It is one of my favorite days of the year because I take a few minutes to sit down and share thoughts about all the books I have read so far. My reading goal for this year is 24 books, and I am on decent track right now to finish, sitting at about halfway to my goal. Starting back in January and up until today, here are the books I have read and a few thoughts about each.
1. Babylon's Ashes by James S.A. Corey
The Expanse is my favorite sci-fi book series right now, but this was probably my least favorite in the series so far. The ending was tense and fantastic, but the rest felt a little like it was stalling to fill the book.
2. Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
I did not watch the miniseries adaptation of this book, but I thought the book was excellent. If you are up for a novel about a pandemic that wipes out most of human population, this is an excellent read. I found it incredibly hopeful in a sea of hopeless sci-fi/dystopia.
3. The Fallen Star by Claudia Gray
The last novel in the current phase of Star Wars High Republic books, I found this novel thrilling, suspenseful, and sad. I continue to say that some of the most exciting storytelling in Star Wars right now is happening in the publishing world.
4. How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi
This was a required read for work this year, but one I willingly chose out of several options. I learned a lot and found a lot to ponder about how race intersects with so many different parts of society. Definitely not a book to breeze through without processing.
5. Scythe by Neal Shusterman
Within the Young Adult sci-fi genre there are a lot of tropes that are somewhat tiring at this point, but I am happy to say that this book weaves an interesting and compelling story without relying heavily on the standard tropes.
6. The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
Thanks to our school library's Lit Loot box initiative, I got my first taste of Faerie fantasy this year. I will say that I generally am not a fan, although I appreciated reading stories from the perspective of female characters, as it gave me a different flavor of fantasy than I am used to.
7. Wholehearted Faith by Rachel Held Evans, Jeff Chu
I have been a fan of Rachel Held Evans' books for a while, and her tragic death was a blow to Christianity. This book was published posthumously, and while there was not a lot of new material or ideas here, it was nice to have a refresh of some of Evans' thoughts.
8. A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
I will echo my thoughts from #6 above. I did like this one slightly more than The Cruel Prince, however.
9. Midnight Horizon by Daniel Jose Older
This Young Adult Star Wars novel had a few great moments, but I overall found the book just average, without adding much to the ongoing storyline of the High Republic.
10. Queen's Hope by E.K. Johnston
I really enjoyed the first two Padme Amidala novels by Johnston and had high expectations for this novel set in the middle of the Clone Wars, but the main storyline was mostly uninteresting. The side plot about Anakin and Padme's marriage was far more interesting and could have made for a more unique entry into Star Wars canon.
11. How to Fight Racism: Courageous Christianity and the Journey Toward Racial Justice by Jemar Tisby
Really the main thing I need to say about this book is that Jemar Tisby is a treasure and should be required reading for everyone who considers themselves part of the Christian faith. For that matter, it doesn't matter what faith you are, this book is so practical and helpful that it is a must read.
12. Brotherhood by Mike Chen
I read a lot of Star Wars novels, and most of them are good with flashes of greatness, but I loved this brand new novel set during the Clone Wars and exploring Obi-Wan and Anakin's friendship after Anakin's promotion to Jedi Knight. The novel explores the ethics of war and the nature of human relationships all while telling a really great story.
13. Parenting Forward: How to Raise Children with Justice, Mercy, and Kindness by Cindy Wang Brandt
This book is a great intro to some ways to approach parenting in our current complex world. I thought the book was a great, basic overview of a lot of ideas, but I would have loved a deeper dive into some of them.
What have you been reading so far this year? I would love to hear your recommendations!
I love my family and this is the place to find all of the adventures we experience.