Books I Just Have to Read: 2017 edition | Blogmas Day 22

I know I did a Top 10 Sequels I Wish I Had Read/Bought in 2016 blog post and those are definitely on my list for this coming year, but there are other books. Surprising no? Other books that have sat on my shelf for too long, and I’m calling time. They need to be read or donated either way, they need to be gone. These are the books I just have to read in 2017.

Sleepless

Young, rich and good-looking, Izzy and her friends lead seemingly perfect lives. But exams are looming and at a school like Clerkenwell, failure is not an option. Luckily, Tigs has a solution. A small pill that will make revision a breeze and help them get the results they need. Desperate to succeed, the group begin taking the study drug. It doesn’t take long before they realize there are far worse things than failing a few exams.

I bought this book at YALC almost 18 months ago and it has sat there, waiting for me to read it, but still it has been neglected. I’m determined to get through all the books that have been sat on my shelf for so long. This one of them, it will be read. I was so interested in the plot especially after listening to the author talk about her process. Who knows if that will still be the case this year, if it’s not then I’ll either sell it on, or donate it!

The Diviners

Evie O’Neill has been exiled from her boring old hometown and shipped off to the bustling streets of New York City—and she is pos-i-tute-ly ecstatic. It’s 1926, and New York is filled with speakeasies, Ziegfeld girls, and rakish pickpockets. The only catch is that she has to live with her uncle Will and his unhealthy obsession with the occult.

Evie worries he’ll discover her darkest secret: a supernatural power that has only brought her trouble so far. But when the police find a murdered girl branded with a cryptic symbol and Will is called to the scene, Evie realizes her gift could help catch a serial killer.

As Evie jumps headlong into a dance with a murderer, other stories unfold in the city that never sleeps. A young man named Memphis is caught between two worlds. A chorus girl named Theta is running from her past. A student named Jericho hides a shocking secret. And unknown to all, something dark and evil has awakened.

Another casualty of YALC 2015, still sat on my shelf. I was swept up in the wonderful things that everyone was talking about it at the time. My best friend bought it at the same has actually read it and hated it. But it’s time to make my own mind up about this book, and make a decision whether to carry on the series or leave it at book one.

The Name of the Wind

Told in Kvothe’s own voice, this is the tale of the magically gifted young man who grows to be the most notorious wizard his world has ever seen.

The intimate narrative of his childhood in a troupe of traveling players, his years spent as a near-feral orphan in a crime-ridden city, his daringly brazen yet successful bid to enter a legendary school of magic, and his life as a fugitive after the murder of a king form a gripping coming-of-age story unrivaled in recent literature.

A high-action story written with a poet’s hand, The Name of the Wind is a masterpiece that will transport readers into the body and mind of a wizard.

In terms of books I just have to read this is pretty high up there. There has been nothing but amazing reviews and thoughts about this series but it’s massive and I don’t mean a little bit daunting I mean ASOIAF daunting. But it is definitely one I need to take a deep breath with and get on with it, and soon.

Starcrossed

How do you defy DESTINY?

Helen Hamilton has spent her entire sixteen years trying to hide how different she is – no easy task on an island as small and sheltered as Nantucket. And it’s getting harder. Nightmares of a desperate desert journey have Helen waking parched, only to find her sheets damaged by dirt and dust. At school she’s haunted by hallucinations of three women weeping tears of blood… and when Helen first crosses paths with Lucas Delos, she has no way of knowing they’re destined to play the leading roles in a tragedy the Fates insist on repeating throughout history.

As Helen unlocks the secrets of her ancestry, she realizes that some myths are more than just legend. But even demigod powers might not be enough to defy the forces that are both drawing her and Lucas together – and trying to tear them apart.

My best friend actually gave me this book as a gift when she was clearing out her book shelves. I am ashamed to say that it has sat on my shelf ever since not been touched or looked at. It will be though, I can’t have books taking up room on my limited bookshelves anymore. I’m going to be ruthless, ruthless I say. It’s on my list. Hopefully I’ll get to it.

The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August

No matter what he does or the decisions he makes, when death comes, Harry always returns to where he began, a child with all the knowledge of a life he has already lived a dozen times before. Nothing ever changes.

Until now.

As Harry nears the end of his eleventh life, a little girl appears at his bedside. ‘I nearly missed you, Doctor August,’ she says. ‘I need to send a message.’

This is the story of what Harry does next, and what he did before, and how he tries to save a past he cannot change and a future he cannot allow.

The same friend put me onto this book, but it’s one that you really have to pay attention too. I haven’t been able to put aside time to read it properly. It’s the one that I really want to read, it’s supposed to be really well written and intricately done so it needs to be read as soon as possible.

And The Mountains Echoed

In this tale revolving around not just parents and children but brothers and sisters, cousins and caretakers, Hosseini explores the many ways in which families nurture, wound, betray, honor, and sacrifice for one another; and how often we are surprised by the actions of those closest to us, at the times that matter most.

Following its characters and the ramifications of their lives and choices and loves around the globe—from Kabul to Paris to San Francisco to the Greek island of Tinos—the story expands gradually outward, becoming more emotionally complex and powerful with each turning page.

Khaled Hosseini is one of my favourite authors. I love his books and the stories he tells. This has been one of those books that has sat on my shelf since it came out. I thought it was one that I would jump on straight away but never got around to. On the top of my books I just have to read list.

A Discovery of Witches

Deep in the stacks of Oxford’s Bodleian Library, young scholar Diana Bishop unwittingly calls up a bewitched alchemical manuscript in the course of her research. Descended from an old and distinguished line of witches, Diana wants nothing to do with sorcery; so after a furtive glance and a few notes, she banishes the book to the stacks. But her discovery sets a fantastical underworld stirring, and a horde of daemons, witches, and vampires soon descends upon the library. Diana has stumbled upon a coveted treasure lost for centuries-and she is the only creature who can break its spell.

My best friend recommended this book to me and I bought it second hand on Amazon and have since picked up the second one in a charity shop. You know as you do without reading the first one and finding out whether I like the series or not. #bookwormproblems

Burial Rights

Set against Iceland’s stark landscape, Hannah Kent brings to vivid life the story of Agnes, who, charged with the brutal murder of her former master, is sent to an isolated farm to await execution.

Horrified at the prospect of housing a convicted murderer, the family at first avoids Agnes. Only Tóti, a priest Agnes has mysteriously chosen to be her spiritual guardian, seeks to understand her. But as Agnes’s death looms, the farmer’s wife and their daughters learn there is another side to the sensational story they’ve heard.

This book is gorgeous, plus it was raved about on booktube as being amazing. It was a story that was supposedly beautifully written… so why haven’t I read it yet? Why is it on the list of books I just have to read? Because I would much prefer to read crap like Die For Me obviously.

The Hundred Year Old Man who Climbed out a Window and Disappeared

It all starts on the one-hundredth birthday of Allan Karlsson. Sitting quietly in his room in an old people’s home, he is waiting for the party he-never-wanted-anyway to begin. The Mayor is going to be there. The press is going to be there. But, as it turns out, Allan is not… Slowly but surely Allan climbs out of his bedroom window, into the flowerbed (in his slippers) and makes his getaway. And so begins his picaresque and unlikely journey involving criminals, several murders, a suitcase full of cash, and incompetent police. As his escapades unfold, we learn something of Allan’s earlier life in which – remarkably – he helped to make the atom bomb, became friends with American presidents, Russian tyrants, and Chinese leaders, and was a participant behind the scenes in many key events of the twentieth century

I started reading this a long time ago like years and years ago.  Never got round to finishing it and I’ve regretted it ever since. It has sat there waiting for me, I even bought his other book which sits on the shelf next to each other. Well another addition to the books I just have to read list.

The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender

Foolish love appears to be the Roux family birthright, an ominous forecast for its most recent progeny, Ava Lavender. Ava—in all other ways a normal girl—is born with the wings of a bird.

In a quest to understand her peculiar disposition and a growing desire to fit in with her peers, sixteen-year old Ava ventures into the wider world, ill-prepared for what she might discover and naïve to the twisted motives of others. Others like the pious Nathaniel Sorrows, who mistakes Ava for an angel and whose obsession with her grows until the night of the Summer Solstice celebration.

That night, the skies open up, rain and feathers fill the air, and Ava’s quest and her family’s saga build to a devastating crescendo.

This is another beautiful book, and one that I bought purely because of how pretty the cover, I didn’t even know what it was about. It sucked me completely in from the shelves but once it sat on mine it was lost to my massive TBR and I never managed to pick it up. Another one of the books I just have to read

So that’s the books I just have to read by the end of next year. One of the many reading goals I’ve managed to give myself.

What are some of the books that have sat on your shelf for far too long? Let me know in the comments below!

2 Comments

  1. Graeae

    December 22, 2016 at 11:23 pm

    It can be nice to read books when they are a few years old. You can make your own mind about it, without being pressured into the hype or hate of it.

    1. thebookbloglife

      December 23, 2016 at 9:51 am

      I hate hype around books! It builds my hopes and expectations and a perfectly brilliant book can fall flat!

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