Top Ten Tuesday is a meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. This week, the theme is “Top Ten Books of 2015 (So Far)” and we’re happy to be participating!
Golden Son by Pierce Brown
The second installment in this sci-fi series upped the ante from its predecessor smartly moving the majority of the action from Mars into space. The first book is all world building and war games in a future-dystopia. Golden Son is war and space, political intrigue and betrayals, and perhaps a smidgen of romance. And if you like wham!bam! endings that’s likely to leave you with your jaw somewhere past the floor then this is definitely a book for you.
The Mime Order by Samantha Shannon
Another 2015 second in a series that dramatically improved upon the first. Whereas the The Bone Season was a sort of jailbreak story, The Mime Order is a murder mystery replete with a psuedo-Victorian (it’s actually the future; an old time-y future) flair. Plus, it has one of my favorite ships. I’m a sucker for any sort of paranormal romantic pairing. Alien + human? Sure! All that smoldering tension, just delicious. Give me more please. Like, yesterday.
A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab
This book is such fun fantasy with hidden depths of dark and creepy. Parallel Londons, a stolid hero, a deliciously wicked, cross dressing, fierce wanna-be female pirate, and a bisexual prince round out the awesomeness. No romance but hints of maybe something (…or things) to come.
Bone Gap by Laura Ruby
I adore this strange combination of contemporary, fairy tale, and magical realism. The characters are so beautifully drawn and the story is spun so compellingly. There is a surreality to the entire story where you’re not quite sure what is or isn’t real. It somehow doesn’t matter. It’s all just lovely and powerful. It is also fiercely feminist.
Shadow Scale by Rachel Hartman
2015 has been a really great year for Book 2’s! Shadow Scale expanded upon the world and already strong cast of characters, taking us on a cross-continental journey in search of half-dragons and gods. Dearly missed, though, were adorable princely (and captain of the guard) love interest Kiggs, and Phina’s beloved uncle Orma. Layla said this is one of the most queer-friendly fantasy books she’s ready in years and I agree!
The Game of Love and Death by Martha Brockenbrough
This lyrically written historical novel follows Love and Death personified as they bring their ancient game to 1930’s Seattle. Racial tension, class privilege, and queer identities are all explored in this beautiful and heart wrenching story.
Archivist Wasp by Nicole Kornher-Stace
I love this weird little book so much and it is so underrated and I just want to shout from the rooftops and make everyone read it. A bleak post-apocalyptic setting sets the stage and our Wasp, a ghost hunter, and her ghost (you just have to read it) are on the search to find his long dead partner. It’s beautiful and spare and a poignant commentary on the bonds of friendship and love.
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
Only Sarah J. Maas could get me to enjoy a fae story so much. Romantic, darkly magical, and so, so steamy. Sarah knows how to create wonderfully flawed female heroines and the swoony guys to complement them. Plus it has that trademark slam-packed, jaw dropping Maas ending. Do not pass Go!
Uprooted by Naomi Novik
My favorite book of 2015 so far and by far! BLOODTHIRSTY TREES. I can’t stress it enough. Plus: bad-ass magic wielding heroine, realistically complex female friendship, and the most wonderfully wonderful hate-to-love full of mutual respect and admiration. Five million stars.
Here’s another underrated gem. Maggie is a hunter-in-training, learning all to take down all manner of paranormal bad guys. One wrong step in the messy land of vampire politics and–you see where this is going. This book is feminist, funny, sexy as all get out, and one of the freshest paranormal YA novels I’ve read in years.
I (weirdly?) decided to just order these by release date. They range from 4-5 stars in rating. I haven’t read anything past July releases (yet) so they are truly my favorite books of this first hald of 2015. There are a few I haven’t gotten to yet that probably would’ve made this list. Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda and An Ember in the Ashes are likely culprits for this list that I just haven’t gotten to yet! Is there anything else I’m missing out on? What’s on your lists? I’d especially love to know your under the radar recs!