Book Reviews, Commentary, Teachable Books

Favorite Books of 2015

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!  The time when I list my favorite books of 2015!  Here is my very eclectic list:


1. We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

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I absolutely, positively, LOVED this book, and recommend it to everyone I know who loves an intense YA drama.  I cried and cried at the end.  A beautiful, well-told, and well-constructed book.


2.  The Girl on the Train, by Paula Hawkins

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Lots of parallels are made between this book and Gone Girl, which I didn’t like at all.  The difference for me was that The Girl on the Train never crosses into the realm of ridiculous, like Gone Girl does.  I loved the somewhat unlikeable and unreliable narrator.  This was a real page-turner, for me.


3.  So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed, by Jon Ronson

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I’m fascinated by how people behave online, so even though I didn’t love everything about this book, I find myself referencing it often.  Reading it forces you to re-evaluate your own online relationships, how you present yourself online, and how others do as well.


4.  The Book of Strange New Things, by Michael Faber

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I almost never read science fiction.  It just isn’t my genre.  However, I picked this one up and couldn’t put it down.  I loved how it was told– from the perspective of a religious man, far into the future, on a planet far away.  His relationship with his wife back on Earth is at the heart of how he understands life on the new planet, as well as the afterlife.


5.  Everything You Ever Wanted, by Jillian Lauren

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This is a beautiful memoir about adoption, but for me it was more than that.  This story forced me to look at parenthood as a whole, how we support mothers in our society (ahem… a post for another time), and how we support one another. I’ve thought of this book often since finishing it, especially in moments of subconscious judgement of other parents.


6.  The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender, by Leslye Walton

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I quite literally picked up this book because I found the cover stunning.  (Yes, we do judge books by their covers!) But what I found was a first for me– accessible magical realism for young adults, set in the United States.  I loved the use of language and the lovely story, and will recommend it for any teacher struggling to teach the concept of magical realism.

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