Top 7 Books I’ve Read in 2018 So Far

June has ended and half of 2018 is over, so I’m featuring some of the top books I’ve read so far this year! (Listed in alphabetical order by last name. Titles are linked to full reviews.)


The Explorers: The Reckless Rescue by Adrienne Kress

The Reckless Rescue

This book is incredibly fun and is an excellent example of what I love about middle grade. The adventures the characters have are wild and improbable but in the best possible way, plus there are strong themes of bravery and friendship. There’s also a shark and a pig in a teeny hat. All good things. I can’t wait for the release of book 3! (Ok, I will be waiting a while, which is pretty sad.)

The Poppy War by R. F. Kuang

I’m not *quite* as obsessed with The Poppy War as many other readers, but I have to admit it is a well-constructed fantasy. One of my major complaints was that I can see the seams of that construction, but I think this is something the author will iron out as she continues writing.

Tempests and Slaughter by Tamora Pierce

Tempests and Slaughter

I love young adult books, but in the past two years or so, I have really thought they are all starting to sound the same: plot, prose (possible Sarah J. Maas inspired prose….), characters, etc. Tamora Pierce has reminded me of why I love YA. Her work is well-written, thoughtful, and immensely engaging. I will be looking forward to the rest of the series with enthusiasm.

Geekerella by Ashley Poston

Geekerella

This is a fun, light read, so I don’t think it’s going to make it onto my list of “best books I’ve ever read in my life” because it’s not that deep. However, it’s a really well-done take on Cinderella, making the story feel fresh and original when I despaired of such a thing every being possible. Definitely worth a read if you’re looking for a feel-good book.

The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

lotr paperbacks

We all know this is my favorite book, so I won’t wax on about it. I just had to include it because I’m rereading it this year, and of course it’s one of the best books I’ve read!

Nevermoor: The Trials of Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend

Nevermoor

I predicted when I first read Nevermoor that it would be one of my top books of the year, and so far that prediction is holding up. It’s beautifully imaginative and just so overall enthralling and generally well-written that I recommend checking it out if you haven’t already. I can’t wait for the sequel!

The Jeeves series by P.G. Wodehouse

I haven’t actually reviewed any P. G. Wodehouse books on the blog (though Krysta has, here) because I’m not 100% sure what I would say beyond that they’re funnier than I expected (I just thought they wouldn’t be my sense of humor) and that they’re often surprisingly heartwarming. Protagonist Bertie Wooster may get into odd predicaments, but his heart is often in the right place and he really goes out of his way to help his friends, particularly when a he and a fellow were at school together.

Have you read any of these? What did you think? What are some of your top reads this year so far?

Briana

30 thoughts on “Top 7 Books I’ve Read in 2018 So Far

  1. Lily @ Sprinkles of Dreams says:

    I can’t wait to read The Poppy War, because everyone’s been gushing over it, but it’s nice to read a somewhat more balanced opinion on this book. I’m glad you still enjoyed it, though. 🙂

    Lovely post, Briana! ❤

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  2. whatsnonfiction says:

    I love the Jeeves series so much! Like you I was surprised at how funny they were, I thought it would be that kind of stodgy, highbrow literary humor but they’re hilarious. His descriptions of people are the best! And agreed, they’re very heartwarming.

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  3. aubreyleaman says:

    Awesome list! I have this kind of weird relationship with LOTR where I absolutely love them when I’m not reading them, but when I’m in the process of actually reading them I feel more neutral about them. Same with Alice in Wonderland! In any case, I just finished reading “Futuristic Violence and Fancy Suits” by David Wong and it was fun, crazy, and laugh-out-loud funny so I’d definitely recommend it. 🙂

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  4. MoMo @ Remnants of Wit says:

    I love the Jeeves series! It never fails to make me laugh and groan at Bertie’s antics. Have you seen the BBC series with Hugh Laurie and Steven Fry? Well worth a watch. I’m rereading LOTR too, and I can officially say it’s my all-time favorite. Thanks for this list–I’ll have to go check out the reviews of the other books you’ve listed!

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  5. Amber says:

    I’m considering on giving Poppy War a try. I’m not a big fantasy person but I want to get into it more I think my problem is I haven’t found many fantasy books that completely blow me away. I also just want to start branching out more from YA and try our more adult books and middle grade books and everything else the book world has to offer :3

    Amber @ Escape Life in the Pages

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    • Briana | Pages Unbound says:

      I really like Brandon Sanderson for adult fantasy. I think his prose is kind of “meh,” but that may actually be what makes his books feel really approachable. It’s just so straightforward, whereas other fantasy authors are sometimes going over the top trying to sound complex and old-timey and whatnot.

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  6. Annemieke says:

    They all sound great. I have Nevermoor and The Poppy War ready to read. I even got a Nevermoor umbrella at my local bookstore that they were send by the publisher haha. I’m sure my kid will love that when he is older.

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  7. Lois says:

    The Poppy War keeps popping up on my timeline right now and I am so intrigued by it. The premise sounds awesome, dark, and complex, just what I like in my fantasy books haha. I keep meaning to read Lord of the Rings but have never found the time to do so. I think because it’s been a favourite franchise of mine since I was a kid (my dad read the books to me) I’m scared to read it as an adult and not enjoy it as much.

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  8. saraletourneau says:

    Tempests & Slaughter is one of my favorite reads so far this year, too. 🙂 I think I’ve only read 6 or 7 brand new books; all the others came out in previous years. So if I had to pick a couple favorites from each “camp,” they would be:

    – Side By Side by Jenni L. Walsh, which explores Bonnie and Clyde’s two-year crime spree from Bonnie’s perspective
    – The Price Guide to the Occult by Leslye Walton, a haunting, horror-tinged YA magical realism novel about a girl who learns to confront her emotionally abusive mother after she (the mother) publishes a book of spells that wrecks havoc on their vacation island home
    – Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson (how in the world have I NOT read a Sanderson book before this year?!?!)
    – A Natural History of Dragons by Marie Brennan, the first installment in a series of fictional biographies about a dragon expert (who lives in a world where multiple dragon species exist!)
    – American Street by Ibi Zoboi, a YA magical realism novel about a young Haitian girl who’s forced to navigate faith, family, and her new Detroit home on her own after her mother is detained by immigration officials

    Btw, have you or Krista read Rae Carson’s Fire and Thorns Trilogy? I finished that series not too long ago, and it’s now one of my favorite YA fantasy series ever. And that’s coming from someone who’s been struggling with YA fantasy as of late.

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    • Briana | Pages Unbound says:

      I keep seeing The Price Guide to the Occult at the library and kind of want to get to it sometime, but I just have so much to read! *panics and falls under a stack of books*

      I think Krysta might have read something by Rae Carson? I definitely haven’t yet. That’s good to keep in mind, though, because I have also been struggling with YA fantasy!

      Liked by 1 person

      • saraletourneau says:

        LOL! I know the feeling! But this year I’ve been much more selective about buying books (and therefore have spent less money – yay!), so I’m kind of proud that I’ve been able to make a dent in my TBR pile, even though it’s still growing a little bit… But I’m not longer afraid of drowning in books. XD

        Rae Carson’s Gold Seer books (YA historical fantasy) are also quite good. You can’t go wrong with choosing either series by her. It’s more of less a matter of where you’d prefer to start, epic versus historical.

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  9. Jheelam says:

    The cover of Geekerella is so cute. Thank you for the list. Did a little research on “Nevermoor” and it’s going to my ever-stretching TBR list. 😀 I’ve recently finished off reading the first two books of the “Winternight Trilogy” and absolutely loved them.

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  10. Jackie B @ Death by Tsundoku says:

    Wonderful list, Briana! The only one I’ve read is Geekarella and I completely agree with you. It’s a fun, light read which won’t be in my all-time favorite books, but it will be coming to the top of recommendation lists for many.

    It sounds like all the rest of these books are series. Is that true? Regardless, are any of these from completed series?

    Two of my favorite books from 2018 are Born a Crime by Trevor Noah and A Long Way from Chicago by Richard Peck. Fairly different books with brilliant writing and wonderful messages.

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