Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.
This is ten of the best – not necessarily an absolute top ten because my thoughts have changed a LOT while writing this; there’ve been so many incredible ones released! I’ve also stuck rigidly to books released in the first half of the year that I’ve actually READ this year as well – check out last week’s post for some of my favourite upcoming ones, while there are lots that I was lucky enough to read early. Of ones I read prior to 2016, special mentions to How Hard Can Love Be? by Holly Bourne, The Shadow Keeper by Abi Elphinstone, and The Crooked Sixpence by Jennifer Bell as superb.
Mind Your Head by Juno Dawson with advice from Dr Olivia Hewitt (illustrated by Gemma Correll) – Brilliant no-nonsense non-fiction guide to lots of different aspect of mental health. I love the way Juno and Olivia break things down really clearly; it’s supportive in tone and really humorous making it an enjoyable read as well as an informative one.
Emily Sparkes and the Disco Disaster/Emily Sparkes and the Backstage Blunder by Ruth Fitzgerald – Can’t separate these two fantastic contemporary MG books! The Emily Sparkes series is up there with Susie Day’s Pea’s Book (and spin-off Secret series) as my favourite recent MG contemporary series. Emily is such a fabulous character and the humour found in these books is superb. I really love her relationships with her friends and parents, and I’m unsure if there are more Emily Sparkes books planned but I’m definitely hoping there will be!
Eden Summer by Liz Flanagan – One of several on this list which has an outstanding setting, Liz Flanagan’s debut is a tense thriller which sees lead character Jess try to work out what’s happened to her best friend Eden who has just disappeared. We see Jess wander around the Yorkshire countryside trying to find clues as to her friend’s potential whereabouts but we also see flashbacks which help us realise what led to this moment – probably the best use of flashbacks I’ve seen since Tess Sharpe’s incredible Far From You. I adored the central friendship here, as well!
The Girl From Everywhere by Heidi Heilig – Wonderful YA book about a girl who travels through space and time on a pirate ship with her father, who is desperately trying to return to late 19th century Hawaii and save the life of her mother – even if it results in her being wiped from existence. I thought the world-building here – particularly Hawaii before it became part of the USA – was phenomenal and loved the relationship between Nix and love interest Kashmir.
This Song Is (Not) For You by Laura Nowlin – Really outstanding contemporary about a love triangle between a girl and a boy who’ve had mutual crushes on each other for ages but never acted on them until a new boy joins their band and sets things in motion. This REALLY stood out for me as one of the boys is asexual and it’s the first novel I’ve read with an ace lead involved in a romantic relationship. It makes my heart sing to see such amazingly positive ace rep and it’s something I’m really hoping for more of in the future!
Radio Silence by Alice Oseman – My UKYA book of the year so far, Alice Oseman’s second novel is a stunning story