coach – which of course is the reason for numerous LOL moments. The author has a wonderful way of keeping the balance of being funny without overdoing it, or sliding into the embarrassing area. Besides it being a romance it’s also a great sports underdog story which are kinda my favorites.
“You may be faking the relationship, but you’re not faking the orgasms.”
Downsized, broke, and dumped, 38-year-old Marley sneaks home to her childhood bedroom in the town she couldn’t wait to escape twenty years ago. Not much has changed in Culpepper. The cool kids are still cool. Now they just own car dealerships and live in McMansions next door. Oh, and the whole town is still talking about that Homecoming she ruined her senior year.
Desperate for a new start, Marley accepts a temporary teaching position. Can the girl banned from all future Culpepper High Homecomings keep the losing-est girls soccer team in school history from killing each other and prevent carpal tunnel in a bunch of phone-clutching gym class students? Maybe with the help of Jake Weston, high school bad boy turned sexy good guy.
When the school rumor mill sends Marley to the principal’s office to sign an ethics contract, the tattooed track coach, dog dad, and teacher of the year becomes her new fake boyfriend and alibi—for a price. The Deal: He’ll teach her how to coach if she teaches him how to be in a relationship. Who knew a fake boyfriend could deliver such real orgasms? But it’s all temporary. The guy. The job. The team. There’s too much history. Rock bottom can’t turn into a foundation for happily ever after. Can it?
The Giver of Stars
by Jojo Moyes
Wow this book caught me by surprise. I’m not a typical historical fiction reader, I’m also not a huge fan of the author – BUT this book is an amazing story. Based on facts, on history, the story is about a group of wonderful strong and charismatic women, that stood strong during a time when men had the say. It’s an uplifting story, with multiple happy endings, and a story that will stay with me for years.
Alice Wright marries handsome American Bennett Van Cleve hoping to escape her stifling life in England. But small-town Kentucky quickly proves equally claustrophobic, especially living alongside her overbearing father-in-law. So when a call goes out for a team of women to deliver books as part of Eleanor Roosevelt’s new traveling library, Alice signs on enthusiastically.
The leader, and soon Alice’s greatest ally, is Margery, a smart-talking, self-sufficient woman who’s never asked a man’s permission for anything. They will be joined by three other singular women who become known as the Packhorse Librarians of Kentucky.
What happens to them–and to the men they love–becomes an unforgettable drama of loyalty, justice, humanity and passion. These heroic women refuse to be cowed by men or by convention. And though they face all kinds of dangers in a landscape that is at times breathtakingly beautiful, at others brutal, they’re committed to their job: bringing books to people who have never had any, arming them with facts that will change their lives.
Headstrong Like Us
(Like Us, #6)
by Krista Ritchie
I’m a big Marrow fan, Maximoff and Farrow are one of my most favorite MM couples, and getting a book about their wedding was like a bonus on an otherwise already amazing trilogy. This book is just one book in an epic family saga that is now in its second generation. I’m obsessed with them all, and have reread many of the books over the years. I have only a couple series that I love and adore – this is one of them.
You’re cordially invited to the wedding of Maximoff Hale & Farrow Keene, and according to Celebrity Crush—the ceremony for this American prince and his tattooed bodyguard is going to be the event of the century.
There will be no wedding crashers.
Including but not limited to: hateful people, rabid fans, nosy paparazzi, and other so-called media.
There will be no drama.
None whatsoever. Because when you put three famous families and their hot bodyguards together, nothing will go down.
There will be no fighting.
No brawls, fists flying, verbal slingshots, or rifts that tear into craters. Lovers only!
Everything will be perfect.
Nothing will go amiss during the happiest, most anticipated occasion of the year. But then again…
They don’t call it the Hale Curse for nothing.
Call Me By Your Name
by André Aciman
This book will probably go down as the most impactful story for me this year. I devoured this book/audiobook and afterwards watched the movie and cried buckets. I’ve never been touched by a monologue like I was moved when the father gives his bisexual son a talk that just blew my mind. The book or the movie should be on anyone’s MUST READ/WATCH list. I was late to the game since the book released in 2007, but the impact it had on me was timeless. It’s an all time favorite book for sure. No review – couldn’t find the words to describe how much this book meant to me.
Call Me by Your Name is the story of a sudden and powerful romance that blossoms between an adolescent boy and a summer guest at his parents’ cliff-side mansion on the Italian Riviera. Unprepared for the consequences of their attraction, at first each feigns indifference. But during the restless summer weeks that follow, unrelenting buried currents of obsession and fear, fascination and desire, intensify their passion as they test the charged ground between them. What grows from the depths of their spirits is a romance of scarcely six weeks’ duration and an experience that marks them for a lifetime. For what the two discover on the Riviera and during a sultry evening in Rome is the one thing both already fear they may never truly find again: total intimacy.
The Best Thing
by Mariana Zapata
Not all of her books work for me, that became clear after I didn’t like her last two books, but this one was right up my alley. Single mom, adorable child, swoon Australian rugby player and the author’s signature slow burn – made for one entertaining package. Oh and let’s not forget the most awesomest grandpa EVER!! There was so many great things packed into this book – no wonder it’s a new favorite of mine.
Some things are easily forgiven. Other things… not so much.
Lenny DeMaio made herself a promise: she was done.
Done thinking about him.
Done worrying about him.
Done reaching out to a man who clearly didn’t want to be found.
Too bad no one gave Jonah Collins the memo.
The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo
by Taylor Jenkins Reid
This was only my second book by TJR, but the story is worthy of an Oscar. Complex and fascinating characters, and a heroine that unapologetically lived her live her way. Strong, smart, but also ruthless when needed – not many women can pull that off. The story is epic in its complexity. And just unforgettable thanks to none other than Evelyn herself.
Aging and reclusive Hollywood movie icon Evelyn Hugo is finally ready to tell the truth about her glamorous and scandalous life. But when she chooses unknown magazine reporter Monique Grant for the job, no one is more astounded than Monique herself. Why her? Why now? Monique is not exactly on top of the world. Her husband has left her, and her professional life is going nowhere. Regardless of why Evelyn has selected her to write her biography, Monique is determined to use this opportunity to jumpstart her career.
Summoned to Evelyn’s luxurious apartment, Monique listens in fascination as the actress tells her story. From making her way to Los Angeles in the 1950s to her decision to leave show business in the ’80s, and, of course, the seven husbands along the way, Evelyn unspools a tale of ruthless ambition, unexpected friendship, and a great forbidden love. Monique begins to feel a very real connection to the legendary star, but as Evelyn’s story near its conclusion, it becomes clear that her life intersects with Monique’s own in tragic and irreversible ways.
I love Tijan’s writing, but this one is in a different class of its own. This story has depth. Emotions that go beyond ANGST. A heroine that is more than what she seems. Probably the author’s most mature work yet, not only in story but also writing. I was impressed by the writing. Delighted by how different the story felt. And just amazed by it all. I think the heroine is the author’s best one yet, because her complex personality is one of a kind, and makes this book a standout.
I asked for his criteria for bed buddies-that’s the PG version.
He swore at me and said he didn’t do groupies. And just like that, our friendship was off to a great start.
Reese Forster was the starting point guard for the Seattle Thunder.
Gorgeous. Cocky. Loved by the nation.
He’s also attending preseason basketball training camp where I used to work.
Correction: where I work again, because I was fired from my last job.
And I might have a tiny bit of baggage, but that’s normal. Right?
Reese and I shouldn’t have become friends. We shouldn’t have become roommates.
And we really shouldn’t have started sleeping together … (Except we did.)
I’m adorably psychotic. He’s in the NBA.
This is not a disaster waiting to happen, at all.
by Beth O’Leary
This one is probably the best debut novel I read this year. The Flatshare was different, not only because of the plot, but also the way one of the main characters was written. It was sweet, funny, heart-warming, just one of those feel good novels that bring a smile to my face. Great writing, wonderful supporting characters and a couple sub plots that made reading this book such a joy. Finding new authors to love each year is my favorite thing to do, and when a hyped debut novel like The Flatshare delivers it’s like the icing on the cake.
Tiffy and Leon share a flat
Tiffy and Leon share a bed
Tiffy and Leon have never met…
Tiffy Moore needs a cheap flat, and fast. Leon Twomey works nights and needs cash. Their friends think they’re crazy, but it’s the perfect solution: Leon occupies the one-bed flat while Tiffy’s at work in the day, and she has the run of the place the rest of the time.
But with obsessive ex-boyfriends, demanding clients at work, wrongly imprisoned brothers and, of course, the fact that they still haven’t met yet, they’re about to discover that if you want the perfect home you need to throw the rulebook out the window…
Daisy Jones & The Six
by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Whereas The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo deserved an oscar for its story, Daisy Jones & The Six deserved an Oscar for its execution. It was by far the best executed audiobook I read in a long time. Writing such a compelling story in interview format requires SKILLS. I was hooked to it, completely enthralled by the characters, and pulled in by the story. This book has it all. It’s different. Compelling. Fascinating. So realistic that I actually googled the Daisy Jones & The Six, expecting it to be based on fact. That is SKILL right there.
Everyone knows Daisy Jones & The Six: The band’s album Auroracame to define the rock ‘n’ roll era of the late seventies, and an entire generation of girls wanted to grow up to be Daisy. But no one knows the reason behind the group’s split on the night of their final concert at Chicago Stadium on July 12, 1979 . . . until now.
Daisy is a girl coming of age in L.A. in the late sixties, sneaking into clubs on the Sunset Strip, sleeping with rock stars, and dreaming of singing at the Whisky a Go Go. The sex and drugs are thrilling, but it’s the rock ‘n’ roll she loves most. By the time she’s twenty, her voice is getting noticed, and she has the kind of heedless beauty that makes people do crazy things.
Also getting noticed is The Six, a band led by the brooding Billy Dunne. On the eve of their first tour, his girlfriend Camila finds out she’s pregnant, and with the pressure of impending fatherhood and fame, Billy goes a little wild on the road.
Daisy and Billy cross paths when a producer realizes that the key to supercharged success is to put the two together. What happens next will become the stuff of legend.
The making of that legend is chronicled in this riveting and unforgettable novel, written as an oral history of one of the biggest bands of the seventies. Taylor Jenkins Reid is a talented writer who takes her work to a new level with Daisy Jones & The Six, brilliantly capturing a place and time in an utterly distinctive voice.
by Michelle Obama
I don’t often read memoirs or biographies, but I make exceptions if it’s about a person I admire or that speaks to me. Michelle Obama’s Becomgin was one I gladly listened to. The audiobook was narrated by the author herself and I felt through the entire 20 hours that it took me to listen to this book as if the author was sitting across from me chatting a night away. The book gave me wonderful glimpses into her childhood, but most interesting to me her life int he WH.
In a life filled with meaning and accomplishment, Michelle Obama has emerged as one of the most iconic and compelling women of our era. As First Lady of the United States of America—the first African American to serve in that role—she helped create the most welcoming and inclusive White House in history, while also establishing herself as a powerful advocate for women and girls in the U.S. and around the world, dramatically changing the ways that families pursue healthier and more active lives, and standing with her husband as he led America through some of its most harrowing moments. Along the way, she showed us a few dance moves, crushed Carpool Karaoke, and raised two down-to-earth daughters under an unforgiving media glare.
In her memoir, a work of deep reflection and mesmerizing storytelling, Michelle Obama invites readers into her world, chronicling the experiences that have shaped her—from her childhood on the South Side of Chicago to her years as an executive balancing the demands of motherhood and work, to her time spent at the world’s most famous address. With unerring honesty and lively wit, she describes her triumphs and her disappointments, both public and private, telling her full story as she has lived it—in her own words and on her own terms. Warm, wise, and revelatory, Becoming is the deeply personal reckoning of a woman of soul and substance who has steadily defied expectations—and whose story inspires us to do the same.
The Rosie Result
(Don Tillman, #3)
by Graeme Simsion
I’ve loved this trilogy ever since a friend introduced me to the audiobook. And even though the second book wasn’t that great I was incredibly excited for this conclusion, and was even more excited when I fell in love with Don and his family and had the best time reading this last installment. Don is probably one of the most unique romantic heroes. On the spectrum, his personality is intriguing, hilarious at times and makes me laugh out loud. I really enjoy him the way eh is. Blunt, straight forward, his no-nonsense attitude clicked with me immediately. In a sea of heroes that have become copies of each other – Don will always stand out.
I was standing on one leg shucking oysters when the problems began…
Don and Rosie are back in Melbourne after a decade in New York, and they’re about to face their most important project.
Their son, Hudson, is having trouble at school: his teachers say he isn’t fitting in with the other kids. Meanwhile, Rosie is battling Judas at work, and Don is in hot water after the Genetics Lecture Outrage. The life-contentment graph, recently at its highest point, is curving downwards.
For Don Tillman, geneticist and World’s Best Problem-Solver, learning to be a good parent as well as a good partner will require the help of friends old and new.
It will mean letting Hudson make his way in the world, and grappling with awkward truths about his own identity.
And opening a cocktail bar.
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What’s on your BEST OF 2019 list?
My 5 star books of 2019