Yesterday I talked about my least favourite books of 2019, so today I’ll talk about my favourite ones. Thankfully, the good certainly surpassed the bad this years at least in terms of what books I read if nothing else. I’ve discovered quite a few new faves and re-read some old favourites. I won’t talk about any of the re-reads, because I have quite a few new favourites to talk about. This year was the year of series for me. I read quite a few of them. So without me rambling any more, in the order I read them (more or less), here are my favourites of 2019.
Saga by Brian K. Vaughan & Fiona Staples
I read three volumes in 2019 and I loved them. This has become one of my favourite graphic novel series and I can’t wait to continue with it. The story is so good and the characters are amazing and there’s a cat that knows when people are lying and it’s just great. It’s the science-fiction fantasy type of story I’ve been craving ever since first reading The Broken Earth series. It’s nothing like that series, except that they’re both really good. I’m trying to pace myself because they are on hiatus at the moment, so I don’t want to run out too quickly, but I think I’m overdue for a volume soon.
Skyward by Brandon Sanderson
This is not the first Sanderson book on this list. I very nearly put all the Brandon Sanderson books I read in 2019 on here, but I wanted to limit myself to 10 books and I didn’t just want to talk about Brandon Sanderson. It was a choice between this and Elantris and while I did really like Elantris, I’ll be talking about another Cosmere book later on in the post, so I wanted to give a not to his YA sci-fi. I was honestly very pleasantly surprised by this. I questioned whether or not I would like it since it’s so different from the Cosmere books I’d read and part of what makes Sanderson’s books so good is how cool and creative his magic systems are. So I questioned whether I would like a sci-fi book. But I shouldn’t have because I flew through this and I will unquestioningly read Brandon Sanderson books from now on.
Monstress by Marjorie Liu & Sana Takeda
Another graphic novel series. 2019 was my year for delving into graphic novels. This one is the grimdark steampunk I never knew I wanted. It’s so good and weird and creepy and interesting. And the artwork is so good. I read the first two volumes last year and I can’t wait to read the rest. I’m once again pacing myself. There are 2 more volumes out and then I have to wait and I’m not sure how long. So I’m saving them for moments when I really need something amazing.
The Martian by Andy Weir
This was such a surprise for me. I thought I wouldn’t like it and ended up reading it in one day and it just made me happy. It’s a book about science where the science isn’t messed up. The majority of the books I didn’t like this year I didn’t like because of the way they used very inaccurate and implausible science. So this was great. It genuinely improved my mood at a time when I was very depressed and didn’t think anything could make me feel better. And that’s really all I need to say about this book, though I have reviewed it if you want to hear a bit more of my thoughts.
Holy Sister by Mark Lawrence
I love this series and I know some people didn’t like this finale, but I really did and I can’t wait to read his new series in this world. I hope it’s just as good. I’m going to miss Nona, but I’m also very curious to know more about the world and hopefully the magic system. All I’m saying is magical assassin nuns. I have also reviewed this whole series if you’re interested in that.
Sadie by Courtney Summers
This is somewhat of a deviation from the SFF books that are predominant on this list. I like thrillers, but they have to be really good for me to like them. There are so many mediocre thrillers out there. But I digress. This books was so good, I could not stop. I definitely recommend it as an audiobook. It works so well because the whole book is basically a podcast. So listening to it on audio just makes it that much better. Definitely one of the best thrillers I’ve read recently. A great book totally deserving all the hype it got. I’ve reviewed this one as well.
Scythe by Neal Shusterman
I actually read this whole series in 2019, but I think only this first one is worthy of this list. I liked the second one a lot as well, but not enough for it to be on here. I hated the third one as I mentioned in my worst books post and also in my review of it. But this first book was great. I was hooked and it just reminded me of all the things I do enjoy about utopia/dystopia as genres. I don’t read much of that genre anymore because it’s so cliched and full of mediocre books, but this was so refreshing and cool. I am still fuming about the finale, but this is a positive post, so I’ll refrain from further ranting.
The Stormlight Archive by Brandon Sanderson
This is probably my favourite Sanderson series that I’ve read this far. I’m so glad we are getting book 4 in 2020 because I’m about a quarter of the way through book 3. I read the first two in 2019. And it’s a testament to how amazing this series is that I easily got through 2 1000+ page books and I’m still super excited that this series has 10 BOOKS PLANNED!!! And it’s Brandon Sanderson, so there’s a real chance that we’ll actually get to read all 10 of them in this lifetime! God bless Brandon Sanderson, honestly. In a world full of Patrick Rothfusses and George R. R. Martins, we just need a Brandon Sanderson.
Circe by Madeline Miller
I avoided this for the longest time because I thought I’d find it boring, but I loved it. I really love mythology so I’m not sure why I thought I wouldn’t enjoy it. I guess the synopsis and the reviews I’d heard just made it sound boring. And it’s really hard to summarise this book without making it sound boring. But it’s actually great and I want Madeline Miller to write more mythology books please and thank you.
The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden
This is another series I put off for ages because everyone said it’s a historical fantasy and I though that would be a bit dull. Don’t ask why, I read medieval based fantasies all the time, but my brain hears ‘historical’ and thinks ‘oh, boring’. Even though I actually do enjoy historical fiction. LOGIC? WHAT LOGIC? But anyway, I can’t really articulate how much I loved this series. It made me feel happy and warm inside and I am grateful for it.