What was the best book you read in 2018?
As you know, I am an audiobook fiend. The amount of money I spend on Audible each year is embarrassing (it’s probably more than what I spend at Sephora annually, which is saying something) but there is nothing I love more than a good story and I am willing to pay any price for it.
I listened to over 40 titles this year alone. As I consume novels faster than I consume food, I wanted to share with you my favorite book from 2018...okay and 2017 because I didn't get to share last year and my favorite novel of 2017 was really, really good. Like, Obama-even-liked-it good.
And do not forget to tell me your favorite novel of 2018 in the comments below!
Everything I never Told You
by Celeste Ng
A profoundly moving story of family, history, and the meaning of home, Everything I Never Told You is both a gripping pause-resister and a sensitive family portrait, exploring the divisions between cultures and the rifts within a family and uncovering the ways in which mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, and husbands and wives struggle, all their lives, to understand one another. (Audible summary)
I loved, loved, this book. This may be because I am biracial and I have lost a sibling and therefor I gravitate towards stories similar to my own (spoilerrrrr, except not really because death is addressed in the first line of this book), but it is more likely I enjoyed this novel because Everything I Never Told You is an expertly crafted story dripping with emotion. And I mean dripping. As in your eyes will pour water and your tears of happiness/sadness/grief/what-have-you will mark the pages forever. Okay, I’m being a tad overdramatic…but all I’m trying to say is that this book is phenomenal and will have you sobbing.
Everything I Never Told You broke my heart, repaired it, and broke it again. And yet I know this is a story I will return to every year, as I have never read prose that has moved me in such a way. I cannot recommend it enough.
by Naomi Alderman
In The Power the world is a recognisable place: there's a rich Nigerian kid who lounges around the family pool; a foster girl whose religious parents hide their true nature; a local American politician; a tough London girl from a tricky family. But something vital has changed, causing their lives to converge with devastating effect. Teenage girls now have immense physical power - they can cause agonising pain and even death. And, with this small twist of nature, the world changes utterly. (Goodreads summary)
I tell everyone about this novel because it blew my goddamn mind.
I do not want to give anything away (outside of the description above), but The Power forces you to consider our current social climate, politics, "human nature," power dynamics, and the like.
If you enjoyed The Handmaid's Tale, 1984, or any other sci-fi novel focused on social commentary, this is the book for you. Plus, Obama named it as one of his favorite books of 2017 so what better reason to pick it up (besides my recommendation, of course)?
If you go for the audiobook version, Adjoa Andoh's narration is perfect. Her accents are amazing, her characters’ voices varied, and her delivery is exceptional. She creates suspense through pregnant pauses and quickened sentences, moments you may not pick up from written word alone.
This is a book for all badass women, who like other badass women, and wonder what the world may be like if we could flip the patriarchy on its head and then some.