I recently discovered the Top 10 Tuesday weekly meme, hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. Similar to Top 5 Wednesdays, which I’ve been doing for a couple of months now, Top 10 Tuesdays are weekly topics about a variety of bookish things. I’m already failing a bit since I discovered the blog after Tuesday, but I was so interested by last week’s topic that I decided I wanted to give it a try. I can’t guarantee that I’ll be able to keep up with two weekly memes every week, but I will do my best!
This week’s topic was the top 10 books that you are looking forward to in the second half of the year. I thought it was a tiny bit early for this topic, since we are still a month away from the end of the first half, but it really got me looking ahead to upcoming books this year. Technically, I probably won’t be getting to most of these books for quite a while, possibly until next year, because of the challenges I’m participating in — but if there’s something that captures my attention enough, I just might substitute it in. Here are my top 10 anticipated books:
1) Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng (September 12)
I’d been hearing about Celeste Ng’s first book, Everything I Never Told You, for close to a year before I finally decided to give it a chance. It ended up being one of the best books I’ve read so far this year, and I immediately went over to Goodreads to see when Celeste Ng’s next book was coming. I was glad to see she had a new one due out this year! Celeste Ng has a real talent for capturing family dynamics while blending in more complex topics, so I’m very excited to read this book! The plot is a little tough to describe without being confusing, but I would highly recommend taking a look at the Goodreads page.
2) Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley (June 6)
I’ve never heard of Cath Crowley before, but this book came up while looking at many lists of most anticipated YA contemporary books for the year . I was initially drawn in by the cover art, but I was especially interested by the synopsis. The book is about a girl named Rachel who hid a love letter for her crush in a book in his family’s bookshop, but never received a response. Rachel later returns to the city and ends up working with her crush as a distraction to help her cope with her brother’s death by drowning. I’m excited for this book because it seems like it could be an adorable love story.
3) Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia (May 30)
I’m cheating slightly with this one, since the book is due out on May 30 but I think that’s close enough to the second half of the year. This book is about a teenager named Eliza who is the anonymous creator of a popular webcomic, who prefers to spend time online than in the “real world.” This book has received rave reviews so far and it is one of the books I am most anticipating from everything on this list! I actually haven’t read Francesca Zappia’s first book (Made You Up) yet, but that is one of the books that I am most looking forward to for my reading challenge!
4) Little & Lion by Brandy Colbert (August 8)
I actually found this book among a whole slew of titles that included two character names, but I was very intrigued by the synopsis. This book focuses on a girl named Suzette who goes home to support her brother Lionel, who has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder. I have read quite a few YA books that deal with mental health, but bipolar disorder is one that does not seem to be talked about very often. I am especially interested because this book is from the perspective of the sibling of the person who has the disorder, and not the person themselves. How disability or mental health affect other family members has always been a strong interest of mine, especially the “healthy” sibling in the household since this seems to be a perspective that is often ignored. I hope this book does it some justice.
5) Tash Hearts Tolstoy by Kathryn Ormsbee (June 6)
I discovered this book very recently, and I was interested by the unusual title/cover. It’s definitely not very common for a book to have a big picture of Leo Tolstoy (or other famous authors) on the front. The book is about a girl named Natasha (Tash) who runs a webseries that is a modern adaptation of Anna Karenina. This book has been getting a lot of buzz for featuring a romantic asexual main character, an orientation that is very rarely (if ever) addressed in YA books. I’m really loving the trend toward more books that deal with the Internet and online relationships/friendships.
6) They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera (September 5)
I’m probably getting a little ahead of myself by anticipating this one, since I haven’t read any of Adam Silvera’s other books yet, although I have one lined up for a bit later on in my challenges this year. He is an author that I’ve really been looking forward to trying after hearing such rave reviews about all of his books. This one is about two boys, strangers to each other, who meet through the Last Friend app after learning that they are both going to die today. The concept is definitely on the unique side, but it is a very interesting idea. Also, the cover art is beautiful (and I’m never one to be drawn in by covers)!
7) Starfish by Akemi Dawn Bowman (September 26)
As much as I’ve just finished saying that I’m not drawn in by covers, this was a book that immediately attracted me by it’s cover. It wasn’t until a few days later that I noticed the irony of a book called Starfish with a big picture of a jellyfish on the cover instead. This book is about a half-Japanese girl aiming to get into her dream art school, who goes on a tour of different schools to escape a difficult home life. I’m honestly not really sure what to expect from this book, but it seems to have a lot of potential. A few reviewers who have already rated ARC copies have commented that Kiko, the main character, has social anxiety and that is something I would love to see more of in books. I’m also interested in seeing how starfish tie into the story (if at all), since they are one of my favourite animals.
8) Words on Bathroom Walls by Julia Walton (July 4)
I found this book while browsing Goodreads lists of upcoming releases, and I was intrigued by the title. It reminded me of a line from the Simon and Garfunkel song The Sound of Silence, which says “The words of the prophets are written on the subway walls” — a line that’s always struck me as very powerful. This book is about a boy named Adam who has been diagnosed with schizophrenia, and desperately wants to keep his condition a secret from his classmates, especially the girl he is dating. The book has been compared to The Perks of Being a Wallflower, one of my favourite books, so I think it will be very interesting.
9) This Darkness Mine by Mindy McGinnis (October 10)
I very recently finished The Female of the Species by this author, and while I didn’t love it quite as much as others seemed to, I thought Mindy McGinnis was great at writing about darker themes. Her upcoming book is a psychological thriller about a girl named Sasha whose life becomes entangled with a boy named Isaac, who seems to know her a little too well. Honestly, I found the synopsis on Goodreads a bit confusing but I’m interested to see how the book plays out. Reviewers who have read the ARC have all been commenting about how dark this book is, so it seems like it could be very interesting.
10) The Love Letters of Abelard and Lily (December 26)
Given how late in the year the release date is, I’m a bit skeptical that this will actually end up happening this year. This book is about a girl who has ADHD and a boy with Asperger’s Syndrome who connect online over their mutual love of ancient love letters, but may have more trouble connecting in person. I absolutely love the concept of this book and I think it’s interesting to have both main characters having a different condition (for lack of a better word). This book has been described as both hilarious and heartbreaking, and I’m definitely looking forward to it!