12 Month Book Highlights of 2015
In 2015 I read 69 books. I had hoped to read more books, but life had other plans to keep me busy. Here is a month by month highlight of those books. I’ll be adding my thoughts to the books that don’t have reviews here.
But first… my #1 Favorite Book of 2015 is
January was a short reading month for me. I don’t recall that much about that month other than that it seemed like it was a quick month, just like this January in 2016.
- Where Rainbows End by Cecelia Ahern 5★♥ Loved the movie too!!! My Review
- North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell 4.5★♥ My Review
- Hopelessly Devoted to You by Jill Steeples 3★ (noted only because it’s a Netgalley ARC book). This was an ok Chick Lit book. The plot and writing was good, as well as a nice ending. I just wasn’t liking the heroine so much in this. Jill Steeples is new author to me and I will try out some of her other books.
- The Restaurant at the End of the Universe (The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Book 2) by Douglas Adams (Kindle/Hardcover read w/ Library Audio read by Martin Freeman) 5★♥ ROFL My Review
- The DUFF: Designated Ugly Fat Friend by Kody Keplinger 4★ Book was better than the movie. My Review
- The Longest Ride by Nicholas Sparks (library audio 5★) (kindle own 4.5★) 5★♥ Loved both the book and the movie. Hope to do a review of the movie soon as I saw it last week and want to rewatch it too. My Book Review
- Be Mine Forever (St. Helena Vineyard, Book 4) by Marina Adair 3★ (Netgalley ARC) My Review
- Operation: Valentine by Loretta Hill 3★ (Netgalley ARC and free Amazon Kindle purchase on February 2015. Now it’s almost $4). This was over-the-top but cute Valentine’s Day read. A lot of Insta-Love and stereotypical characters. The writing kept the story going along quickly. I’d recommend it but at a lesser sales price, even a library loan.
- Heroes Are My Weakness by Susan Elizabeth Phillips (library hardcover and now own the kindle edition because I hope to reread it) 4.5★♥ I absolutely fell in love with the Hero in this story and he’s now on my Best of Bad Boys list. As for the heroine Annie and the puppets, that was strange. Sometimes those puppets scenes were annoying. But I did like the characters and I hope to reread this soon.
- The Mountain Between Us by Charles Martin 3.5★ My Review. New to me author.
- Gidget by Frederick Kohner 5★♥ I have always been a fan of all things of Gidget. Last year this kindle edition became available and I loved it!! Highly recommend to those fans of Gidget.
- Lost Lake by Sarah Addison Allen 5★♥ The Peach Keeper was the first book I read by this author and I just loved her magical realism writing style. It reminds me so much of Practical Magic (the book and movie). Lost Lake is my favorite so far by this author. I also recommend reading the prequel novella Waking Kate (which I read a few months after reading Lost Lake). I recommend reading Lost Lake!!
- Sneaky Pie for President (Mrs. Murphy Mystery) by Rita Mae Brown 4.5★♥ New to me author. A cat’s point of view story, so cute. A short novella with a lot of political opinions by the author and cat. Other than that, I am now looking forward to reading some more by this author and this series.
- Mockingjay (HG Series, Book 3) by Suzanne Collins (library audio read by Carolyn McCormick 2★) (hardcover/ kindle own 5★) (reread) 5★♥ Love this book. I was not surprised by the ending as I wasn’t too invested with the romance of the story. Every time I read this it’s a tear-jerker for me. There was a point in the movie where I even got teary eyed even though I knew the story.
April, another short reading month. But there was one book that I just couldn’t put down and I didn’t mind at all in taking my sweet time in reading. That book was The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. I saw the movie months before reading the book, so I knew the story, but I was still in love with it! After reading this I was suffering from a Book-Hangover for the longest time. Being that this is one of my Top Favorites All Time, I highly recommend reading this book!!
- Hero by Sarah Lean 5★♥ Such a sweet Children’s Literature book. I loved all the characters. A coming of age tale and what it means to be a Hero. And also about a dog named Jack.
- The Book Thief by Markus Zusak 5★♥ Book-Hangover!! Loved it!!!
- Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard 4★ This is your typical Young Adult Dystopia story. The author’s writing is what gripped me. Victoria kept the pace going and had me caring about what happened to the heroine. I look forward to reading the next book, and I don’t often like reading too many series books, especially when not all the books have been released yet.
- A Little Bit Cupid by Jennifer Shirk 3★ (Netgalley ARC) Really really over-the-top unbelievable with some stereotypical characters. I purchased this for free in April 2014 and it’s a now $0.99 kindle edition. The reason why it’s so cheap is because it’s a very short novella. Very short. So the characters and story isn’t that flushed out or developed. But as for a quick Valentine’s Day read, it’s ok.
- Match Me If You Can (Chicago Stars, Book 6) by Susan Elizabeth Phillips (overdrive library kindle 3★) (iTunes audio 1★) 3★ – Worst Audiobook I’ve ever listened to!! My Review.
- Emma by Jane Austen (kindle/ paper w/ iTunes audio) 5★ I was in a Book-Hangover from reading The Book Thief, and Jane Austen helped me get over it. I love Jane Austen and have read all her books but Emma. I don’t know what took me so long to read this. I’ve seen numerous movie adaptations, my favorite is from BBC starring Romola Garai as Emma Woodhouse, Jonny Lee Miller ♥ as George Knightley, and Michael Gambon as Mr. Woodhouse.
- The Heist (O’Hare and Fox, Book 1) by Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg 3.5★ My Review. Noted here because I liked the short story set before this book and thought The Heist was ok.
- William Shakespeare’s Star Wars by Ian Doescher (library kindle/ audio book) (reread) 5★♥ My Review.
- The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion (iTunes audio w/ kindle) 5★♥ This author was surprisingly funny. Especially with this character that is similar to Sheldon in The Big Bang Theory. If your a fan of that show, I highly recommend this!
- Life, the Universe and Everything (The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Book 3) by Douglas Adams (Kindle/Hardcover read w/ Library Audio read by Martin Freeman) 5★♥ My Review.
- Finding Audrey by Sophie Kinsella 5★♥ Sophie Kinsella’s first Young Adult book and I loved it! The teen heroine wasn’t annoying or unrealistic. I loved her. I’m already a Kinsella fan (recommend her Adult Fiction book, I’ve Got Your Number)
- Sabotage Season (The Kicks Series, Book 2) by Alex Morgan 4★♥ Alex Morgan is a US Soccer Gold Medalist. Her children’s literature book was pretty good. A coming of age tale of a young female soccer player who has moved to a new town and school, and finding soccer as a way to making new friends and new experiences. There’s apparently an Amazon tv show for these books now too. I recommend reading this. This is an inspirational story.
“her latest project, which might end up making even more of a difference in how women athletes are publicly perceived than her team’s recent World Cup win, is one you may not have heard of unless you have middle-school aged kids: Morgan is producing a children’s television show for Amazon.” – Sports.vice.com
- Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella (Reread) (kindle w/ iTunes audio) 3★ This was my first Kinsella book and at the time, before the movie and during my 20s, I liked Rebecca. Now I’m in my 30s and Becca is no longer my favorite heroine by Sophie. And don’t see the movie. Even with Hugh Darcy, Joan Cusack and John Goodman, it was still bad.
- By the Silver Water of Lake Champlain by Joe Hill 5★♥ New to me author. Even with this being a short novella, I really liked it. It’s a magical realism fantasy with a Lockness monster. I’m really looking forward to reading more by this author.
- I Need a Hero by Emma Bennet (Netgalley ARC) 4★ Another new to me author.
- How to be Single by Liz Tuccillo 4★ And another new to me author. But I have seen and liked He’s Just Not That Into You. I’m looking forward to seeing the movie for How to be Single. The book reminded me of Sex in the City, but it’s now the 21st Century ladies!
- Winnie-the-Pooh by A. A. Milne (Reread)5★♥ My Review.
- Playing the Field (The Matchmaker Book 4) by Elise Sax 4★ My Review.
- A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare (reread) 5★♥ My sister got me the First Folio book when they were in England. Love it! I used to work backstage at my high school and community college theaters and I lost count how many times I’ve seen this performed. Rereading this was great.
- Here’s Looking At You by Mhairi McFarlane 4★♥
- The Shop on Blossom Street (Blossom Street, Book 1) by Debbie Macomber 3★
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling (reread) 5★♥ My Review.
- To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (reread) 5★♥ (Hardcover read w/ library audio read by Sissy Spacek)
- The Rosie Effect by Graeme Simsion 5★♥ (Netgalley ARC)
- Girl Before a Mirror by Liza Palmer 5★♥ My Review.
- Waking Kate (A Novella prequel to Lost Lake) by Sarah Addison Allen 5 ★
- As You Wish by Cary Elwes (audio) 5 ★♥ My Review.
- Bummer Summer by Ann M. Martin 4★ (Netgalley ARC) My Review.
- Animal Magnetism by Jill Shalvis 4 ★
In October I tried reading some books with some sort of Halloween or theme for the month, but I only got around to finishing 3 books. Here’s a past post of those books I was hoping to read. As for the books I did read in October…
- Macbeth by William Shakespeare 4★ A great Halloween book to read. I don’t think this is my favorite by Shakespeare, but there are so many good quotes and poetry in this book.
- A Perfect Proposal by Katie Fforde 4★♥ My Review.
- The Lucky Dog Matchmaking Service by Beth Kendrick 4★ Was a little disappointed because I was hoping for more romance in this story. It focuses more on the heroine’s life itself than her romance. I did like the dogs.
- Letters From Home by Kristina McMorris 5★♥ Book Soundtrack. Loved this book. So many good quotes in this as you can probably see from the soundtrack post. I’m not much of a Historical Fiction fan, but I really liked this book.
- A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness 4.5★♥ At first the writing style was a little hard to read through, but once I got through that I just loved it. I’m really looking forward to seeing the movie now!
- The Nine Lives of Christmas by Sheila Roberts 4★♥ Book vs Movie Review. Loved the cat’s point of view the most!