Top 10 Books of 2019

Happy New Year Bookwyrms!! I know, I know we’ve been in this New Year for at least 6 days. But in my defense, I’ve been celebrating with family and I may or may not have gotten sick lol

This upcoming week, will be filled with all of my planned end of year blog posts as well as a few unexpected posts sprinkled in.

So without the further adieu, let’s jump into my top 10 books of 2019!

10.  Archenemies (Renegades # 2) by Marissa Meyer 

Read in: January 2019 

Finished in: January 2019

Rating: 4 Palm Leaves 

Brief Synopsis: (taken from my full review

In Archenemies, both Nova and Adrian are determined to complete their own [personal] missions. Nova is revitalized by her goal to take down the Renegades from the inside out. Adrian, who [believes he was] so close to figuring out [exactly] how his mother died, does not want to believe all his hopes had been for nothing after finally facing Nightmare. However their [Nova and Adrian’s] feelings for each other is constantly at war with that they want to accomplish. Not to mention more secrets, more lies and betrayal. Is there a world where they aren’t mortal enemies? Where their secrets are not holding them apart?

Personal Take: I loved almost everything about this book! From the cinematic writing style, to the well developed main and side characters to the major theme and plot point, Good versus Evil. 

Quote from my review: “The major theme, Good vs. Evil, makes you question whether there are distinct [division] between the two, or are we all just a product of our environment and [consequential] decisions.”

The only reason it didn’t get a full five palm leaves is due to a couple of scenes being a bit long and therefore muddling with the pace of the story.

9. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Read in: March 2019

Finished in: March 2019

Rating: 4 Palm Leaves

Brief Synopsis: Follow along the epic love story of the fabulous Evelyn Hugo, actress extraordinaire. There may be some unexpected turbulence and whatever you do, do not enter with preconceived notions or ideas. Evelyn Hugo may have lived an incredible life, at least in the public eye, but who she really is, is revealed and pulled apart piece by piece by writer, Monique Grant. 

Personal Take: So this may have been one of the most hyped TJR books. And because of said hype, I waited a while to pick it up and I’m so glad I did. This book took me on a journey of unexpected twists and turns. Although I will say, one of the big reveals was a bit on the predictable side. Overall, this book was enjoyable and entertaining. 

8. On The Come Up by Angie Thomas 

Read in: February 2019

Finished in: February 2019

Rating: 5 Palm Leaves 

Brief Synopsis: (Good Reads Synopsis)

Sixteen-year-old Bri wants to be one of the greatest rappers of all time. Or at least make it out of her neighborhood one day. As the daughter of an underground rap legend who died before he hit big, Bri’s got big shoes to fill. But now that her mom has unexpectedly lost her job, food banks and shutoff notices are as much a part of Bri’s life as beats and rhymes. With bills piling up and homelessness staring her family down, Bri no longer just wants to make it—she has to make it.

Personal Take: It is no secret that I am an Angie Thomas fan and I couldn’t wait to read her sophomore book! On the Come Up did not disappoint. I mean I wish I was as cool as Bri when I was sixteen years old. And just witnessing young people take action against injustice in a loud and proud way makes my heart swoon. Absolutely adored this book.

7. Meet Cute by Helena Hunting

Read in: May 2019

Finished in: May 2019

Rating: 5 Palm Leaves 

Brief Synopsis: Famous Teen Male Hearthrob, Daxton gets plowed into by young 1L Law Student, Kailyn and the rest is history. Except, they had this weird friendship/competition while in law school and then Daxton does something unforgivable to Kailyn and she’s hated and avoided him for eight years. That is until, life decided to have them crash into each other once again. Will they each be able to move on from the incident eight years ago? Will love finally bloom and blossom between them?

Personal Take: I absolutely adored Meet Cute! But don’t let the cutesy cover fool you, this is definitely not a heart-eyes romance read. There are some heart-wrenching moments that were unexpected that I enjoyed. Overall, I loved the main characters, the storyline and plot and definitely recommend picking this up. 

6. With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo

Read in: June 2019

Finished in: June 2019

Rating: 4 Palm Leaves 

Brief Synopsis: (Goodreads Synopsis)

With her daughter to care for and her abuela to help support, high school senior Emoni Santiago has to make the tough decisions, and do what must be done. The one place she can let her responsibilities go is in the kitchen, where she adds a little something magical to everything she cooks, turning her food into straight-up goodness. Still, she knows she doesn’t have enough time for her school’s new culinary arts class, doesn’t have the money for the class’s trip to Spain — and shouldn’t still be dreaming of someday working in a real kitchen. But even with all the rules she has for her life — and all the rules everyone expects her to play by — once Emoni starts cooking, her only real choice is to let her talent break free.

Personal Take: Food AND Travel all wrapped up in this gorgeous stunning book? Sign me up! (I mean, my blog is literally called Eat Travel Read lol) Acevedo has done it again. From start to finish I was pulled and wrapped into Emoni’s life, struggles and triumphs. And to watch her character develop and grow throughout the story was amazing and fascinating. Not to mention, a chance in a lifetime opportunity to spend a week in Seville, Spain to learn from culinary master chefs! With the Fire on High captivated me with every chapter and every page.  

5. Things You Save in a Fire by Katherine Center

Read in: July 2019

Finished in: July 2019

Rating: 5 Palm Leaves 

Brief Synopsis: Cassie Hanwell is a badass female firefighter with the largest chip of the century on her shoulder. With years of family drama and other betrayals weighing her down, will she discover the joys and light life can bring? 

Personal Take: I just re-read my full review on this book, and to be honest I summed it up the best way possible then. So I will just implore you to check out my full review if you haven’t read this amazingness of a book yet. 

4. Kingdom of Souls by Rena Barron

Read in: August 2019

Finished in: August 2019

Rating: 4.75 Palm Leaves 

Brief Synopsis: Goodreads Synopsis 

Born into a family of powerful witchdoctors, Arrah yearns for magic of her own. But each year she fails to call forth her ancestral powers, while her ambitious mother watches with growing disapproval.

There’s only one thing Arrah hasn’t tried, a deadly last resort: trading years of her own life for scraps of magic. Until the Kingdom’s children begin to disappear, and Arrah is desperate to find the culprit.

She uncovers something worse. The long-imprisoned Demon King is stirring. And if he rises, his hunger for souls will bring the world to its knees… unless Arrah pays the price for the magic to stop him.

Personal Take: Another book I’d fail to summarize in a quick way. It is honestly my FAVORITE fantasy read of the year and I definitely recommend checking out my full review

3. Becoming by Michelle Obama

Read in: February 2019

Finished in: February 2019

Rating: 5 Palm Leaves

Personal Take: Honestly, all of my thoughts and emotions are perfectly articulated in my review, Dear Chapter 17. But, I will say I’ve grown a deeper love and appreciation for this beautiful, and amazingly hardworking woman! Thank you for gifting a piece of yourself to us, my forever First Lady!

2. Get a Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert

Read in: November 2019

Finished in: November 2019

Rating: 5 Palm Leaves

Brief Synopsis: (taken from my mini-review on Instagram)

Chloe Brown creates a “get a life” list after a close brush with death. One of those items to be checked off, may or may not involve having meaningless but thoroughly enjoyable sex. Add in a swoony, tatted, painter, bad boy, handy man (wow thats a lot of descriptors lol) Redford Morgan, and she just might be able to cross that and a few other items off her list successfully. But will it actually be meaningless or the start of a great relationship. (taken from my mini-review on instagram) 

Personal Take: This is the second book this entire year I gushed about! I love absolutely everything about this book. From the witty banter to the relatable struggles, it was the romance I needed for the time I needed it. Chloe Brown is fiercely independent and has been let down so many times in her life. And Redford was every bit of the best male swoon character! The romance is absolutely swoon worthy and a bit steamy in this one.

1.The Write Escape by Charish Reid 

Read in: August 2019

Finished in: September 2019

Rating: 5 Palm Leaves 

Brief Synopsis: Goodreads Synopsis

Take one heartbroken Chicago girl

Literary editor Antonia Harper had it all—the career, the man, the future. That was then. Now Antonia is jobless, alone and at a crossroads. What better time to travel the world? A solo honeymoon on the Emerald Isle will be like hitting the reset button. No distractions, no drama.

Add some luck o’ the Irish

Aiden Byrnes may be a literature professor, but words fail him when he meets the woman staying in the cottage next door. Tully Cross is meant to be a sleepy little village, and he’s meant to be on a working holiday—not a vacation, and most definitely not with his beautiful neighbor.

And you get some mighty good craic

They say laughter is the best medicine—and as it turns out, superhot sex isn’t so bad either. Antonia and Aiden’s spark quickly grows into what could be something special, if they’re willing to take the leap. Ending up an ocean apart is unthinkable, and when real life comes calling, there’s no ignoring that leap anymore…

Personal Take: And finally, what you’ve all been waiting for: My Number One Book of the Year goes to this amazingly written masterpiece of a romance! This is hands down my most recommended book of 2019! I think I shouted from the proverbial mountain tops how much I loved The Write Escape for the past four months. I loved the characters and their development, the writing style, the pace of the story and of course the romance between Antonia and Aiden. If you haven’t picked up this beauty yet, I don’t know what you’re waiting for.

And here we have it! Ten Books that made me feel all the great feels of story telling!

I HIGHLY recommend checking out all of these wonderful books and I can’t wait to see where my reading will take me in 2020!