The “mid-year book freakout” tag has been going around the interwebzz for a few years now, and just like last time (and the year before) we decided to join in the fun.
1. Best Book We’ve Read So Far
KIM – Piranesi, Susanna Clarke.
TANYA PATRICE – I can’t choose between The Violin Conspiracy, Brendan Slocumb and The Last House on Needless Street, Catriona Ward. Both are fantastic – very different books – but both have stayed with me long after reading them. The Violin Conspiracy is about a stolen violin and The Last House on Needless Street is about a stolen child.
2. Best Sequel Read So Far
KIM – The City (Scary Stories for Young Foxes #2), Christian McKay Heidicker.
TANYA PATRICE – Take a Hint, Dani Brown (The Brown Sisters #2), Talia Hibbert is the follow-up to Get a Life Chloe Brown, and it’s just as good. Each book in the series follows one of the 3 Brown sisters and the ridiculous romantic exploits they find themselves in. I didn’t read the books in order and didn’t have a problem, although it probably does flow a little better if you do.
3. New Release We Haven’t Read Yet, But Want To
KIM – Eclipse the Moon (Hunt the Stars #2), Jessie Mihalik. Pre-ordered this baby!
TANYA PATRICE – Looking through My #20BooksofSummer, I have Gwendy’s Final Task, Stephen King and Richard Chizmar on the list. It’s the 3rd and final novella in the series.
4. Biggest Disappointment
KIM – Harrow the Ninth, Tamsyn Muir. I loved Gideon the Ninth and was so pumped to jump back into this world. Unfortunately Harrow was rambly and confusing and I just couldn’t get into it. I also just didn’t love the personality of Harrow as much as I loved Gideon.
TANYA PATRICE – My Heart is a Chainsaw, Stephen Graham Jones. This book won a 2021 Bram Stoker Award for Best Novel and a 2022 Locus Award for Best Horror Novel, and I couldn’t even finish it!
5. Biggest Surprise
KIM – Razorblade Tears, S.A. Cosby. This is heavy on the violence and I didn’t expect to get the feels so hard while reading it. There are a lot of reflective moments throughout.
TANYA PATRICE – I didn’t expect that 6 months into the year, The Violin Conspiracy, Brendan Slocumb, which I read in January, would be my top fave. It’s by a new author, and I didn’t think a story about a stolen violin would have so much depth.
6. Most Beautiful Book Cover So Far This Year
KIM – A Psalm for the Wild Built, Becky Chambers.
TANYA PATRICE – Firekeeper’s Daughter, Angeline Boulley. Unfortunately I think the cover is better than the book turned out to be a “Did Not Finish” for me.
7. Best Audiobook Narration
KIM – Legendborn, Tracy Deonn narrated by Joniece Abbott-Pratt
TANYA PATRICE – Apples Never Fall, Liane Moriarty. Narrated by Caroline Lee. The Delaney family is so dramatic – and the audiobook narrator captured the humor, the characters and the essence of the book perfectly. There were many different points of view and unbelievably, only one audiobook narrator – but you would never know it. There was not a minute where I was confused by who was who as the narrator breathed the life and personality into the characters.
8. Shortest Book
KIM – Between the World and Me, Ta-Nahesi Coates (152 pages).
TANYA PATRICE – The Empress of Salt and Fortune, Nghi Vo (119 pages). I thought it was pretty boring so thankfully it was very short.
9. Biggest Book
KIM – The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue, Mackenzie Lee (528 pages).
TANYA PATRICE – House of Earth and Blood, Sarah J. Maas. (803 pages). It took me a while to get into this fantasy novel, but it was non-stop action once I did. And it seems like I like books with snarky characters (when done right).
10. Most Anticipated Release for the Second Half of the Year
KIM – Bloodmarked (Legendborn #2), Tracy Deonn – to be published Nov 8, 2022.
TANYA PATRICE – People Person, Candace Carty-Williams. I actually thought this book was coming out in the first half of the year, but the release date got pushed to Sep. 13, 2022 (in the US) and I can’t wait! I loved Queenie, the first book by Carty-Williams, and I’m really looking forward to this one too.
We’ve both had a great reading year so far and can’t wait to come back at the end of the year and share our overall faves. What is your favorite book read so far this year?