I’m in denial that I’m writing this post, because that would mean I have to acknowledge that we’re actually over halfway through 2016 and that’s something I refuse to do. 🙂 But, deny it all I want, we are in July, so I thought that now would be the perfect time to write my mid-year reading wrap-up.
At the time when I am writing this post, I have read a total of twenty-one books. Of those twenty-one books,
- 6 were historical fiction,
- 5 were classics,
- 4 were nonfiction,
- 4 were graphic novels,
- 1 was a crime novel,
- and 1 was a contemporary romance.
As far as star ratings go,
- 6 were 5 star reads,
- 10 were 4 star reads,
- 3 were 3 star reads,
- and 2 were 2 star reads.
My Favorite Reads So Far in 2016
As you can see, I rate most of the books I read four stars, which means I really, really enjoyed a book. If I give a book a five star rating, however, it means I thought it was absolutely amazing, I couldn’t put it down when I was reading it, and I kept thinking about it even once I turned the final pages. For that reason, and for the sake of time, I thought I would share my favorite books I’ve read thus far in 2016, or the six books I’ve given five-star ratings.
1. My Life on the Road by Gloria Steinem
A memoir of Gloria Steinem’s life travelling as an activist and the various different people she encounters on these travels, My Life on the Road is a fantastic piece of nonfiction, chock-full of quotable passages and stories that will inspire you to embrace even the most ordinary, everyday moments.
2. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
A well-beloved classic that needs no introduction, Great Expectations was my first introduction to Dickens and, needless to say, I absolutely loved it. I was expecting the writing in this to be quite dense, however I found Dickens’ prose very easy-going and actually extremely funny. The characters were engaging, the story line was captivating, and I was utterly entranced. There’s a reason Great Expectations is so highly regarded, and if you haven’t read it yet you definitely should.
3. The Secret Life of Violet Grant by Beatriz Williams
The Secret Life of Violet Grant is a historical fiction novel that flips back and forth between 1960s New York City and pre-WWI Europe as Vivian Schuyler defies the wishes of her family to uncover the mystery of what happened to her aunt, Violet Grant, fifty years earlier. A fast-paced historical read that will keep you on the edge of your seat until the very last pages.
4. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
This book is, without a doubt, my favorite book thus far of 2016. Even now, months after finishing it, I still find myself thinking about the characters (and getting irrationally angry about the ending, oh my goodness!). For those of you who don’t know, GWTW is a historical fiction novel set during the Civil War that tells the story of the beautiful Scarlett O’Hara and the dashing Rhett Butler. It is a beast of a book, coming in at just under 1,000 pages, but it is well, well worth the effort.
5. Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi
Another nonfiction piece, Reading Lolita in Tehran is Nafisi’s story of the seven female students she secretly gathers to read and study Western classics in the Islamic Republic of Iran. I know this book has mixed reviews, but I personally loved it. It’s a courageous book about using the arts to overcome oppression, and any book lover will appreciate this book’s emphasis on the power of literature and the written word.
6. Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald by Therese Anne Fowler
If you follow my blog, you’ll already know I love this book as I wrote an in-depth review of it, which you can find right here. Part historical fiction, part biographical fiction, Z tells the untold story of Zelda Fitzgerald, wife of the well-known author F. Scott Fitzgerald. A beautifully-written book that brings to life a remarkable woman that history has wrongfully neglected, Z is a must read for any historical fiction fan.
Have you read any of these six books? What are your favorite books so far in 2016? Let me know down in the comments. Until next time, adieu! 🙂