My Favorite Books of the First Half of 2019

So far, 2019 has been a pretty great reading year for me. I (somehow) managed to read a total of NINETY books by the end of June, so I had ample opportunity to fit in some amazing books. And I fully took advantage of that. I’ve read some seriously amazing books already this year, including a few that just might make my all-time favorites list.

Here are my top ten books so far this year (in no particular order):

The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett. This book had been sitting on my shelves for over a year. I put off reading it because it was intimidating (973 pages!), but decided this is the year I would no longer let big books scare me. And I’m so glad I did, because this ended up being a new favorite book. It is just so compelling and the characters are amazing. I still haven’t been able to stop thinking about this book.

Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid. I read The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo last year and absolutely loved it. I was so excited to get my hands on TJR’s newest novel this year. And it did not disappoint.

The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs by Steve Brusatte. This was one of the first books I read this year, and I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it. I’m sure everyone I know would like me to stop talking about dinosaurs, but they were just so fascinating. I know it’s scary seeing them in movies, but learning the actual facts about them (like how much titanosaurs weighed) is mind blowing.

A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles. This was one of my five-star predictions, and it was definitely an accurate one. I really loved this book. It reminded me how much I enjoy historical fiction, and how interesting and unique it could be.

Becoming by Michelle Obama. This was a great memoir. I learned a lot about the Obamas, which I really enjoyed (because I miss them). But, more than that, it was incredibly inspiring. It made me respect Michelle Obama even more than I already did.

In an Absent Dream by Seanan McGuire. I’m a huge fan of the Wayward Children series, and this one was amazing. The world was so different than that of the first three books, and I loved that about this book. I just love the world system in this series, and I cannot wait to read about more of them.

The Night Tiger by Yangsze Choo. This was an unexpected favorite. It’s historical fiction with mystery, romance, and a little mythology thrown in. I was completely absorbed in this story, and loved every minute.

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens. I’d initially hesitated to pick this up because of the hype. But when it was recommended to me personally (by someone with great taste in books) I gave in. And I loved it. It has history, nature, romance, and even a little mystery, which is right up my alley. I loved this one, and I’m so glad I ended up reading it.

The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World by Melinda Gates. This was one of my most anticipated books of the year, because I really admire Bill and Melinda gates, and think they have great taste in books. This book is brilliant. It’s all about how empowering women can improve life for everyone. Gates has first-hand experience with her foundation and travels across the world. I learned so much from this book, and I think everyone should read it.

Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston. I was just as surprised as anyone that one of my favorite books of the year turned out to be a romance novel with millennial characters. Because I tend to stay away from romance (or, I did before I read this one) and millennial characters annoy me more often than not. But this book is amazing and brilliant and so much fun! I loved reading it and cannot stop recommending it!

Some of these books changed how I see the world or motivated me to be a better person, and some of them were just fun reads, but I loved each and every one of them. I’m extremely happy with my reading year so far, and am looking forward to some more amazing books this year!

What’s your favorite read of 2019 so far?

18 thoughts on “My Favorite Books of the First Half of 2019

  1. I loved Red, White and Royal Blue, Becoming and Daisy Jones too! And RWRB is probably my favourite so far, or If We Were Villains by M.L Rio, or The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell!

    1. I loved If We Were Villains! I read it a couple years ago. I haven’t read The Last Magician, but I have a copy, so maybe I’ll try it soon.

  2. The Pillars of the Earth is massive but 100% worth it! I first read it in 2016, and fell in love with Ken Follet’s histrical fiction. (I have to say that I don’t love his crime / thrillers very much).

    1. Agreed! I definitely want to read more of his historical fiction. His thrillers don’t really seem like my cup of tea, but I am very curious about the Century Trilogy (which I should read, since I own all three books).

  3. Definitely just saved this post so that I can all these books to my list! I’m currently listening to Becoming on Audible but I’m struggling a little bit with it. I think I’m going to end up persevering.

    Brilliant post xo

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