Lately I’ve been seeing this Tag all over my Instagram Feed, on the Books Blogs, and of course on YouTube. It’s one of my favorite annual things to read, and watch. It’s so much fun to see everyone’s different opinions.. on which books they loved, which ones disappointed them.. which ones had the best covers, etc! I’m not on YouTube (yet), but I still wanted to get in on this action. I’m not sure I have a thick enough skin to get into the YouTube game. People are SO mean in the comments, I’m scared haha.
Below are the Questions for the TAG, that are making their way around the Internet. I made one small change. Some of the Questions are asking which specific one book for an answer, but I wanted the Freedom to have one or two for my answers. I have a hard time choosing the BEST one, and I read so much, I need some leg room here, haha.
The Mid-Year Book Freak Out TAG
1. Best books you’ve read so far in 2018.
Okay, so the book I enjoyed the most was hands down “The Last Mrs Parrish”, by Liv Constantine. I also equally loved the Literary masterpiece that was “Night” by Elie Wiesel, but that was a very very hard and harrowing read. Both brilliant books.
2. Best sequels you’ve read so far in 2018.
I fell head over heels in love with the Manga/Graphic Art Series “The Girl from the Otherside” by Nagabe. I read the first one, and was so blown away by the stunning artwork, and beautiful story.. that I IMMEDIATELY ordered the next three sequels on Amazon Prime.
3. New releases you haven’t read yet, but want to.
I am a big fan of Ruth Ware. She’s so skilled at writing a dark thriller, with shocking twists (my fav). She has a new book out called “The Death of Mrs Westaway“, I need to get my hands on it. Also just picked up the newest selection in Reese Witherspoon’s Book Club, called “Something in the Water”, by Catherine Steadman. It looks incredible, and Reese always has the best picks.
4. Most anticipated releases for the second half of the year.
Ohhh I love this question.
- I’m a huge Karin Slaughter fan, and I can’t wait for her new book “Pieces of Her” (August 21st)
- John Ajvide Lindqvist wrote “Let the Right One In”, which is Top 10 in my Horror Fav Books & Films. His new book “I Am Behind You” looks terrifying. Can’t wait (August 23rd)
- I am SO excited for Mary Kubica’s new book “When The Lights Go Out” as well. I love all her books so much. (September 4th)
5. Biggest disappointments.
I hate to say this, because this book had so much promise. The setting (Paris), the theme (killer Nanny), and the fact that it was a Book-Club pick for me and my friend (@dailymaj on Instagram, check her out she’s amazing)…. but I was very disappointed with “The Perfect Nanny” by Lelia Slimani. It was beautifully written, and it did have some truly terrifying scenes (I MEAN that chicken carcass scene!!!), but overall I was very underwhelmed, and I didn’t really like or care what happened to any of the characters. Also “Two Girls Down” by Louisa Luna, was only okay. It was FINE, but I brought it with me to Mexico to read on Vacation, and I regretted it soo much. It was dull, long-winded and so SO boring. Also no character connection at all. It was a “Book of the Month” selection, and I had such high hopes for it. Oh well, can’t win them all! Still both very well written books, just not for me.
6. Biggest surprise.
“Simon VS The Homo Sapiens Agenda”, by Becky Albertalli…for sure. 10/10. I don’t really read any YA at all anymore, mainly because I find it hard to relate to the characters.. and I’m also not a huge fantasy fan.. which is the most popular YA Genre these days for sure. “Love Simon” has always had so much hype, and I always kind of ignored it.. that is until I saw that TRAILER. The trailer made the hairs on my arm stick up, and I knew it was going to be incredible. I ordered the book within seconds of seeing the trailer, and I just loved every single page of it. It was so heartwarming, real, relevant, important and amazing. Also don’t even get me STARTED on the movie. I am obsessed, and also somewhat in love with Nick Robinson now.
7. Favorite new authors. (Debut or new to you)
SAMANTHA IRBY!!!!!!!!!! Oh my GOD you guys. How have I lived so long without knowing about Sam.. without reading her AMAZING blog bitchesgottaeat.blogspot.com <3 I picked up her book “We Are Never Meeting in Real Life”, which is a book of Personal Essays. It was honestly the most hilarious, relateable.. laugh-out-loud-in-public-while-reading type of book. I can’t even tell you how much this book made me laugh. I’m so in love with her. Her blog is 10/10, and her other book “Meaty” which I also read, was just as incredible. God I love Samantha Irby. Please be my best friend!
8. Newest fictional crushes.
Ohhh… okay.. Rufus from “They Both Die at the End”, Pike from “Birthday Girl”, and Samantha Irby (even though she’s not Fictional).
9. Newest favorite characters.
Simon Spier from “Simon VS The Homo Sapiens Agenda”, hands down hands down.
10. Books that made you cry.
“They Both Die at the End” by Adam Silvera, it was a real slow-tear-rolling-down-the-cheek moment. “Night” by Elie Wiesel, literally started crying from the first page until the end & “Lighter Than my Shadow” by Katie Green as well.
11. Books that made you happy.
“The Surface Breaks”, “Love Simon”, “Meaty”, and “The Outsider”. Also so many more!
12. Most beautiful books you’ve bought so far this year (or received)
“THE SURFACE BREAKS” by Louise O’Neill, is the most stunning, beautiful, most wonderful book I’ve ever set my hands on. I will be doing a full Review for you, in next week’s “June Wrap Up. It’s currently on major display on my Book-shelf.
13. What books do you need to read by the end of the year?
“How to Build a Girl” by Caitlan Moran
“Stillhouse Lake”, by Rachel Caine
“House of Leaves” by Mark Z. Danielewski,
“Les Miserables” by Victor Hugo
“What if it’s Us”, by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera
Bonus Question I Added
14. Fav Quotes of This Year (So Far)?
“The way I feel about him is like a heartbeat — soft and persistent, underlying everything.”
― Becky Albertalli, Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
“You may be born into a family, but you walk into friendships. Some you’ll discover you should put behind you. Others are worth every risk.”
― Adam Silvera, They Both Die at the End
“But I’m going to need you to love me on the bus, dude. And first thing in the morning. Also, when I’m drunk and refuse to shut up about getting McNuggets from the drive-thru. When I fall asleep in the middle of that movie you paid extra to see in IMAX. When I wear the flowered robe I got at Walmart and the sweatpants I made into sweatshorts to bed. When I am blasting “More and More” by Blood Sweat & Tears at seven on a Sunday morning while cleaning the kitchen and fucking up your mom’s frittata recipe. When I bring a half dozen gross, mangled kittens home to foster for a few nights and they shit everywhere and pee on your side of the bed. When I go “grocery shopping” and come back with only a bag of Fritos and five pounds of pork tenderloin. When I’m sick and stumbling around the crib with half a roll of toilet paper shoved in each nostril. When I beg you fourteen times to read something I’ve written, then get mad when you tell me what you don’t like about it and I call you an uneducated idiot piece of shit. Lovebird city.”
― Samantha Irby, We are Never Meeting in Real Life.
(All Photography @Carly Ingram Photography 2018)