my favorite reads of 2016

“It’s possible that all labels are curses. Unless they are on cleaning products. Because in my opinion it’s not really a great idea to see people as one thing. Every person has lots of ingredients to make them into what is always a one-of-a-kind creation. We are all imperfect genetic stews.” ~Holly Goldberg Sloan, counting by 7s

unnamed‘Tis the season for yearly reviews and planning for the upcoming year. If you’re familiar with my blog, you know that regular review and reflection is important to me and something I complete on a weekly basis. While a more comprehensive annual review will be forthcoming, as an avid reader I felt it important to include a  post focused on the books I most enjoyed in 2016. Plus, I selfishly hope my reader friends will return the favor and share the titles they loved as well so I can add them to my to-read list.

The past year included a big job change for me, which resulted in a tripling of my commute time. Thankfully, Denver has a fantastic public-transit system including trains that not only greatly reduce my traffic-induced road rage but also provide ample reading time. As a result, my page count was significantly increased in the latter part of the year.

So, without further adieu, my top five favorite reads of 2016 — in no particular order.

  • milk and honey: Rupi Kaur puts into words through her poetry basically every thought I’ve ever had — seriously. what an amazingly talented young woman! I look forward to following her work for years to come.
  • The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah: despite its length (440 pages), I devoured this book in a few days (thanks, RTD). I’m a sucker for historical fiction — especially anything from the early 20th century. The character development was fantastic and plot kept me interested throughout and the twist at the end was a great bonus.
  • GRIT: Passion, Perserverance and the Science of Success by Angela Duckworth:  The author is an extremely talented storyteller, which is sometimes lacking in nonfiction books. The contents were timely as I read it a month or so after starting my new job and was able to apply some of the concepts immediately. I will definitely refer back to this book many times.

“Enthusiam is common. Endurance is rare.” ~Angela Duckworth, GRIT

  •  Counting by 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan: My best friend recommended this book right before I left for a trip and I ended up staying in my hotel the first night in San Francisco to finish it. I fell in love with the main character and couldn’t put it down.
  • Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert: Another example of an excellent storyteller, Gilbert drew me in and kept me there until I finished the book. I think I dog-eared every other page and underlined nearly the entire book. I loved it so much that I saw Gilbert when she came to town this fall. I’m not surprised though, I adored Gilbert’s other nonfiction works — Eat, Pray, Love and Committed.

“Because if you love and want something enough — whatever it is — then you don’t really mind eating the shit sandwiches that come with it.” ~Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic

Honorable mentions: The Sound of Things Falling, The Girl on the Train, Love Warrior

A peak at what’s on my list for 2017 (so far):

  • Wonder  by RJ Palacio(started last night and will likely finish before 2017)
  • My Own Words (hope to finish before 2017)
  • book club choices (The Lost Girls: An Unsolved Mystery, 10% Human, The Accidental Empress, more TBD)
  • Lunch with Buddha 
  • Man’s Search for Meaning
  • The Girl with the Back Tattoo
  • Fig
  • Presence
  • The Well Life
  • The Artist’s Way
  • Re-reads: She’s Come Undone, The War of Art, Daring Greatly

What about you? What were your page-turners for 2016? What’s on your list for the coming year?

For a full list of what I read in 2016 and to keep up on what I’m reading year-round, connect with me on Goodreads or view my account via the menu on this blog.

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