I think everyone has books they devour. These are the books that light you up inside and even if you have to pause in your reading to go adulting or to school or whatever, your brain is still where with the characters and following the plot down different possible paths and you simply cannot shake yourself from the world.
That, mes chers, is what makes an excellent book.
These are definitely the types of books that cause reading slumps because when you come out of them, your head is still spinning and life feels meaningless and how can another book ever add up?!
Now, for everyone, these can be different.
Sometimes, these are books you literally read in one sitting. I personally don’t have a lot of those, because I have a difficult time sitting still that long. For this week’s Top 5 Tuesday, I’ve picked five books that left me reeling whether the book was in my hands or tucked away at home. They’re a handful of books that I couldn’t stop thinking about… and didn’t want to, either.
Uughhhh, this is just like… the ultimate for me? Like most other people, I devoured the last book in the Harry Potter series as soon as I got it. There was an electricity to that experience, like you could hear the swish, swish of pages turning from all around the world as we read together.
This is one of the few books that I sat down and read all in one sitting. As I mentioned above, this isn’t typically my jam, but man-oh-man I needed to absorb the last honeyed morsels of this series and not chance anyone ruining a twist for me. Plus, there was always that bittersweet knowledge that this was the last book and there would be no more adventures for Harry and friends. It was the last chance to ride our relationship theories, and the time where all of our years of predictions would come true, or not.
The ending of the Harry Potter series was, for me, the ending of a chapter of my childhood and I found it absolutely impossible to say goodbye. And I think a lot of people felt that way… because more than a decade later, this world… these characters… this series? It’s so close to our hearts.
This may seem like a bit of an odd one for this list. The Deepest Roots doesn’t have this big immerse world with magic and major villains and all that. It’s a magical realism story set in the midwest and included ghosts and a treasure hunt. And that’s where it got me.
I love a good ghost story, and I love a good treasure hunt. You know how uncommon it is to find treasure hunts in books these days? I powered through this book during the first ever Off-The-Grid Readathon and I have no regrets – I think I would have powered through it either way. The abilities here were so unique and interesting, and the history of the town was fantastic.
AND THE ENDING.
I really, really liked how everything wrapped itself up so nicely here. It was definitely not the ending I expected, but I thought it was so sweet and beautiful anyway.
I’m doubly liable to SHOUT FROM THE MOUNTAINS about The Deepest Roots because this one seemed to slip under the radar of the book community and I LOVED IT SO MUCH. It was SUCH a good story, and it’s Miranda Asebedo’s debut as well and just… yeah. Throw some love on this one please.
I put off this book and put off this book and finally said, “Screw it, I’m heading overseas for the next two weeks, this is a good time to download those Audible books I got on the Daily Deal and just try them.” I didn’t even really have a great idea what this one was about – I think the phrase “time travel” looped me in. I am a sucker for time travel novels.
As it turned out, this book was PERFECT for the crossing. I was so seasick for the first few days to the point I was spending a lot of time just lying in bed. My eyes were swimming, so focusing on a book or the TV was difficult. I was so grateful for audiobooks then, and Just One Damned Thing After Another really yanked my out of my miserable existence and into this world.
And, I swear, I must have been driving my husband crazy because I kept talking about what was going on in the book when I wasn’t listening to it. It became a nightly update: “Earlier today, when I was listening to Just One Damned Thing After Another, Max went back to the Cretaceous period, and….”
Guys, if this series isn’t on your radar and you like cheeky and humorous science fiction, you’ve GOT to read this.
The next two books on this list are both ones that left me itching to get back to the story. Strange the Dreamer was one I danced around for a while. You know those books that are so hyped and so loved that you really want to read them because you’ve got FOMO, but you’re also really nervous about it because there’s no way that a book can be so widely loved? That was how I felt about Strange the Dreamer before I started it.
What I found here, and what I really loved, was the immensity of the world building and the way Laini Taylor’s writing made me fall in love with it. Whenever I stepped back and removed myself from my place of squeeing adoration, I had to acknowledge that the pacing here is painfully slow. But while I was reading it, that didn’t matter, because I wanted to know more about the different godspawn throughout the ages, and how the name of Weep was lost… and just… everything.
Most of all, as I reached the ascent toward the ending, I became so entangled in the love story and the characters that I found myself listening to this at every spare moment. Even if I only had five minutes, I was there. And when I think about it, I’m still mad about the ending. And, yes, I know. I need to read Muse of Nightmares.
#5. The Raven Boys
So. My relationship with The Raven Boys seems to be a bit different than that of those who inspired me to pick it up. The more I read Maggie Stiefvater, the more I appreciate that her writing is more like intense magical realism than it is pure fantasy, and I really like that about her stories. But I was driven to The Raven Boys by the community’s love for Ronan Lynch and what I thought was (still may become?) a book with really lovable LGBTQ+ rep. And that may still occur, as I’ve only read The Raven Boys and The Dream Thieves.
What I personally found in this book was a love for Richard Gansey III and a love of the hunt and the depths of history and mystery laid into this world. I loved the search for dead Welsh kings SO MUCH that I was actually pretty affronted when I read The Dream Thieves and that was not what was going on. Like… why. Stop. Go follow ley lines, silly boys.
For whatever reason you fall into The Raven Boys, it’s easy to get wrapped up. There’s such a good cast of characters. And I do mean EVERY SINGLE CHARACTER. The worldbuilding is breathtaking and textured and just… it’s all really good and I GET why there’s so much hype about this book. And I am so glad the hype lead me to it, even if I just don’t love Ronan (sorry).
This week’s Top Five Tuesday asked:
What are your top 5 “Unputdownable” reads?
Short Answer: I think that any book with likable characters and a twisty plot gets me in its claws pretty effortlessly… but I definitely have a soft spot for certain themes. Things like pirates or time travel or quirky humor. 🙂
Thanks to Shanah for hosting! Make sure you swing over to the Bionic Bookworm and check out what’s going on over there! 🙂
Which stories would you like to see continued? Sometimes, it’s so hard to say goodbye! Let me know in the comments!