Top Ten Tuesday: Ten short books that are perfect for a quick read

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is:

Read In One Sitting Theme: ten of the shortest books I’ve read, top ten books I read in one sitting, ten books to read when you are short on time, top ten books that will make you read the whole day away, etc.

Here are a bunch of great read, all under 200 pages, that I think are excellent ways to sneak in a quick read!

1) Binti by Nnedi Okorafor. 97 pages. An amazing sci-fi adventure with a remarkable African woman as its main character. (Also, the sequel — Binti: Home — is also a short and sweet 176 pages!)

2) Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf (179 pages): Simply beautiful. (review)

3) Isis by Douglas Clegg (113 pages): A wonderful, spooky little ghost story.

4) The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett (120 pages): A quirky little novel which imagines Queen Elizabeth suddenly becoming an avid fiction reader.

5) Blockade Billy by Stephen King (112 pages): My edition includes two separate stories, both memorable and worth reading. (review)

6) The Travelling Bag and other Ghostly Stories by Susan Hill (160 pages): A collection of four ghost stories in a pint-sized hardcover edition, easy to read and certain to chill.

7) We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson (160 pages): Without meaning to, I seem to have picked some truly creepy books for this list. This book is a gothic horror delight — and I think it’s even better as an audiobook.

8) Wishful Drinking by Carrie Fisher (163 pages): A quick, funny, quirky look at the ups and down of Carrie Fisher’s life.

9) The Lover’s Dictionary by David Levithan (211 pages): Okay, slightly over 200 pages, but it’s such a quick read, and so powerful, that it just must be on this list! (review)

10) What’s a TTT list without an Outlander mention? Yes, the Outlander books are HUGE — but the novellas that fit into and alongside the series are not. For quick, wonderful reads sure to delight Outlander fans, check out any of these:

What are your favorite short and quick reads?

Whatever your spin on this week’s topic, please share your link so I can check out your list!

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Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I’m building a Book Blog Meme Directory, and need your help! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books on my Spring 2017 TBR List

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Top Ten Books on My Spring TBR.

Here are a bunch of upcoming new releases that I can’t wait to read!

Organized by release date:

1) Six Wakes by Mur Lafferty (release date 1/31/2017): I need this murder-on-a-spaceship-with-clones book now! Or , as soon as my hold request comes in at the library. I thought this author’s The Shambling Guide to New York City (review) was hilarious — I’m looking forward to seeing what she does with sci-fi.

2) The Book of Polly by Kathy Hepinstall (release date 3/14/2017): I loved Blue Asylum by this author — a beautiful work of historical fiction set during the Civil War. This one looks really different, and I’m intrigued!

3) The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi (release date 3/21/2017): I adore everything I’ve read so far by this author. I have this one on order, and I’m just waiting for it to land in my hands.

4) The Women in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck (release date 3/28/2017): This WWII novel sounds intense!

5) The Boy on the Bridge by M. R. Carey (release date 5/2/2017): I can’t wait for this sequel to The Girl with All the Gifts!

6) Less Than a Treason by Dana Stabenow (release date 5/6/2017): Book #21 in the amazing Kate Shugak series! I binge-read the series over the last year and a half, and I can’t wait to dive back into this amazing world.

7) The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid (release date 6/13/2017): I’ve loved all of this author’s contemporary novels, and I”m looking forward to seeing what she does with historical fiction.

8) Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire (release date 6/13/2017): Every Heart A Doorway (review) was one of my favorites reads of 2016, and I cannot wait for the sequel!

9) Seven Stones to Stand or Fall by Diana Gabaldon (release date 6/27/2017): Well, of course I want this book! It includes seven stories set in the world of Outlander, including two that are brand new.

10) Coming Up For Air by Miranda Kenneally (release date 7/1/2017): What’s summer without a new book in Miranda Kenneally’s Hundred Oaks series? I haven’t been disappointed yet.

 

What books are you most eager to read this spring? Please share your links!

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Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I’m building a Book Blog Meme Directory, and need your help! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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Top Ten Tuesday: My top 10 bookish firsts

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is another freebie, so I thought I’d dig into my history as a reader and focus on the 10 books that represent various reading firsts for me.

1) My first romance novel: The Flame and the Flower by Kathleen E. Woodiwiss

2) My first classic that I read just for “fun”: Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

3) The first poetry book I ever bought: Circles on the Water by Marge Piercy

4) The first Shakespeare play I ever read: Romeo and Juliet

5) The first history book I read that wasn’t for school: Vietnam by Stanley Karnow

6) The first book my husband ever told me about: Letters from Thailand by Botan (and check out our bookish romance, here)

7) The first book series I read out loud in its entirety: Harry Potter, which I read to my son a couple of years ago, over the span of 10 months

8) The first book that introduced me to the Scottish Highlands: Outlander by Diana Gabaldon (hey, it’s been at least a few weeks since I’ve mentioned Outlander in a blog post, so I’m overdue)

9) The first book I read twice in a row: The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

10) The first vampire book that made me swoon: Interview With the Vampire by Anne Rice

What’s your TTT topic this week? Please share your link!

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Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I host a Book Blog Meme Directory, and need your help! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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Top Ten Tuesday: The top 10 places I love to read

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is a freebie, so I thought I’d go with something simple and fun — it’s all about going to my happy place. Because my happy place always involves books!

Here are ten places I love, love, love to read:

Alaska 2015 136

1) In a big, cozy chair

2) On my back porch, on a sunny day

3) IN BED!

4) On an airplane

5) In a park

6) In a room full of books

7) At the beach

8) In a coffee shop

9) Any beautiful outdoor location

and, obviously…

10) Wherever I happen to be!

What’s your TTT topic this week? Please share your link!

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Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I host a Book Blog Meme Directory, and need your help! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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Top Ten Tuesday: My top 10 favorites in graphic novels, comics, & illustrated books

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is All about the visuals: Top Ten Favorite Graphic Novels/Comics or Ten Comics on My TBR or Top Ten Favorite Picture Books.

That’s a pretty broad range of choices, but I think I’ll stick with my favorites in graphic novels (some of which might more properly be called comics, but I don’t mind lumping them all together, as people tend to do). I needed to expand the topic to include other types of illustrated books as well. You’ll see why.

Starting with the serious and historically important:

1) Maus by Art Spiegelman: This modern classic is a must-read.

maus

2) Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi: The story of a girl’s adolescence and young adulthood in Iran is moving and beautifully drawn.

persepolis

Moving on to more fantastical fare:

3) Y: The Last Man by Brian K. Vaughan (review): One of my favorites ever! I love this “saga” of a worldwide mysterious event that leaves exactly one human male left on Earth. Brilliant.

ylastman

And speaking of sagas by Brian K. Vaughan…

4) Saga by Brian K. Vaughan: Such a wonderful bit of storytelling — war, love, child-raising, plus wings and horns and TV monitors for heads.

saga collage

5) Fables by Bill Willingham: I love everything about Fables, except the fact that it ended.

fables storybook love

6) Buffy the Vampire Slayer (season 8, 9, 10) by Joss Whedon et. al.: No such thing as too much Buffy! The TV series may have ended after 7 seasons, but the official Buffy storyline lives on in comic book format. And don’t miss the spin-offs about Angel, Faith, Spike, and Willow.

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7) Alex + Ada by Jonathan Luna and Sarah Vaughn (review): I stumbled across this trilogy purely by accident at the library one day. The drawing are spare, but the storytelling (about a human and a robot who fall in love, and explore what it means to be a real person) is really terrific.

Alex + Ada

8) Through the Woods by Emily Carroll: Spooky, eerie stories and illustrations make this one a must (and a great gift for anyone who enjoys the darker side of life).

Through the Woods

Ack! I’m running out of room! So tied for number 9 (cheating!) are two different works that scare the pants off me:

9a) N by Stephen King: Oh my sweet heavens. This is a terrifying book. Nightmares, nightmares, nightmares. But read it anyway!

n-stephen-king

9b) The Locke & Key series by Joe Hill: I’m ashamed to admit that I STILL haven’t read the final volume in the incredibly creative and horribly creepy Locke & Key series. Mainly, I haven’t finished because it’s been too long since I’ve read volumes 1 – 5, and I think I need to do a re-read. But the books are so scary that I’m not sure I want to do a re-read! Seriously, I love Locke & Key, but they make me want to lock all the doors and windows and never, ever go near wells or keys.

locke

And finally, an illustrated novel:

10) Wonderstruck by Brian Selznick: Really, I’d pick just about any of this author’s three wonderful illustrated books (the others being The Invention of Hugo Cabret and The Marvels). I love how the drawings are part of the narrative itself, rather than simply decoration. Wonderstruck made me cry, so it deserves a spot on my top 10 list!

wonderstruck

What books made your list this week? Please share your link!

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Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I host a Book Blog Meme Directory, and need your help! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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Top Ten Tuesday: The next 10 ARCs I plan to read

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is a FREEBIE. I love freebie weeks — it’s such fun to see all the unique top 10 lists everyone comes up with.

My top 10 topic? It’s all about the ARCs.

I’m working hard on getting my reading life organized, keeping track of my pending review copies, and making time for all the other books I want to read too. I’d taken a rather big pause in terms of requesting ARCs last year, but somehow I’ve ended up with quite a few for the first half of 2017. So, without further ado, here are 10 upcoming books, to be published between February and July, that I plan to read on or about their respective release dates. The ARCs are just sitting there on my Kindle, calling my name…

Going by release date:

1) Always by Sarah Jio (2/7/2017)

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2) The Gilded Cage by Vic James (2/14/2017)

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3) The Mother’s Promise by Sally Hepworth (2/21/2017)

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4) Next Year For Sure by Zoey Leigh Peterson (3/7/2017)

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5) Mister Memory by Marcus Sedgwick (3/7/2017)

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6) The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa See (3/21/2017)

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7) Waking Gods by Sylvain Neuvel (4/4/2017)

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8) The Best of Adam Sharp by Graeme Simsion (5/2/2017)

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9) Coming Up For Air by Miranda Kenneally (7/1/2017)

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10) South Pole Station by Ashley Shelby (7/4/2017)

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Are you planning to read (or have you already read) any of the ARCs on my list?

What’s your freebie topic this week? Please share your link!

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Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I host a Book Blog Meme Directory, and need your help! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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Top Ten Tuesday: My top ten books of 2016

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Top Ten Best Books Of 2016. 

According to Goodreads, I gave a 5-star rating to 44 books in 2016. So how to narrow down my top books to just 10? Here are the books I consider the best of the best from my 2016 reading — not necessarily books published in 2016; simply the books I read this past year that I loved the most. (And okay, I cheated a bit and snuck in more than 10!)

Note: If you want to know more about any of the books mentioned here, click on the links to see my reviews.

1) Dark Matter by Blake Crouch (review)

Dark Matter

2) The Fireman by Joe Hill (review)

The Fireman

3) All the Winters After by Seré Prince Halverson (review)

All the Winters After

4) Blue Asylum by Kathy Hepinstall (review)

Blue Asylum

5) The Versions of Us by Laura Barnett (review)

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6) Girl Waits With Gun by Amy Stewart (review)

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7) Every Heart A Doorway by Seanan McGuire (review)

Every Heart

8) Agent To the Stars/The Android’s Dream/Lock In by John Scalzi
(reviews here, here, and here)

9) Potterworld books: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (review) and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (screenplay)

10) Flight by Sherman Alexie (review)

flight

 

What were your favorite reads of 2016? Please leave me your link!

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If you enjoyed this post, please consider following Bookshelf Fantasies! And don’t forget to check out our regular weekly features, Shelf Control and Thursday Quotables. Happy reading!

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Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I’m building a Book Blog Meme Directory, and need your help! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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Top Ten Tuesday: Top ten bookish gifts I’d love to find by the light of my menorah

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Ten Books I Wouldn’t Mind Santa Leaving Under My Tree… but since I don’t expect a visit from Santa (even though I’ve been much more nice than naughty this year), I thought I’d make my post title a little more relevant to my life.

I have a tendency not to wait when there’s a book I really, really want… but then there are the more expensive, extravagant, or impractical items that I’d love to have, but just can’t justify spending money on. So, if any of my secret Hanukkah buddies out there are reading this post (just kidding, I have no such thing), here are the books and bookish items I’d really love to receive as gifts this year:

1. The Hamilton book! Now that I finally have tickets to see the show (May — hurray!), I’m trying to immerse myself in all things Hamilton. And I need this book.

hamilton

2. The illustrated edition of Game of Thrones: Because having beat-up paperback editions on my shelf just isn’t enough. The book looks gorgeous.

got1

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3. The Outlander Kitchen: This is funny if you know me, because I absolutely DO NOT COOK. I’m sure my husband would be rolling on the floor laughing hysterically right now if he knew I put a cookbook on my wishlist. But look! It’s Outlander, and it’s so pretty!

outlander-kitchen-comp

4. Any of all of these new Penguin hardcover editions of classic sci fi novels. Don’t these look amazing?

penguin-sci-fi

5. I’ve had a 3rd generation Kindle Keyboard for years now, and it works perfectly, so there’s no reason to replace it. And yet… I’m so tempted by the Kindle Paperwhite, or if I wanted to get even crazier, maybe even the Voyage.

What I have

What I have…

What I want…

6. How about splurging on a set of great quality Hogwarts robes? Totally practical — I solemnly swear that I’ll wear them on my next trip to the Wizarding World at Universal!

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7. This book won’t be released until the end of December, but I really want it — it’s a hardcover collection of John Scalzi’s short works. It’s a relatively small book at a pretty high price, so unless I see a sudden price break, it’s unlikely I’d treat myself.

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8. I’d love to find a coffee table book of Moby Dick, with beautiful illustrations and complete annotations of the text. I haven’t actually seen one (although I haven’t looked at that hard either), but that’s what I want.

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9. Moving on to the utterly frivolous, I’ve always enjoyed looking at the odds and ends in the Noble Collection, and would happily accept anything from their Harry Potter line.

10. And wrapping it all up, I think any sort of bookish piece of jewelry from Etsy would be awesome. Here’s a necklace I just found. Adorable, right?

Whatever you’ll be celebrating this holiday season, may the bookish gift fairies be very kind to you!

Happy Holidays!

If you enjoyed this post, please consider following Bookshelf Fantasies! And don’t forget to check out our regular weekly features, Shelf Control and Thursday Quotables. Happy reading!

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Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I’m building a Book Blog Meme Directory, and need your help! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Can’t-Wait Books for the 1st Half of 2017

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Top Ten Books I’m Looking Forward To For The First Half Of 2017.

In no particular order, here are the books I can’t wait to read during the next six months:

1) The Sleepwalker by Chris Bohjalian: This author’s books never disappoint!

sleepwalker

2) Silence Fallen by Patricia Briggs: It’s Mercy! The Mercy Thompson series is one of my favorite things ever. Simply cannot wait for the newest installment.

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3) The Mother’s Promise by Sally Hepworth: Her previous novel, The Things We Keep (review) was heartbreaking and beautiful. I’m really looking forward to her newest.

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4) Dusk or Dark or Dawn or Day by Seanan McGuire: Even the title of this novella gives me the chills.

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5) A Perilous Undertaking by Deanna Raybourn: The 2nd Veronica Speedwell mystery! I really enjoyed the first (review), and I’m delighted to have won this one in a Goodreads giveaway.

perilous-undertaking

6) The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid: Wow, can this author write a love story! This new book seems like it’ll be very different from her previous works, and sounds amazing.

seven-husbands

7) Martians Abroad by Carrie Vaughn: Who doesn’t love a good Martian adventure? I’ve really enjoyed the pieces I’ve read so far by this author, and this book’s synopsis sounds right up my alley.

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8) The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden: I love the sound of this Russian-flavored fairy tale.

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9) Almost Missed You by Jessica Strawser: Something about the description of this contemporary mystery really grabbed my attention.

almost-missed-you

10) Seven Stones to Stand or Fall by Diana Gabaldon: It goes without saying — last but not least! I can’t wait for this story collection, even though I’ve already read five of the seven stories. If it takes place within the Outlander-verse, I want it.

seven-stones-lg

 

What books are you most eager to read in 2017? Please share your links!

If you enjoyed this post, please consider following Bookshelf Fantasies! And don’t forget to check out our regular weekly features, Shelf Control and Thursday Quotables. Happy reading!

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Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I’m building a Book Blog Meme Directory, and need your help! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten New-To-Me Authors I Read In 2016

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Top Ten New-To-Me Authors I Read In 2016. I love this topic! I “met” so many authors this year for the first time. Here are my top 10:

Note: If you want to know more about any of the books mentioned here, click on the links to see my reviews.

1) Blake Crouch: I thought Dark Matter was amazing!

Dark Matter

2) Shirley Barrett: Author of Rush Oh!, a book that proves that reading about whaling in early 20th century Australia can be loads of fun!

Rush Oh

3) Seré Prince Halverson: All the Winters After was one of my favorite books of 2016.

All the Winters After

4) Fredrik Backman: I know, I know — A Man Called Ove got so much buzz this year… and I have to admit, it lives up to the hype!
man-called-ove

5) Christina Baker Kline: I finally read Orphan Train with my book group, and thought it was wonderful. I look forward to reading more by this author.

orphan-train

6) Amy Stewart: Girl Waits With Gun was one of my favorites this year, and I can’t wait to read the sequel, Lady Cop Makes Trouble.

girl-waits-with-gun

7) Sally Hepworth: The Things We Keep was such a sad but lovely book. I have the author’s previous novel, The Secrets of Midwives, on my TBR, so that’s one that I’ll need to make a priority in the new year.

The Things We Keep

8) Amy Schumer: Does Amy Schumer count? I’ve enjoyed her comedy for years, and had a blast with her book, The Girl With The Lower Back Tattoo.
amy-schumer

9) Sylvain Neuvel: I thought Sleeping Giants was so inventive! I can’t wait for the next book.
sleeping giants

10) Laura Barnett: The Versions of Us is a great take on the Sliding Doors style of storytelling. What if things went one way instead of the other? This book explores the different possible outcomes of a chance meeting and how people’s lives veer off into unexpected directions. Loved it.

versions2

I can’t wait to see who I’ll meet in 2017!

Which authors did you discover in 2016? Please leave me your link!

If you enjoyed this post, please consider following Bookshelf Fantasies! And don’t forget to check out our regular weekly features, Shelf Control and Thursday Quotables. Happy reading!

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Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I’m building a Book Blog Meme Directory, and need your help! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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