Book Review, Books!, Discussion, Inspiration, Recommendations, Signal Boost

Best Books of the Decade

Hey all, Dani here.

I’ve seen a lot of blog posts and YouTube videos of people talking about their favorite books of the past decade (2010-2019), and it seemed like a fun idea, so why not do a post about so of my favorite books from the last decade. The problem was figuring out how to structure this post. I started using Goodreads in Fall 2010 because of library school, but I didn’t appreciate Goodreads or use it in an accurate fashion until something like 2013, so trying to use it to pick my favorite book of each year would be quite a bit inaccurate for a few years.

I saw Regan (PeruseProject on YouTube) set her Best Books of the Decade up by the year the book was published, and that seemed a bit more doable for me, even if it meant a bit more combing through my books.

So I started looking through my shelves, and for a couple years I only found one book that really stood out, but for other years I found 5 or 6 books. Basically I have narrowed each year down to one book, BUT I will have a few honorable mentions to add in as well, because well, I guess I just want to talk about a lot of books.

Okay, I’m going to start off with my honorable mentions.

2010: The Black Prism by Brent Weeks, The Magicians by Lev Grossman, Blood Bound by Rachel Vincent

2011: Bloodlines by Richelle Mead, The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson, Ready Player One by Ernest Cline, Hounded by Kevin Hearne

2012: No Dominion by C.E. Murphy, Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers, Kiss of Steel by Bec McMaster, Touch of Power by Maria V Snyder

2014: Dirty Magic by Jaye Wells

2015: Truthwitch by Susan Dennard, Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone, A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab, The Monster of Selkirk Book I: The Duality of Nature by C.E. Clayton, Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine

2016: The Alchemists of Loom by Elise Kova, And I Darken by Kiersten White, Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo, Borderline by Mishell Baker

2017: The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco, The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden, Victor Boone Will Save Us by David Joel Stevenston, Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde

2019: The Merciful Crow by Margaret Owen, Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir, Again, But Better by Christine Riccio, Seven Blades in Black by Sam Sykes

Whew, okay well there are all the honorable mentions. And with a list like that I bet you’re wondering which books made the final cut. Well, let’s get into them.

Okay, so starting with 2010, I have to choose The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson. I just had to include a Sanderson book on this list. Of course the book that sticks in my mind the most is Mistborn, but it was published before the decade covered in this post. I think Brandon Sanderson creates amazingly complex and varied worlds and characters. Reading his books transports me far away from reality and really makes me think about so many different topics, which is always a delight.

The book published in 2011 I have chosen is The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. I own this book in Hardcover, E-Book, and Audiobook, and I have enjoyed consuming it in each format. This story just feels so magical to me. The writing is beautiful and whimsical, and it sparks so much of my creativity and imagination that I can’t help but love it. Reading about this cast of characters and the circus they build is something I love to do every year or two.

My 2012 pick is Libriomancer by Jim C. Hines. Books about books or libraries are some of my favorites, and this one features a person with an ability to reach into a book and pull out an item from inside it. Now obviously there are limitations based on size and such, but for pretty much all of us bookworms would love to have the ability to either go into a book, or to bring something out from inside a book. This book, or rather this series, is wonderful for book lovers everywhere.

For 2013, the decision was easy, and that’s because I absolutely had to choose Colorworld by Rachel E Kelly. It was published at the end of 2013, and I discovered it at a convention in 2014, and since then this series has become one of my biggest obsessions and passions. And it all started by seeing that stunning Colorworld bubble cover and being drawn over to the table. Now we’re 8 books into the series, I’ve become a copy-editor for the series, Damian and I are going and working at conventions with Team Colorworld. It has been a whirlwind adventure, and I’m excited to see what this next decade brings to the story.

Okay, so we’ve made it to 2014, which means we’re basically at the halfway point for the decade. This was one of my absolute favorite books of the year, and coincidentally my favorite of the series. I’m talking about Secret by Brigid Kemmerer, which is the fourth book in the Elemental series (or the Merrick brothers series, which is how my brain usually thinks of it). I admit to loving all of the Merrick brothers, and these are stories that I was so absorbed into. There were so many great moments in these books, and I probably need to give the whole series a re-read sometime soon.

You’re Never Weird on the Internet (almost) by Felicia Day is my pick for 2015. This is the only non-fiction book on this list, though I could have considered Day’s 2019 release (Embrace Your Weird: Face Your Fears and Unleash Creativity) for the list as well. I think Felicia’s story is so wonderful and inspiring, and I have been a fan of “The Guild” and Geek & Sundry for a long time, so getting to read about Felicia’s nerdy creativity as well as her hard-working determination have truly helped to inspire me and help me start to figure out the path I want to take with my life, so I’m glad to have these books to help me along.

In 2016, I’m going to have to say that the book that has stuck with me most is Scythe by Neal Shusterman. I still honestly need to read The Toll, which is the final book in this trilogy. This was such a fascinating concept that was executed so brilliantly. I might actually have put off finishing the trilogy just a little bit because I’m not exactly ready for it to end. But I know I want to read them.

Welcome to 2017, where I’m not choosing a fantasy/sci-fi/dystopian book, but instead a contemporary book, because I have to choose Kat and Meg Conquer the World by Anna Priemaza. This was a wonderful geeky fandom story with a strong focus on female friendship, which is glorious and complex and complicated. This book will remain one of my favorites for a very long time.

Unlike the other years, I had such a difficult time finding books published in 2018 that stuck with me. That’s why there’s no honorable mentions above. I only found one book for this year, and that is Foundryside by Robert Jackson Bennett. The faction politics and the magic technology set-up was so utterly fascinating. I’m very excited to read the sequel to this book in a few months. I’m guessing that it’ll be just as amazing.

Okay, finally, it’s time to talk 2019, which was obviously the most difficult year to pick, but though I have so many favorite books from the year, there is one that I have been pretty much obsessive over since I heard about it in early 2018. And honestly here we are in early 2020 and I’m still obsessively talking about it. Of course I’m talking about Wicked Saints by Emily A Duncan. Considering my passion for Dungeons & Dragons, especially with my absolute adoration of the cleric class, this book definitely captured my interest. And now after reading the first two books in the trilogy, I can say that I’m still completely hooked on these characters and this story and world. I can’t wait to have a completed copy of book two in my hands in April, and then read the final book in 2021.

All right. Wow, this was a longer post than I originally thought. Oh well. That is all from me today, but I’ll be back soon with more bookish content. In the meantime, let me know some of your Best Books of the Decade, because I would love to see what books have stuck with you.

6 thoughts on “Best Books of the Decade”

      1. Oooh…yay! Good calls. The sequel to Foundryside is out in a couple months and I think Sanderson just finished writing the fourth book in the Stormlight Archive so it will likely be out by the end of the year.

        Liked by 1 person

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