Top 14 Books of 2014

5:01 PM

It's the end of the year so I'm going to talk about my top 14 favorite books that I've read this year. I've read a lot this year and I picked my most 14 favorite of them that I definitely recommend and you should definitely read them. This list will go from 14 to 1, starting with my least favorite of the 14 and finishing up with my favorite book of the year. I'll admit it's pretty hard to ordering them because I'm not even sure which one I like better. I may or may not love them all equally. But let's find out!

14. The DUFF by Kody Keplinger
Seventeen-year-old Bianca Piper is cynical and loyal, and she doesn’t think she’s the prettiest of her friends by a long shot. She’s also way too smart to fall for the charms of man-slut and slimy school hottie Wesley Rush. In fact, Bianca hates him. And when he nicknames her “the Duff,” she throws her Coke in his face. But things aren’t so great at home right now, and Bianca is desperate for a distraction. She ends up kissing Wesley. Worse, she likes it. Eager for escape, Bianca throws herself into a closeted enemies-with-benefits relationship with him. Until it all goes horribly awry. It turns out Wesley isn’t such a bad listener, and his life is pretty screwed up, too. Suddenly Bianca realizes with absolute horror that she’s falling for the guy she thought she hated more than anyone.

I usually never liked a contemporary this much but i like this book so much! Loved it, even. I found Bianca really honest. There are so many things we all can relate to her. I love how the development of Bianca and Wesley's relationship didn't rush. This book is not cheesy. I think what i really love about this book is how honest it is. We can also learn that not all attractive-skinny-girls-who-like-to-party are always a b*tch. Yes i'm talking about Casey and Jessica. It honestly surprised me when i first found that they are actually really care for Bianca. If you've read too much fantasy and tired of too much bullshit in your life i highly recommend you this book!

13. Don't Look Back by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Samantha is a stranger in her own life. Until the night she disappeared with her best friend, Cassie, everyone said Sam had it all-popularity, wealth, and a dream boyfriend. Sam has resurfaced, but she has no recollection of who she was or what happened to her that night. As she tries to piece together her life from before, she realizes it's one she no longer wants any part of. The old Sam took "mean girl" to a whole new level, and it's clear she and Cassie were more like best enemies. Sam is pretty sure that losing her memories is like winning the lottery. She's getting a second chance at being a better daughter, sister, and friend, and she's falling hard for Carson Ortiz, a boy who has always looked out for her-even if the old Sam treated him like trash. But Cassie is still missing, and the facts about what happened to her that night isn't just buried deep inside of Sam's memory-someone else knows, someone who wants to make sure Sam stays quiet. All Sam wants is the truth, and if she can unlock her clouded memories of that fateful night, she can finally move on. But what if not remembering is the only thing keeping Sam alive?

The moment I started this book I was immediately sucked in to the story. I couldn't put it down! It's a quick read, fast-paced, addicting, amazing, and unpredictable! I really didn't see that one coming. I grew liking Sam very much. I mean, the New Sam (because who the hell like the Old Mean Sam?). I liked the idea of her getting a second chance to make amends and to become a better person. Because turned out she wasn't really a bad person but the demand of being perfect made her the way she was. Losing memories was a fortune to her because that way she got to change back to her very first version of self. And I really really love Scott (besides Carson because hell, everyone must loves him) because how loving and protective he was toward Sam. I just love him very much. I like story with strong siblings bond. Just like the one in Mara Dyer. 

12. The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey
After the 1st wave, only darkness remains. After the 2nd, only the lucky escape. And after the 3rd, only the unlucky survive. After the 4th wave, only one rule applies: trust no one. Now, it’s the dawn of the 5th wave, and on a lonely stretch of highway, Cassie runs from Them. The beings who only look human, who roam the countryside killing anyone they see. Who have scattered Earth’s last survivors. To stay alone is to stay alive, Cassie believes, until she meets Evan Walker. Beguiling and mysterious, Evan Walker may be Cassie’s only hope for rescuing her brother—or even saving herself. But Cassie must choose: between trust and despair, between defiance and surrender, between life and death. To give up or to get up.

I laughed more than i should have. But seriously, this book has a lot of humors than what you may expected. It's mostly sarcasm though. Cassie is really sarcastic and funny. She makes me laugh a hell lot. And the coincidence is really cool. I was told by one of my friends that this book is so confusing because there are so many POVs and she couldn't keep up but i don't know why i guessed whose POV it is pretty easy. Maybe because i've anticipated there will be many POVs or because i've read many books with different POVs and know immediately "no this can't the main character's perspective, she didn't think like this" or maybe because its confusing and i like when books confused me when i can figure it out in the end? I don't know. But i really enjoy this book. It's alien book by the way. 

11. Cruel Summer by James Dawson
A year after Janey’s suicide, her friends reunite at a remote Spanish villa, desperate to put the past behind them. However, an unwelcome guest arrives claiming to have evidence that Jane was murdered. When she is found floating in the pool, it becomes clear one of them is a killer. Only one thing is for certain, surviving this holiday is going to be murder

It's a psychological thriller book. Just like Ten. And just like many more books you'll find in this post. This book is addictive because I can't make myself stop once I read it. I flew right along pages after pages, chapters after chapters. I really like how the title is so well-fitted to the story. Those two words told us what happened in this book. And it's far more complicated than just Janey's death. It's a lot more than that.

10. Ten by Gretchen McNeil
Don't spread the word!
Three-day weekend. Party at White Rock House on Henry Island.
You do NOT want to miss it.
It was supposed to be the weekend of their lives—an exclusive house party on Henry Island. Best friends Meg and Minnie each have their reasons for being there (which involve T.J., the school’s most eligible bachelor) and look forward to three glorious days of boys, booze and fun-filled luxury. But what they expect is definitely not what they get, and what starts out as fun turns dark and twisted after the discovery of a DVD with a sinister message: Vengeance is mine. Suddenly people are dying, and with a storm raging, the teens are cut off from the outside world. No electricity, no phones, no internet, and a ferry that isn’t scheduled to return for two days. As the deaths become more violent and the teens turn on each other, can Meg find the killer before more people die? Or is the killer closer to her than she could ever imagine?

This is a retelling of that classic mystery And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie that might've been a more agreeable surprise and modern with its many twists and turns. This book is almost perfect. Almost. I really like the whole thing but I also found some cliche. I hate it when the killer decided to talk to the last-supposed-to-be-victim. And you could guess how it will end. But I really love how this book goes. It's fast-paced, action packed and page turner. Frankly, I read Ten first then I found out it's actually a retelling, then I read the original book. It's also in this Top 14 post! (Btw I just realized this book titled Ten is at number 10 lol)

9. Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee. Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling. Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha . . . and the secrets of her heart.

The themes of Shadow and Bone center around power, and the struggle for it. Also, there's love and romance stuff for those who care for such things - and who have a functioning heart. Grisha is divided into different groups based on their power, they all do different magic. This first book was a great introduction to the Grisha world. There where a lot of twists and turns, lots of action. I am also enjoying the sequel, plenty of new surprises and I have a feeling there is so much more that is going to happen.  I like Alina the main character. She goes from this helpless and weak girl into a self-assured and strong girl by the end of the book. It was such a fast change. Usually it needs 3 books to see a character grows like this. The Darkling gives me Warner feels (Shatter Me reference). He's sexy and dangerous. And is it bad that i actually ship him with Alina? But there's also Mal. The safer and more sensible option. Bad boy or good guy?

8. The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
Mara Dyer believes life can't get any stranger than waking up in a hospital with no memory of how she got there. It can. She believes there must be more to the accident she can't remember that killed her friends and left her strangely unharmed. There is. She doesn't believe that after everything she's been through, she can fall in love. She's wrong.

Sometimes, you can judge a book by its cover. This book is scary, crazy, thrilling, amazing. It made me so stressed that I wanna bang my head on the wall. It drawn me in right from the beginning. I couldn't put it down. Because when a chapter ends, the next chapter is so tempting it made you want to keep reading so you couldn't stop. And WOW THE ENDING. I just had the worst cliffhanger ever. I'm too shocked right now. TOO SHOCKED THAT I NEED THE SEQUEL RIGHT NOW. Yes, I haven't read the sequel! What is life. I love the characters- Mara because she is strong which makes her not a weak character because I really hate weak character. And Daniel, he does really amazing as a brother. And of course, as you all can guess, NOAH SHAW. Sexy, funny and mysterious.

7. Legend by Marie Lu
What was once the western United States is now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic's wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy being groomed for success in the Republic's highest military circles. Born into the slums, fifteen-year-old Day is the country's most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem. From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths - until the day June's brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family's survival, while June seeks to avenge Metias's death. But in a shocking turn of events, the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths their country will go to keep its secrets.  

The story in this book is so unique, different and new. I don't think I have ever read anything like this before. It's like entering a whole new world. I mean, that's the thing about dystopian books. A whole new world invented. But it's just... REALLY GOOD. That I think I need to say that again. I think what I really like about it is how the main characters (aka the lover of the book) met. I just couldn't help loving it so much.

6. Dark Places by Gillian Flynn
Libby Day was just seven years old when her evidence put her fifteen-year-old brother behind bars. Since then, she had been drifting. But when she is contacted by a group who are convinced of Ben's innocence, Libby starts to ask questions she never dared to before. Was the voice she heard her brother's? Ben was a misfit in their small town, but was he capable of murder? Are there secrets to uncover at the family farm or is Libby deluding herself because she wants her brother back? She begins to realise that everyone in her family had something to hide that day... especially Ben. Now, twenty-four years later, the truth is going to be even harder to find. Who did massacre the Day family?

Reading this book was like doing a puzzle. Piece by piece, the unimaginable truth emerges. It takes so much patience. That's the thing about this book that I love. Looks like the author had prepared for this book really well. And I feel really sorry for the Days. You won't expected you'll be sad or sorry by a book like this, or even for the characters, but that's what that happened to me. 

5. And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
Ten strangers, each with a dark secret, are lured to a mansion on an uninhabited island and killed off one by one.

I'm quite ashamed to say that this is the first book by Agatha Christie that i've ever read. I've heard how awesome her books are long time ago but there are always some books getting in the way when i want to read her books! So im pleased now that i can finally read her book. I've been eyeing this book for a very long time now. I've heard it's one of Christie's masterpiece. But when i finished reading Ten by Gretchen McNeil and browse through Goodreads' users reviews, i saw that turns out Ten was loosely based on And Then There Were None. I loved Ten and I immediately looked for this book and read it in less than a day. It's one of the best murder mystery books i've ever read. On top of everything! It's not cliche and so extraordinary. Ten which seems amazing when i finished it now looks ordinary to me that i'm done with this book! I couldn't even make out who may be the killer. I didn't have suspects. I didn't even know what to think! 

4. Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn
Words are like a road map to reporter Camille Preaker’s troubled past. Fresh from a brief stay at a psych hospital, Camille’s first assignment from the second-rate daily paper where she works brings her reluctantly back to her hometown to cover the murders of two preteen girls. Since she left town eight years ago, Camille has hardly spoken to her neurotic, hypochondriac mother or to the half-sister she barely knows: a beautiful thirteen-year-old with an eerie grip on the town. Now, installed again in her family’s Victorian mansion, Camille is haunted by the childhood tragedy she has spent her whole life trying to cut from her memory. As Camille works to uncover the truth about these violent crimes, she finds herself identifying with the young victims—a bit too strongly. Clues keep leading to dead ends, forcing Camille to unravel the psychological puzzle of her own past to get at the story. Dogged by her own demons, Camille will have to confront what happened to her years before if she wants to survive this homecoming.

I've read all Flynn's books, I love all of them but this one is my number 1 favorite. This book is sick, dark, twisted, thrilling, unhealthy. I noticed that her books' protagonists are always messed up adults with messed up pasts (and present). But don't judge a book by its characters. Have you ever noticed that in our society people always suspect men immediately for all terrible, hideous, sick crime? But have you ever thought, what if it's a woman? But "Why would a woman do that?" and why would a man do that? I don't think children below the age 16 should read it because it fills with so many adult stuffs. But damn, her books always blown me away.

3. Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge
Since birth, Nyx has been betrothed to the evil ruler of her kingdom-all because of a foolish bargain struck by her father. And since birth, she has been in training to kill him. On her seventeenth birthday, Nyx abandons everything she's ever known to marry the all-powerful, immortal Ignifex. Her plan? Seduce him, destroy his enchanted castle, and break the nine-hundred-year-old curse he put on her people. But Ignifex is not at all what Nyx expected. The strangely charming lord beguiles her, and his castle-a shifting maze of magical rooms-enthralls her. As Nyx searches for a way to free her homeland by uncovering Ignifex's secrets, she finds herself unwillingly drawn to him. Even if she could bring herself to love her sworn enemy, how can she refuse her duty to kill him? With time running out, Nyx must decide what is more important: the future of her kingdom, or the man she was never supposed to love.

Beauty and the Beast meets Greek myth. This book is unbelievable good. Reading it was like walking in the endless labyrinth, it's so confusing at first. But don't worry, you'll understand all of it in the end. And it has a lot of plot twists which giving this book more points. Here I tell you something, don't guess anything, just keep reading! If you think you can guess what will happen next, you just can't. Things happened oppositely from what I guessed and so I tell you. Stop guessing and keep reading. It also bring me to tears at the end! But is it happy or sad tears? You tell me!

2. We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
I'm not putting the summary of this book because it's better not knowing anything at all to read it. The genre of this book should be Psychological Thriller. Because it's shocked the hell out of me in the end. But it really broke my heart. Please go read this book and find out why!

First, I want you to know that it's better to start off this book without knowing anything.
Second, if anyone asks you how it ends, just LIE.
Third, I really love the writing in this book. It's suspenseful, beautiful, mysterious, haunting and straightforward. It also fills with a lot of metaphors. I just love this book very much.
Fourth and last, this book will blow your mind.

1. The Diviners by Libba Bray
AND this is my number one favorite book of the year! Set in 1926, Evie O’Neill has been exiled from her boring old hometown and shipped off to the bustling streets of New York City. The only catch is that she has to live with her uncle Will and his unhealthy obsession with the occult. Evie worries he’ll discover her darkest secret: a supernatural power that has only brought her trouble so far. But when the police find a murdered girl branded with a cryptic symbol and Will is called to the scene, Evie realizes her gift could help catch a serial killer. As Evie jumps headlong into a dance with a murderer, other stories unfold in the city that never sleeps. A young man named Memphis is caught between two worlds. A chorus girl named Theta is running from her past. A student named Jericho hides a shocking secret. And unknown to all, something dark and evil has awakened.

The Diviners was pos-i-tute-ly swell! It may be a dark and terrifying read but it's also hilarious. I've lost count of how many times I laughed because of Evie and Sam's sassiness. It's also written beautifully with sharp dialogue that smacked of 1920s lingo. Honestly I don't see this as heavy read at all. I wish it were longer. Don't be discouraged by the number of pages because it goes by swiftly. I think Libba Bray has done a perfect job with this book. But I'm still mad because they keep pushing back the release date of the sequel, Lair of Dreams.

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