Week 26 of this year just zoomed by, and that means we have all successfully crossed the half year mark for the year 2016. Yay for that! It has been a while since I have done a Top 10 Tuesday list, so I thought it did be nice to do one today. When I thought about what it is that I can write an interesting list about, I figured I could give you a half year update on my reading challenge.
I had set myself a goal of 25 books from 25 different categories for this year’s reading challenge. If you remember I had posted a top 10 list with my plan for the first 10 categories. Although I did not entirely stick to the original plan, I am happy to say that I have read 16 books so far from my goal of 25 books. That’s an accomplishment by 64%, which means for the half year mark I am ahead by 14%. Yea, yea that’s the analyst in me talking.
Anyway, I decided for this list, I will write about all the books/categories that I finished reading, I have also added the link to the Goodreads page of each of these books in case you want to look it up or buy a copy. So without any further ado, here goes!
- The Lake House
The Lake House by Kate Morton was one of those books with an either or review. People either loved it or they hated it. I was one of those who loved it. I loved the way the author built up the mystery in the novel. The ever changing timeline and POV’s were slightly confusing at first, however, you quickly get used to it. The climax seemed too good to be true, yet had a feel good factor to it. I placed this book in the “Mystery/Thriller” category of my challenge.
My rating 4.5/5
- The 5th Wave
The 5th Wave is the first book of a trilogy by Rick Yancey. It falls in the science fiction category and was described as a high-octane alien invasion plot with comparisons to Ender’s Game. I did not understand the comparison to Ender’s Game for this book. Don’t get me wrong, I loved Ender’s Game (I am a sucker for sci-fi!), however, save for the military training sequence and the fact that both books had an alien attack, there’s nothing in common between these 2 books. The 5th Wave was a more mellowed down, part by part attack version without the high energy that was found in Ender’s Game. That’s not to say that I did not enjoy the book, I really liked it and ended up reading the 2nd part ‘The Infinite Sea‘ and the last part of the trilogy titled ‘The Last Star’ as well. See why I try to stay away from trilogies!! I placed this book in the “Story Set in the Future” category.
My rating 3.8/5
- The Girl on the Train
This was by far one of the best books I have read this year. The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins is a mystery/thriller from the word go. The fact that the author managed to maintain the intrigue of the plot up until the very end is commendable. What I really liked was the climax which the author managed to keep as realistic as possible. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good suspense/mystery thriller. I placed this on the “Book with Green on Cover” category.
My rating 4.5/5
- Black Five
Fantasy has never really been a genre I prefer, so when I saw the category “Book with Magic” I was unsure of what to choose. With a little help from some of my blogging friends, I picked up Black Five by J. Lynn Bailey. I will not say that I did not enjoy the book, it was an interesting read but will I read again from the fantasy genre? I highly doubt that! This is a good read for anyone who enjoys the fantasy genre.
My rating 3.9/5 (based solely on the plot, character development, and language)
- Menaka’s Choice
Kavita Kane is one of my most favored Indian authors. Menaka’s Choice is her 3rd book. Kane’s books are based on Indian Mythology. Her stories always feature a very strong female protagonist which is exactly why I chose this book for the category “Book with Female Lead”. It was a read I really enjoyed, I am a total sucker for ancient Indian, Greek and Egyptian mythology-based stories, so if you are like me, you will love this book.
My rating 4.3/5
- Run For It
The 3rd book of The Bucks County Series authored by my dear friend Dr. Meg Sorick tells the story of Joni Cooper and her relationship with the oldest Quinn brother, Graham. Having already read the first 2 books from the series, I was eagerly waiting for Run For It. Needless to say, I absolutely enjoyed reading this book which I placed into the “Book Published in 2016” category.
My rating 4.2/5
- 14 Days to Die
This was one of the books which I received through Netgalley. The title was apt for me to place it in the “Book with Number on Title” category. I was really excited about A.B Whelan’s 14 Days to Die when I read the book blurb. The story started off well and I liked the pace the author maintained. However, somewhere in the middle, the climax is given away. I continued to read hoping for a surprise twist towards the end of the book but that never came! I was a little disappointed because it was a great plot that had the potential to become a suspense thriller but fell flat despite a great beginning.
My rating 3.4/5
- The Martian
I am sure everyone here has either read the book or watched the movie. This book was on my reading list for a while. I used the opportunity of reading “Book that Became a Movie” and read Andy Weir’s The Martian. I love, love, loved this book, and that is not only because I love science fiction, it was the technicalities or the technical details involved that had me so impressed with the book. Brilliant, undeniably brilliant!
My rating 5/5 (Yes, I give it a full 5!)
- The Writing Life
When I started reading Annie Dillard’s The Writing Life I knew there was something special about the book and I was right. It was a book bursting with metaphors and prose bristling with incidence that provided a glimpse into a writer’s life. With this book, I checked off the category “NonFiction Book”.
My rating 4.8/5
- Can Love Happen Twice?
I wondered why this challenge even had a category “Book with Bad Reviews”. Perhaps, to force a reader to look beyond reviews while reading a book. So I opted to read Ravinder Singh’s Can Love Happen Twice? given the number of bad reviews, I saw for it. Sadly, the reviews were all spot on! I struggled to finish this book and was angry at the end for wasting my time reading ‘crap’, but yea that’s another category checked off!
My rating 1/5 (I think I am being too nice here giving this book a 1!)
Some of the other books that I read and enjoyed are Lisa Scottoline’s Keep Quiet for the category “Book that I always had but never read”, Jean E. Karl’s The Turning Place, Srinath Krishnamoorthy’s Hope We Never Meet Again and the classic Moby Dick by Herman Melville. I don’t have specific categories for the last three so I will add them to my extra list and try to read others that fit into the remaining categories from the reading challenge!
What about you? Are you participating in any of the reading challenges this year? Do you have a goal for the number of books to read in 2016? Let me know in the comments.