6-22 The Fascinating 1920s with Lauri Robinson

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Best Books I Read in 2018 by Lynn Lovegreen

According to my Goodreads list, I read a dozen books in 2018. (I think there are actually more, if I include books I read for historical research or read but forgot to add to my book review list.) Some of the dozen were published last year, and some I just got around to reading in 2018—when your to-be-read list is as long as mine, it takes a while to get through it! 

I enjoyed all of these, so rather than choose one book as the best, I’m taking the liberty to come up with a few winners. Although I read some great books meant for adults, I chose books for younger audiences here to encourage our Romancing the Genres followers to try books and authors they may not know. 

Best Middle Grade Book: Hunger: A Tale of Courage by Donna Jo Napoli

Another great historical novel from Donna Jo Napoli! Engaging and well written as well as historically accurate--I couldn't wait to see how Lorraine would help her family survive the Irish potato famine.

I would classify it as MG because of the main character's age and issues, but teen and adult readers who are into history or Ireland would also enjoy it. Napoli also has a glossary, bibliography, and historical notes in the back.

Best Contemporary Young Adult: The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

You may have already heard about the novel or the recent movie. This book won lots of awards, and deserved them all. Starr is an African-American teen who lives in a poor black neighborhood and goes to a mostly white prep school. Her worlds collide when a friend is shot by a police officer.  

Brilliant, thoughtful, heart-breaking, and heart-warming! I recommend it for both teens and adults.

Best Historical Young Adult: Outrun the Moon by Stacey Lee

Mercy challenges people's expectations of Chinese-Americans while finding her place in an elite boarding school. Then the San Francisco earthquake provides challenges and opportunities of its own. Great historical details, and I loved the strong heroine! Highly recommended for teens and adults.

Best Heart-Warming Book: The Last True Love Story by Brendan Kiely

Loved this book! Brendan Kiely weaves teens, love, music, poetry, family, and more into this road trip homage to the Odyssey. 

Teddy's dad is dead and his mom is married to her job, so his grandpa has basically raised him. As Gpa is losing his memories to Alzheimer's, Teddy tries to recover them by taking him to where he met his wife. Teddy's friend (and crush) Corrina goes along to escape her stifling adoptive parents and get a chance to pursue the musical life she's always wanted. With parents and the police looking for them, they take the back roads across the country, and discover more than they expected. 

Lots of heart in this book--you will be rewarded on many different levels. Although this is an awesome book for teens, adult readers will also enjoy it.

Happy New Year! May you find lots of great books to read in 2019!

Are you on Goodreads, too? You can find me there at 

Lynn Lovegreen has lived in Alaska for fifty years. She taught for twenty years before retiring to make more time for writing. She enjoys her friends and family, reading, and volunteering at her local library. Her young adult/new adult historical romances are set in Alaska, a great place for drama, romance, and independent characters. See her website at www.lynnlovegreen.com. You can also find her on Facebook, Goodreads, and Pinterest.


Judith Ashley said...

Thanks for sharing books I most likely never would even know about. Love the diversity of the characters and the stories.

Lynn Lovegreen said...

Thanks, Judith. It's always fun to explore new books!