Book Review: Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin

Title: Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow
Author: Gabrielle Zevin
Publisher: Knopf
Publication date: July 5, 2022
Print length: 416 pages
Genre: Contemporary fiction
Source: Review copy courtesy of the publisher via NetGalley
Rating:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

In this exhilarating novel by the best-selling author of The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry two friends–often in love, but never lovers–come together as creative partners in the world of video game design, where success brings them fame, joy, tragedy, duplicity, and, ultimately, a kind of immortality.

On a bitter-cold day, in the December of his junior year at Harvard, Sam Masur exits a subway car and sees, amid the hordes of people waiting on the platform, Sadie Green. He calls her name. For a moment, she pretends she hasn’t heard him, but then, she turns, and a game begins: a legendary collaboration that will launch them to stardom. These friends, intimates since childhood, borrow money, beg favors, and, before even graduating college, they have created their first blockbuster, Ichigo. Overnight, the world is theirs. Not even twenty-five years old, Sam and Sadie are brilliant, successful, and rich, but these qualities won’t protect them from their own creative ambitions or the betrayals of their hearts.

Spanning thirty years, from Cambridge, Massachusetts, to Venice Beach, California, and lands in between and far beyond, Gabrielle Zevin’s Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow is a dazzling and intricately imagined novel that examines the multifarious nature of identity, disability, failure, the redemptive possibilities in play, and above all, our need to connect: to be loved and to love. Yes, it is a love story, but it is not one you have read before.

Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow is the kind of immersive, powerful read that only comes along once in a great while. I found it moving and profound, and even several days after finishing the book, I’m still caught up in thoughts about its themes and images.

Pretty surprising for a book ostensibly about the world of video games, right?

Sam and Sadie first meet as young teens; Sadie stumbles across Sam in a pediatric hospital where he’s a patient and her sister is undergoing cancer treatment. Sadie doesn’t know anything about Sam other than that he’s dealing with a serious injury to his foot — but she doesn’t need to know much more. He’s playing Mario Kart, and she joins in… and instantly, they find a shared language and joy, as well as an escape from their real lives, by gaming together.

From there, they spend 609 hours together (if you read the book, you’ll find out why this matters), but a secret drives them apart, until they meet once again as college students on a cold day in Boston. Their love of gaming hasn’t changed, and they immediately rekindle their mind-meld connection and begin collaborating on a game. Along with Sam’s roommate Marx, a protective loving boy who decides it’s his mission to look after Sam, they embark on a path that will lead them to huge success and fame.

The book follows Sam and Sadie’s rise to gaming stardom while tracing the impact on their friendship. Their connection goes beyond business partnership or being friends — it’s deep and powerful, and yes, it’s love, but it’s not a romantic connection. They are so deeply entwined that any perceived betrayal or slight is felt all the way to the bone. Sam and Sadie are inextricably connected, but they go through periods of intense conflict and estrangement as well.

Over the course of the years covered by Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, we learn about their backstories, their families, their traumas, and of course, their brilliance. There’s so much to absorb here about culture, wellness and disability, reality and virtual worlds, intelligence and academia, and more. Sadie, Sam, and Marx are unforgettable characters, beautifully described and developed. We know these people and what makes them tick; we understand their joys and their pain, and when bad things happen, it hurts deeply.

The writing is beautiful, often funny, often pensive, filled with oddball characters in a world that many of us (anyone not involved in gaming and coding) may find alien. We’re given entrance into this world through these characters’ experiences, and it’s fascinating.

Maybe it was the willingness to play that hinted at a tender, eternally newborn part in all humans. Maybe it was the willingness to play that kept one from despair.

One element I loved is how the characters’ worldview is coded to the world of games, so that how they view real life is often described in gaming language (and vice versa). For example, a character involved with someone who’s married reflects:

A wife had been mentioned, as had a son. They didn’t have names, and so they weren’t characters to her, but that didn’t mean they didn’t exist.

The virtual vs real world comparisons continue throughout the book, and I found these fascinating:

How do you preserve the impossible to preserve? Or, in other words, how do you stop time and death? […] What, after all, is a video game’s subtextual preoccupation if not the erasure of mortality?

“I’m going to play until the end of this life.”

“That’s a good philosophy.”

He was tired of having to move so carefully, of having to be so careful. He wanted to be able to skip, for God’s sake. He wanted to be Ichigo. He wanted to surf, and ski, and parasail, and fly, and scale mountains and buildings. He wanted to die a million deaths like Ichigo, and no matter what damage was inflicted on his body during the day, he’d wake up tomorrow, new and whole. He wanted Ichigo’s life, a lifetime of endless, immaculate tomorrows, free of mistakes and evidence of having lived.

… [H]e could remember thinking that the best thing about games is that they could be fairer than life.

“I thought you were worried I was going to die,” Sam said.

“No. You’ll never die. And if you ever died, I’d just start the game again,” Sadie said.

As it turned out, in the late fall of 2001, Mapleworld [an online virtual world/game] was exactly what people craved. A virtual world that was better governed, kinder, and more understandable than their own

You are a gaming person, which is to say you are the kind of person who believes that “game over” is a construction. The game is only over if you stop playing. There is always one more life.

“What is a game?” Marx said. “It’s tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow. It’s the possibility of infinite rebirth, infinite redemption. The idea that if you keep playing, you could win. No loss is permanent, because nothing is permanent, ever.”

On a more granular level, I was delighted by how many words in this book were new to me! Sometimes, it can be annoying to have to check definitions, but somehow here, I found it eye-opening and challenging, especially in the context of this particular book’s setting and characters. The unfamiliar words tended to be gaming/coding terms that the characters use to express themselves in daily life — it made me feel like I’d entered into their world and been handed yet another insight into how their minds work. (For examples of new-to-me words and their definitions, see below**).

To make a game is to imagine the person playing it.

I wouldn’t have thought I’d love a book that’s ostensibly about video games, or that I’d consider it one of the best books of the year. In fact, I had to give myself a little push to pick up Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow and get started. Thankfully, I’ve read and loved Gabrielle Zevin’s books before this one and trusted that she’d write something I’d want to read!

Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow is moving and gorgeous, truly a unique reading experience. The author’s creativity and sensitivity shines through on every page. I’ll be thinking about this book for a long time to come.

**A quick, incomplete guide to words I found fascinating in T&T&T:

  • ligneous: made, consisting of, or resembling wood; woody
  • collogue: talk confidentially or conspiratorially
  • mesomorphic: having a compact and muscular body build
  • kenophobia: an intense fear of empty spaces or voids
  • viridescent: greenish or becoming green
  • ludic: showing spontaneous and undirected playfulness
  • deictic: of, relating to, or denoting a word or expression whose meaning is dependent on the context in which it is used, e.g. here, you, me, that one there, next Tuesday
  • jejune: naïve, simplistic, and superficial
  • anfractuous: sinuous or circuitous
  • echt: authentic and typical

Top Ten Tuesday: Books Too Good to Review Properly  

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Books Too Good to Review Properly .

I definitely have plenty of these! Many of these are book group books or literary fiction books that impressed me in different ways or are so well-known and written about that I felt like I had nothing to add. And somehow the idea of reviewing a classic (other than by saying — wow, I read this! and I liked it!) seems a little beyond my scope!

In any case, below are ten books that I loved — but apparently had no words when it came to writing a review (other than just handing out 5 stars, of course).

  • This Tender Land by William Kent Krueger
  • Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
  • Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier
  • Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler
  • Stardust by Neil Gaiman
  • Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery
  • Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
  • The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak
  • Deerskin by Robin McKinley
  • The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd

What books made your list this week?

Please share your link so I can check out your top 10!

Book Review: The Beautiful Ones by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Title: The Beautiful Ones
Author: Silva Moreno-Garcia
Publisher: Tor
Publication date: April 27, 2021
Length: 320 pages
Genre: Fantasy
Source: Review copy courtesy of the publisher via NetGalley
Rating:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

From the New York Times bestselling author of Mexican Gothic comes a sweeping romance with a dash of magic.

They are the Beautiful Ones, Loisail’s most notable socialites, and this spring is Nina’s chance to join their ranks, courtesy of her well-connected cousin and his calculating wife. But the Grand Season has just begun, and already Nina’s debut has gone disastrously awry. She has always struggled to control her telekinesis—neighbors call her the Witch of Oldhouse—and the haphazard manifestations of her powers make her the subject of malicious gossip.

When entertainer Hector Auvray arrives to town, Nina is dazzled. A telekinetic like her, he has traveled the world performing his talents for admiring audiences. He sees Nina not as a witch, but ripe with potential to master her power under his tutelage. With Hector’s help, Nina’s talent blossoms, as does her love for him.

But great romances are for fairytales, and Hector is hiding a truth from Nina—and himself—that threatens to end their courtship before it truly begins. The Beautiful Ones is a charming tale of love and betrayal, and the struggle between conformity and passion, set in a world where scandal is a razor-sharp weapon.

A book doesn’t have to be long to be a completely immersive reading experience. Case in point: The Beautiful Ones by Silvia Moreno-Garcia — a 320-page novel that left me feeling utterly transported.

The Beautiful Ones was originally published in 2017, but is being reissued this month via Tor Books, with a gorgeous new cover. I hope this book gets tons of attention — it’s definitely one of my top reads of the year.

From the very first page, we’re swept up in a love story that feels desperate, epic, and heart-pounding all at once.

Ten years earlier, a pair of nineteen-year-olds, Hector and Valerie, fell madly in love. But their relationship was unsanctioned and seemingly faced impossible hurdles. Hector was a young, poor performer, but Valerie was one of the “Beautiful Ones” — a descendent of an old-money upper class society family. Valerie’s family, however, having lost its fortune, was relying on Valerie marrying wealth in order to redeem them from impending disaster. Hector and Valerie pledged to marry and became secretly engaged, and then he left to seek his fortune — only to receive a letter from Valerie several months later, letting him know she’d married someone else.

The world of The Beautiful Ones is familiar in many ways, yet with its own oddities. It has a Victorian feel to it, with a huge emphasis on manners, class distinctions, reputation, and social connections. At the same time, this is a world where people may have rare talents, such as Hector’s telekinesis — which elevates him to heights of fame and admiration, but which in a woman is considered somewhat gauche, a bit of a magic trick that polite women don’t display in public.

“Nina, if you want to play these games in the privacy of your room, I will not chide you, but in the presence of others, you should restrain yourself…

“It is not normal. It is a performance at a fair, like the freaks they display for a few coins…

“I don’t mean you. I mean, in general, these are carnival games, these are things unfit for ladies.”

The story is centered in the city of Losail, considered the epicenter of fashion and society. There’s a continent called Iblevald where Hector spends ten years exploring and performing, which sounds tropical and dangerous, with cities as well as undeveloped areas. Losail sounds like it could be in France (certainly, many of the names are French or French-inspired), but this is really a world that’s not ours, so the comparisons only go so far.

As the story begins, Hector returns from his ten years abroad, now a wealthy and famous man, appearing in performances in Losail to great fanfare. Why Losail? Because that’s where he’s heard that Valerie and her husband live, and after all these years, he’s still obsessed. He knows she’s married, but he can’t help himself — he has to see her, be near her once again.

As he attends his first social engagement, he’s crushingly disappointed to learn that Valerie is not present, but instead ends up meeting Antonina — who prefers to be called Nina — Valerie’s husband’s young cousin who is staying with the couple as she enters her first social season. Nina is sweet, impulsive, not held back by manners, and very, very curious. She also has talents of her own — telekinetic powers that come out when she’s particularly emotional, usually without her control, which have earned her scorn and a nickname (the Witch of Oldhouse) back in her country village.

Nina is starstruck and full of admiration for Hector, but he sees her as a means to an end — getting close to Valerie again. As Hector starts to court Nina, he’s clearly using her, but even as his obsession with Valerie continues, Nina’s essential goodness begins to impress him in unexpected ways.

But then Nina smiled. It was like looking down and finding the first green sprouts rising from the frozen, black earth. Almost invisible and yet there, heralding spring.

I don’t want to give too much away, so I’ll stick to major themes instead of plot points from here on out. The Beautiful Ones has the breathless feel of a romantic tragedy, but there are also moments of joy and sweetness and emotional connection. The obsession that at first had me thinking of Wuthering Heights turns into something else, and I loved both Nina and Hector’s emotional journeys over the course of the book.

The book includes chapters from different points of view, and it’s fascinating and illuminating to be inside Nina, Hector, and Valerie’s heads. Each are very, very different, and the intentions (and manipulations) that become apparent can be moving or shocking, depending on whose POV we’re focused on in any given moment.

I was thoroughly spellbound as I read this book, and found it hard to focus on anything else in my life until I could sit back down and keep reading. There’s so much drama and tension, and it all builds to an unforgettable set of confrontations and consequences.

Nina herself is a fabulous character, with hidden depths, a core of steel, an undeniable curiosity and intelligence, and a heart that wants nothing more than to love and be loved. She makes this book so enjoyable, and you can’t help rooting for her happiness at every turn.

I love the elegance and the urgency of The Beautiful Ones. There’s a tense, dramatic mood created right from the start, and I couldn’t help fall under the spell of the beautiful writing and the magical atmosphere that builds from page to page.

The Beautiful Ones is a must-read! Don’t miss it.

**********

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Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Books of 2020

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Favorite Books of 2020.

2020 was a dismal year in so many ways, but on the bright side, being stuck at home most of the year meant lots of time for reading! I read so many great books this past year — here is a selection of my favorites. (Some of these are 2020 releases, and some are older — but all are books I read in 2020).

  1. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid
  2. The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
  3. Time After Time by Lisa Grunwald
  4. The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune
  5. Hearts of Oak by Eddie Robson
  6. Plan Bad Heroines by Emily M. Danforth
  7. The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V. E. Schwab
  8. The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow
  9. The Glamourist Histories (series) by Mary Robinette Kowal
  10. The Folk of the Air (series) by Holly Black

 

What were your favorite books of 2020?

Share your links, and I’ll come check out your top 10!

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Loved but Never Reviewed

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Books I Loved but Never Reviewed.

Between my blog and Goodreads, most of my more recent reads got at least a short review. So, for this topic, I mostly went back to books I read in my pre-blogging days… or books that I loved so much or that are so universally adored that there didn’t seem to be much point in writing a review (other than the old short stand-by: “I loved it!).

  1. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon (yes, really– for all that I talk about this book on my blog, I’ve never written an actual review)
  2. Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery
  3. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
  4. 11/22/63 by Stephen King
  5. March trilogy by John Lewis
  6. Blue Asylum by Kathy Hepinstall
  7. Sunshine by Robin McKinley
  8. Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn
  9. The Samurai’s Garden by Gail Tsukiyama
  10. Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler

What books are on your TTT this week? Please share your links!

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Book Review: The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Reid Jenkins [a spoiler-free review!]

Title: The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo
Author: Taylor Jenkins Reid
Publisher: Washington Square Press
Publication date: June 13, 2017
Length: 389 pages
Genre: Contemporary/historical fiction
Source: Purchased
Rating:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

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. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo is a mesmerizing journey through the splendor of old Hollywood into the harsh realities of the present day as two women struggle with what it means–and what it costs–to face the truth. 

My first 5-star read of 2020! The only question is, why did it take me until now to read this excellent book?

I’ve been a fan of author Taylor Jenkins Reid for several years now. I first read her book Maybe in Another Life when it was released in 2015, then went back and read everything else she’s written. I loved, loved, loved last year’s Daisy Jones and the Six. But for whatever reason, despite having a copy on my shelf since 2017, I just didn’t get around to Evelyn Hugo. Now I finally see what all the buzz was about — and let me tell you, it’s all completely justified!

By now, most people have probably read this amazing book — but here’s the thing: I went into The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo remarkably unspoiled. I’d read the blurb, and knew it was about a former Hollywood icon who’d been married seven times. And that’s it.

(And thinking about it, perhaps that’s why I didn’t feel especially compelled to pick up the book, despite all the glowing reviews. Hollywood stars and scandals isn’t usually a topic that draws me.)

Now, having read the book, I know just how much more there is to Evelyn’s story. And I am so appreciative of the fact that I read it with no expectations and no advance knowledge of the true depths waiting to be discovered.

So, for the sake of anyone who hasn’t had the pleasure of reading The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo yet, I’m not going to give anything away!

Taylor Jenkins Reid introduces us to star Evelyn Hugo at age 79, as she’s finally ready to share her true story to a relatively unknown writer. Why does she choose Monique? Why tell her story now, after so many years outside of the spotlight? All will be revealed by the end!

Evelyn is a marvelous character, a girl who came from nothing and reached the pinnacle of Hollywood stardom. The public came to know her through her movies and awards, but she became equally (if not more) famous for her series of marriages and their scandals.

But each marriage is a key to understanding the puzzle that is Evelyn. Each reveals yet another chapter of her history and her control of her own narrative and destiny.

As I said, I simply refuse to give anything away, because I love the fact that all of Evelyn’s secrets ended up surprising me as I read the book. But here’s what I can share:

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo is filled with:

  • Complex, fascinating characters
  • Powerful emotional connections
  • Deep, abiding friendship
  • True, passionate love
  • A reverence for families of all sorts
  • Unflinchingly honest reflections on sacrifice, power, manipulation, scandal, and fame

… and so much more.

I just loved this book, plain and simple. I think it would make a fantastic book group choice, as there’s so much to mull over and think about. I’m pushing this book on a few key bookish friends so I can talk about it with them!

As if I were in any doubt, this book absolutely confirms the talent of Taylor Jenkins Reid. I can’t wait to see what she writes next! Whatever it is, I’ll be first in line to read it.

Interested in this author? Check out my reviews of:

Forever, Interrupted (2013)
After I Do (2014)
Maybe In Another Life (2015)
One True Loves (2016)
Daisy Jones & The Six (2019)


Top Ten Tuesday: Books I LOVED with Fewer than 2,000 Ratings on Goodreads

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Books I LOVED with Fewer than 2,000 Ratings on Goodreads.

It’s nice to be able to give some love to stellar books that not enough people know about! Here are some of my top-rated reads, all with fewer than 2,000 ratings on Goodreads. Where available, I’m including links to my reviews, so check ’em out if you’re interested!

1) All Men of Genius by Lev AC Rosen (1,463 ratings): A super-charming steampunk adventure, with nods to Shakespeare and Oscar Wilde. I think I’m due for a re-read!

2) Rush Oh! by Shirley Barrett (1,292 ratings): An Austen-esque novel about a whaling community in Australia in the early 1900s. Such a great read! (my review)

3) Extreme Makeover by Dan Wells (943 ratings): The end of the world, as brought about by a cosmetics company. Scary yet kind of funny in a bizarre sort of way. (my review)

4) Pride and Prometheus by John Kessel (358 ratings): Why haven’t more people read this book?? I rave about this book whenever I get a chance — a mash-up of Frankenstein and Pride and Prejudice that works perfectly. (my review)

5) Alive in Necropolis by Doug Dorst (933 ratings): I read this book years ago, but remember being charmed by the shenanigans of the ghosts in a California cemetery.

6) Bannerless by Carrie Vaughn (1,468 ratings): I can’t for the life of me figure out why more people haven’t read this terrific book and its sequel, The Wild Dead. The world-building and storytelling are amazing. (my review)

7) Miniatures by John Scalzi (1,808 ratings): This collection of short fiction is adorable and highly entertaining. (my review)

8) Unequal Affection by Lara S. Ormiston (1,857 ratings): Yet another Austen-influenced book! This is one of the best riffs off of Pride and Prejudice that I’ve encountered — not a retelling exactly, but a continuation with an alternate ending. What if Elizabeth had accepted Mr. Darcy’s first proposal? This book explores what might have happened, and is a wonderful read. (my review)

9) All the Winters After by Sere Prince Halverson (1,534 ratings): A beautiful story about love, second chances, and survival, set in one of my very favorite places, Alaska. (my review)

10) The Only Harmless Great Thing by Brooke Bolander (1,591 ratings): As I wrote on Goodreads: Weird, wonderful, beautiful, tragic. If you’re wondering how elephants could possibly fit into a story about the “radium girls” tragedy, check out this inventive, powerful novella. (my review)

Have you read any of these? What are your top underrated books?

If you wrote a TTT post this week, please share your link so I can check out your list!

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Of My Most Recent 5-Star Reads

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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 10 Of My Most Recent 5 Star Reads.

I feel like I’ve already praised most of these to death, but hey — if a book is that good, it’s always worth talking about again! My top ten, in no particular order:

 

1) Breakup by Dana Stabenow: I can’t help raving about this terrific series!

Breakup

2) And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie: My first Christie, finally!

and then

3) Lock In by John Scalzi (review): Fascinating sci-fi.

lock in

4) All the Winters After by Seré Prince Halverson (review): Love and Alaska – what could be better?

All the Winters After

5) The Guest Room by Chris Bohjalian (review): Disturbing, shocking, and moving.

Guest Room

6) In the Shadow of Blackbirds by Cat Winters (review): So far, every one of this author’s books has been a 5-star read for me.

In the Shadow of Blackbirds

7) Uprooted by Naomi Novik (review): Utterly magical and absorbing.

Uprooted

8) Alex + Ada by Jonathan Luna and Sarah Vaughn (review): An amazing graphic novel trilogy.

Alex + AdaAlex + Ada 2aa

9) Depth by Lev AC Rosen (review): Sci-fi noir — a detective story set in the drowned city of New York.

Depth

10) The Marvels by Brian Selznick (review): This author continues to amaze with his words-and-pictures approach to storytelling.

The Marvels

What books made your list this week? 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!

♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

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!

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten (or so) Books I Read in 2015

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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 Read in 2015. I pulled up my Goodreads stats for 2015… and discovered that I gave 5-star ratings to 48 books.

Granted, some of these were re-reads (A Dirty Job by Christopher Moore, Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein) or audiobook versions of classics I read long ago (all the works of Jane Austen), but still, it’s kind of thrilling to see how many books I truly loved in 2015!

For the purposes of this list, I’m narrowing it down to the best of the bunch, excluding re-reads and graphic novels, and probably leaving out some of the books I’ve already raved about ad infinitum. In no particular order, here are the best of the bunch:

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

1) Inside the O’Briens by Lisa Genova (review)

Inside the O'Briens

2) The Boston Girl by Anita Diamant (review)

Boston Girl

3) Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf (review)

Our Souls At Night

4) The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd (review)

Invention of Wings 2

5 & 6) The Uninvited (review) and The Cure for Dreaming (review) by Cat Winters

CWinters

7) The Marvels by Brian Selznick (review)

The Marvels

8) Winger by Andrew Smith (review)

Winger

9) Depth by Lev AC Rosen (review)

Depth

10) The Bookseller by Cynthia Swanson (review)

the bookseller

Look, I read too many great books this year to stop at 10… so onward we go!

11) You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day (review)

You're Never Weird

12) The Aeronaut’s Windlass by Jim Butcher (review)

Aeronauts Windlass

13) The Light in the Ruins by Chris Bohjalian (review)

light

14) All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (review)

All the Light

15) The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown (review)

The Boys in the Boat

What were you favorite books from 2015? Share your links, and I’ll come check out your top 10… or 15!

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!

♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

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!