Best Reads of 2017

Hello everyone,

I know this is suppose to be a Top 5 Wednesday, but I realized I can’t fit all of the great books I read this year in just 5 spots.

These are my best reads of 2017, some of the books may have been released in another year so these are the best books I read this year.

The Hate U Give by: Angie Thomas

One of my first 5/5s of the year this is a very important book, but it was also very riveting  from start to finish. I could not put this book down.

Scythe by Neal Shustermann

A world without diseases, and death is controled by Scythes. I really loved this book, which really took advantage of a great premise.

The works of Adam Silvera

I read three books by this author and all three were amazing. Even though well all of his books are sad (I almost had to fight back tears reading TBDATE on the train). Each story is also very unique as well. All dealing with real issues, I don’t usually pick up contempory but Adam Silvera made it worth it.

Truthwitch/Windwitch by Susan Dennard

Had to include both of these books in here. I read both of these this year and loved both of them. Truthwitch was a great first book with excellent world building and characters and Windwitch expanded a lot of world and developed the charcaters. I can’t wait to see how this series goes.

Want by Cindy Pon

Last year I read Serpentine and it was one of my favorite underrated books I read. Want did sometime different from what I previously read from Pon. While Serpentine was based around Chinese mythology, Want had a more Sci Fi vibe and it was amazing. Loved the setting and the two main characters and I can’t wait to see how this series continues.

Our Dark Duet by Victoria Schwab

Such a great and emotional ending to a great duology. This Savage Song was one of my favorites of last year and this year I read the epic conclusion. August and Kate are some of my favorite characters and it was another trying to fight back tears while reading on the train.

Beauty Queens by Libba Bray

This is the all-female Lord of the Flies, I want to see on the big screen. This was on my TBR for years and I finally got around to reading and loving it. It wasn’t just a stranded on a desert island story, it had a lot of commentaries about feminism and “girly” culture. I also had the pleasure of meeting her at Boston Book Festival and she was amazing in person.

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns by Julie C. Dao

This was one of my marathon reads that I read in a day, and it was such a page turner. This was a retelling of the Evil Queen from Snow White set in Asia. Since it was told from Xifeng’s perspective and it you really saw her dark decent through the pages.

Moxie by Jennifer Mathieu

A nice kick-ass feminist book which is about young girls fighting back against their schools sexist policies. It was inspired by the Riotgirls of the 90s. I also like that it had young girls working together.

The Nowhere Girls by Amy Reed

Another girls fighting back against their schools and this mainly deals with the rape of another student. While Moxie is told through mostly one POV, this one has multiple POVs, which really gives it a more ensemble feel to it and the Us chapters really makes the book stands out. Also part of me would love to see a crossover with the Moxie girls meeting the The Nowhere Girls and kicking ass.

Geekerella by Ashley Poston

The story of Cinderella set in a Sci Fi convention, of course I will read this. This was another nice contemporary read, which is a retelling of Cinderella. While the story of Cinderella has been retold multiple times, this one had a nice spin to it. Complete with a food truck named the Magic Pumpkin. While I don’t read a lot of contemporary this one was a great read.

Invictus by Ryan Graudin

This had me at the crew from Firefly in a Tardis, and it didn’t disappoint. I am always a sucker for time travel stories. The characters were fantastic in every way. I really wish this wasn’t a stand alone book and a full fledged series.

Warcross by Marie Lu

Marie Lu is one of my auto buy authors. She wrote two series that I really love; Legend and The Young Elites. She is also not afraid to write different genres. This one is a futuristic Sci Fi, which also incorporates the world of video games. Had so much engaging characters and a great setting.

Renegades by Marissa Meyer

This had me at superheroes. I was such a fan of the Lunar Chronicles and Renegades didn’t disappoint. It had such a great character driven story, that included engaging characters, and it has an ending that makes you want to see what happens next.

Those are my favorite reads of 2017. I feel like I may have left some books out but I think it was a good reading year. What are your favorite books you read this year? Let me know in the comments below.

 

 

Moxie by: Jennifer Mathieu (CW: Misogyny, Sexual Harassment and Sexual Assault)

Summary:

Vivian Carter is fed up. Fed up with her small-town Texas high school that thinks the football team can do no wrong. Fed up with sexist dress codes and hallway harassment. But most of all, Viv Carter is fed up with always following the rules.

Viv’s mom was a punk rock Riot Grrrl in the ’90s, so now Viv takes a page from her mother’s past and creates a feminist zine that she distributes anonymously to her classmates. She’s just blowing off steam, but other girls respond. Pretty soon Viv is forging friendships with other young women across the divides of cliques and popularity rankings, and she realizes that what she has started is nothing short of a girl revolution.

The Review:

This was a book I kinda picked up on a whim. I have seen some ARC reviews about this book, and it seemed like a pretty awesome premise. I thought it was an amazing book that should be required reading for any young girl.

The book is set in high school in which the football players rule the school and pretty much get away with anything, and it was one incident in the classroom in which Mitchell, the quarterback made a sexist remark to the a girl, Lucy and when Lucy defended herself the class was punished. Vivian basically tells Lucy how that was the norm around the school. After looking through her mothers old stuff and realize that she was a Riotgrrrl she decides to to start a zine highlighting the problems girls have in the school and the misogyny they face.

I love that I got to see the “zine” within the book, it really made it feel as if I was in on the action. I also like how it started off as something small but than grew and started becoming inspiring to all the girls at the school. While the audience knows Vivian is the author, I like that she made it anonymous, so it reminded me a lot of Mr. Robot. I also like that it started a movement within the school in which most the girls were involved in.

Most the issues that was covered was the sexual harassment brought on by the football players with the “bump n grind”, the schools sexist dress code policies, and lack of funding in the girls sports teams. They are all real issues that many young girls face today. It also touched upon how sexual assault often gets mishandled by school administrators.

Vivian as a main character was very engaging. I like how she wasn’t afraid at first to do the zine because she wanted to reach as many girls as possible. I also like that has started off as very shy and only having just a few friends, mainly Claudia and Lucy.

I also love the emphasis on female friendship. You really don’t see a lot of female friendships in YA novels and the fact that the relationship between the girls seemed real. There is also a romance in the book, but it is not the main focus of teh book. There were some other characters like Kiera and Emma who I did like, but I kinda wish they were a bit more fleshed out.

Viv’s boyfriend Seth is a very well written male character, I like that he isn’t the “brooding YA protagonist”. he is actually very supportive of Viv writing Moxie, and he also knows when to be a good feminist ally. While there is times he almost ventures into “not all men” he understands that there is stuff that he will never understand. I also like how their relationship was actually well done, while they did fight it wasn’t to the point where they have the second act break up, it was an actual meaningful relationship.

A minor criticism I have is that I wish the book was little more diverse. While Lucy is a Hispanic character, I felt that some of the side POC characters weren’t really fleshed out. But I do like how Viv discusses how the 90s RiorGrrrls didn’t include many POC and was willing to make a change with Moxie.

In the end, Moxie was an amazing book that is has a lot of good feminist themes. I think it should be required reading for all young girls because of its themes. I think the book will hopefully inspire young girls to get involved in activism. It was has some engaging characters with a nice story along with it.

Grade: 4.5/5