Sunday, December 6, 2015
Jeffe's Top Three Most Memorable Books of 2015
I like that way of putting it - the most memorable, not necessarily our favorites. It's an interesting lens. However, to do this post, I still started with my Goodreads report for 2015. I like Goodreads for that, how they can give me a decent sample of my reading year. It is, however, only a sample.
I added 47 books so far to Goodreads for 2015, while I have 114 on my personal spreadsheet. This is because I only add the books I'll be rating highly - OR that I didn't read for other reasons, such as for a contest or for crit. Thus, 29 of those 47 have five-star ratings. Definitely a skewed sample.
To determine most memorable reads, then, I looked at my personal spreadsheet. This was fun exercise, because I went through and highlighted the ones that stood out most strongly in my memory. (Or that I remembered at all - several I couldn't dredge up any details in my mind.
I initially highlighted six books as the ones that stood out most. Two were easy to eliminate from my top three because one I DNF'd (did not finish) because I hated it so much. (And it was a much lauded book, so that was just me.) The other I hated because it didn't have an ending. (The author calls it a cliffhanger, but it's really the story stopping in the middle of the arc.) I'm not about the hate, so I didn't want to discuss those. Other people loved those books, so it's all good.
Of the remaining four, I gave Grace Draven's RADIANCE honorable mention. (Though top billing with the cover above.) The main reason for this is, of my top four, two were books not published in 2015, which means I can't nominate them for any awards. For 2016 I'm going to make a concerted effort to prioritize books written in that year, so I *can* give them nominations boosts. Hopefully the new TBR spreadsheet will help with that effort! Anyway, RADIANCE is up for Best Fantasy Romance of 2015, so it's getting love.
Thus, my picks for three most memorable!
THE ART OF ASKING
I loved Amanda Palmer's TED talk on this topic and the book is even better. I've gushed about it in a number of places, especially as jewels come back to me. I really think every creative, and maybe everyone who thinks they aren't creative, should absolutely read this book. If you have an aspiring writer on your holiday list, give them a copy of this book. They'll thank you for it.
PRINCE OF SHADOWS
I read this book *very* early in 2015, entirely because reader/reviewers I trust recommended it so highly. And WOW! I loved this book so hard. I would never have picked it up on my own from the description. It's a retelling of Romeo and Juliet from Benvolio's point of view, which does nothing to tell you how freaking compelling this book is. Just ... go read it and then we can squeal together, okay?
THE BEST OF ALL POSSIBLE WORLDS
This is another book I picked up on recommendation. Okay, the recommendation might have said something like "slow burn romance with a Spock hero" and I was instantly sold. What can I say? Star Trek shaped my pre-adolescent brain and I'm weak. Then the opening blew me away. It's a wonderful, unusual science fiction story. I can't praise it enough.
Posted by Jeffe Kennedy
Labels: Amanda Palmer, Grace Draven, Karen Lord, Most Memorable Books of 2015, Prince of Shadows, Rachel Caine, Radiance, The Art of Asking, The Best of All Possible Worlds
Jeffe Kennedy is a multi-award-winning and best-selling author of romantic fantasy. She is the current President of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) and is a member of Novelists, Inc. (NINC). She is best known for her RITA® Award-winning novel, The Pages of the Mind, the recent trilogy, The Forgotten Empires, and the wildly popular, Dark Wizard. Jeffe lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico. She is represented by Sarah Younger of Nancy Yost Literary Agency.