Every year it seems that the earth’s journey around the sun gets a little shorter. I swear it was just January and then I made the mistake of blinking, and now it is the middle of December again. So before the new year begins, I thought I’d take a look back at the best books I read in 2018 (some are new, some older), and share them with you.
The Promise of Stardust by Priscille Sibley – An emotional legal battle between mother and son is the center of this story. When Matt’s wife Elle is left brain-dead after an accident, he plans on taking her off of life support. That is, until he finds out she’s pregnant. He insists she’d want to be kept alive until the baby is born. But Matt’s mother has Elle’s living will, which expressly states that Elle does not want to be on life support. Who will the judge side with? As a mother, the struggles in this book felt especially poignant.
Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis – I typically read fiction, but this book was chosen one month for my book club. I had heard great things about it, and I wasn’t disappointed. With humor and a no-nonsense manner, Hollis addresses lies that she – and most women – have struggled with at some point. Lies about how we are supposed to look and behave, about our relationships, our self-worth. She talks about her experiences and gives tips on how to move past these lies. While reading it, I often felt like she was talking directly to me. This is a book I’m going to keep on my shelf and revisit whenever my subconscious needs a good reminder.
Misery by Stephen King – As an avid reader, I hate to admit that Misery is the first Stephen King novel I’ve read. His writing style wasn’t my favorite, but the story kept me hooked. A famous novelist named Paul Sheldon crashes his car and wakes up in the home of his number one fan, Annie Wilkes. He is badly injured and soon starts to realize that Annie isn’t the sweet nurse she seems to be. This book had me chilled to the bone and unable to put it down.
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng – On one side of the story is the wealthy and rigid Elena Richardson and her family. And on the other side are her new tenants — the mysterious artist Mia Warren and her teenage daughter, Pearl. As Pearl befriends the Richardson children, and as a custody battle over an adopted baby takes place in the neighborhood, the relationship dynamics between mother and child are examined along with the cost of secrets. I love how this book really delves into the motivations of the characters.
Woman of God by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro – This book was another one that was hard to put down. Brigid Fitzgerald is a brave doctor with a strong faith and a never-give-up attitude, and if rumors are correct, she could become the first female Pope. The story follows her work and her hardships around the globe. The descriptions of her time in a war-torn Sudan were especially heart-wrenching and had me teary-eyed. Definitely a thought-provoking tale.
At the End of the Road by Grant Jerkins – Set in 1976, ten year-old Kyle Edwards causes an accident when riding his bike around a corner on a dirt road. Instead of helping the young woman who crawls out of the car, he flees back home, afraid of getting in trouble. Later when he finds out that the woman disappeared without a trace, he still keeps his secret… even when he finds out the grim truth. If you like suspense, give this book a try.
Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult – Picoult is one of my favorite authors and this book, although a little strange, cemented that fact. Young Jenna Metcalf sets out to find out what happened to her mother, Alice, who disappeared more than a decade before. Believing her mother would never have willingly abandoned her, she turns to the journals Alice kept on her elephant research for clues, and asks a psychic and an ex cop for help along the way. I found all of the information on how elephants grieve really interesting, and the twist at the end was one I didn’t see coming.
The Silent Corner by Dean Koontz – Koontz is another of my favorite authors. I’ve never read a book of his I haven’t loved. This tale features FBI agent Jane Hawk. After her husband commits suicide and leaves behind a disturbing note, Jane discovers that the suicide rate of happy, healthy, and successful people like her husband had increased dramatically. She takes leave to find out why, and soon finds herself and her son being threatened by some unseen and unknown group. The tension and suspense in this book kept me turning page after page. The Silent Corner is the first in the Jane Hawk series, and I can’t wait to read the next one.
What are the best books you read this year? Any books you can’t wait to read in 2019?