Books I Read This Year & My Recommendations

So probably one of my most asked questions ever is what book I’m currently reading, or what my book recommendations are – which is so cool because this year I’ve discovered a few authors that I’m just obsessed with. I thought I’d break down 10 books I read this year (total tally is 12 so far..) and let you know what they’re all about, so you can pick them up and give them a go too!

1. The Secret She Keeps – Michael Robotham
Easily my favourite book of the year. Robotham is a great author and really knows how to tell a thriller story without making it sound completely far-fetched. This story follows two women, both expecting a baby, and tells the tale of how their paths cross and what becomes of their friendship. It’s creepy, heartbreaking and gripping.

2. The Girl on the Train – Paula Hawkins
If you’ve not read this book, or at least seen the movie then what are you doing with your time? This book is SO GOOD. A woman who catches the train everyday to and from her dead end job ends up entwined in the lives of the people she sees over the fences on her commute. It’s got some sharp twists and you know you can’t trust the story you’re being told which makes for a great mystery/thriller. It’s scary, a bit gory and complex.

3. Crazy Rich Asians – Kevin Kwan
Crazy Rich Asians tells the story of two asian-americans who travel to Singapore for a friends wedding. Rachel Chu ends up meeting her new boyfriends family and sticks out like a sore thumb from the get go. Disgustingly rich, her boyfriends family reject her like an out of season handbag but she’s not having a bar of it. This story is laugh out loud funny, and very romantic.

4. Big Little Lies – Liane Moriarty
I read this book when I was travelling and I remember getting to the last few chapters on a flight to Cambodia and literally gasping out loud. This book follows the lives of a group of women who live in a beachtown, but are anything but relaxed. High strung mothers, struggling relationships and deadly secrets hang over their heads and when the final curtain falls, you’ll be left questioning everything. This story is easy to read, jaw dropping and tear jerking.

5. Say You’re Sorry – Michael Robotham
Another one by Robotham, but I just can’t get enough! Two girls go missing after they are abducted, and after 3 years of imprisonment, one of them breaks free. This results in the police and detective Joe McLoughlin being hot on their heels, but not before a gruesome discovery is made. The book is broken up into chapters by the girls, and chapters of the police search for them. This book comes with a trigger warning of rape, and is really very sad. A somewhat happy ending prevails though so read on if you’re into stories of determination and mystery.

6. When Breath Becomes Air – Paul Kalanithi
Reading this story made me rethink everything I thought about med school, doctors and what they go through on a day to day basis. When Paul Kalanithi was at the height of his career, he was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer and this story tells the tale of his fight, how he continued to work and how it made him reconsider what he’d done with his time on earth. No happy ending here, but definitely an eye opener. Read this is you’re into non-fiction, real life stories of grit and heartache.

7. Holding Up the Universe – Jennifer Niven
Once dubbed ‘America’s Fattest Teen’, Libby Strout has returned to school to find that not everyone can look past her time as the girl who was so heavy she had to be rescued from her house with a crane. She meets Jack, who hides his prosopagnosia (face blindness) by acting like a typical popular kid. As the two move into friendship, and then romance territory, Jennifer makes sure that this isn’t the typical “fat girl loses weight and falls in love” story by delving deep into these characters back stories. Read this if you like witty, young adult romances.

8. The Couple Next Door – Shari Lapena
A baby goes missing after her parents leave her to go next door to a dinner party. It’s a race against time, and a race against the people they thought they knew best, to work out what happened. Lots of twists and turns and definitely rewrites the classic abduction tale. Read this if you like drama with a race to the finish line.

9. A Stranger in the House – Shari Lapena
After waking up in hospital with no recollection of the night before, Karen becomes entwined in a gruesome murder and evidence points right at her. Can her seemingly over-helpful neighbour and doting husband help patch up memory before it’s too late? Another quick read by Lapena, she doesn’t mess around and get’s straight to the point. Read this if you like figuring out the story along with the author and binge reading.

10. You Do You – Sarah Knight
A no-nonsense guide to getting what you want, and ‘doing you’. I LOVED this book. I’m not into super fluffy self-help so this was right up my alley. Peppered with plenty of sh*ts and f*cks, you’re in for a rude awakening when Knight basically tells you to man up, and go get ’em girl! Read this if you need a good shake up!

Hopefully this list helps you build your summer reading list, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed putting it together and reliving all of the stories.

Thanks for reading!

Love, Lyd x

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