January 5, 2016

Fresh from the Bookshelf: My 8 Must Reads for 2016

I am a bookaholic and a fast reader. Put that together with also being a book blogger and getting a constant stream of books flowing into my hands makes my book basket rather...deep! At any given week, I might have a book basket with at least 10 new books in it. And let's not forget my Kindle! Tack on at least another five on my device! So at any given time, there might be 15 books waiting to be read in my house! Eeep! That's a bit overwhelming! Thankfully, I usually don't have a "deadline", although I try to read all my books for reviews within 4 weeks or less if possible. But I always have books moving in and out of my hands--with everything I've gotten my hands on...are there any books that I think should be must reads for 2016?
My 8 Must Read Books for 2016

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There are a few books that are due to come out this year (that I know of) that are absolutely on my MUST READ list for 2016. A few of these are part of series, but others are just books by some of my most favorite authors. I am also adding some that I want to read this year that aren't necessarily new releases. As you look at my list, I think you will easily see what genres are my favorites! LOL!

*Mermaid Moon by Colleen Coble

Mermaid Moon (to be released 1/12/2016) is the second book of the Sunset Cove series by best selling author Collen Coble. This series is a mystery/suspense romance in the contemporary Christian genre. In general, I am not a big fan of contemporary settings, but I love Colleen Coble as an author and her books are predominately modern day settings. She writes some seriously fabulous mystery and suspense books and I really enjoyed The Inn at Ocean's Edge which is book one in this series.

If you like Christian fiction, and are willing to explore the mystery/suspense side of the genre, make sure you give Colleen Coble books a try. They are very well written, and you won't be able to put them down. A couple other series by this author you might enjoy would be the Hope Beach series and the Lonestar Series. Check with your local library, because I am pretty sure they will have books by Colleen Coble.

*The Trials of Apollo: Book One~The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan

What? You didn't know there was a new Rick Riordan series coming out? I KNOW!!!! I just found out about The Trials of Apollo this week and so OBVIOUSLY it's on my must-read list for 2016. This one is set to be released in May 2016. I am so going to be #1 on the library list for it. This book will keep us in touch with the demigods of Camp Halfblood as it follows Apollo (yes the Greek mythology god) who has been turned into a human teenage boy by Zeus (because he angered him again of course). He has to navigate this crazy world and turns to the one place he knows might be able to help him...Camp Halfblood. The author says this WILL be a 5 part series. Since I LOVE all the books by Rick Riordan, and have read all of them, I am definitely going to be watching closely for this book. As I have said before, I have really gotten into the young adult literature genre...and I think I have Rick Riordan to blame thank for that!

*Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: Book 2~ The Hammer of Thor by Rick Riordan

See??? Told you. I am eager to grab ahold of the second book in the Magnus Chase series. I loved making the acquaintance of Norse mythology (I love learning about ancient mythology!) and really enjoyed the book. Naturally, I'm eager to read the next one in the series...even if I have to wait until The Hammer of Thor comes out in OCTOBER 2016. (sob)

*The Painter's Daughter by Julie Klassen

Julie Klassen is a Christian author I found about a year ago. The first book I read caught me hook, line and sinker (It was my favorite genre--historical inspirational fiction) and I've been greedily reading all her books since. Her most recent book The Painter's Daughter was released in December 2015, and I'm fortunate to have it to review on my Kindle, so I don't have to wait to read it. Each of her books is independent, so you could wet your whistle on any in her list.

I have enjoyed every single one of her books, so you really can't go wrong with whatever one you choose. I read one of her most recent ones (Lady Maybe) recently, and it was so good, I wasn't even sure how it was going to end until the last chapter! I am sure that The Painter's Daughter will be the same! I pick this book for my list, because of the author.

*From This Moment by Elizabeth Camden

This is another new release that has a publishing date of June 2016 (sniff...so far away!). I have this on the list because this is one of my top 5 most favorite authors and I read ALL her books. This is one author that I strongly recommend to anyone who loves not only inspirational fiction, but loves a deep, involved plot with incredible historical settings. These are not frothy easy reads. I cannot blaze through this author's books like I can others, and I LOVE that about them. I am totally engaged in the stories, because there is so much detail and richness in her plot. Her characters are more real because they have baggage in their lives.

Many of the books also dive into some important time of history and let you be a "part" of it. One book took me into the world of opium dens of the 1800's, another to the Great Chicago Fire, a third took me into the life of a dyslexic young woman in a time when dyslexia was mental retardation, a fourth explored the lives of the first female librarians, and yet another into the world of the US Navy when it was first finding it's feet and proving it's worth. Every book leaves me completely satisfied and usually going after rabbit trails that caught my attention, relating to the background stories (like the ones I mentioned above) of the characters. I am so happy that I am currently reviewing her most recent release (as of December 2015) Until the Dawn and will be able to share that with you soon. She is one of the only authors that I have always given 5 stars to. You totally need to ask your library for one of her books if you love detailed historical fiction--and though it IS inspirational fiction, I have never found the religious aspect to be more than just really a character trait or small aspect of the book as a whole. If you want to TRY out an Elizabeth Camden book, you can grab one of her novellas Toward the Sunrise for free on Kindle.

*Knowing God by Name: A Girlfriends in God Faith Adventure

This book is in my book basket of Must Reads for 2016 because I am STILL working my way through this Bible Study book, even though it's been available since 2013. It is SOOOOO good and has led me deeper into my relationship with God as I learn more about many of His names in the Bible. If you follow me on Instagram, you have seen me share pieces of what I have read as part of my daily bible study...it's sooooooo good! I highly recommend this book to any woman who desires a "scheduled" study that allows you to have daily readings and weekly reflections.

This book has really made some of the names of God just come alive for me. I cannot recommend it enough. I journal my way through it, and it's become kind of like a prayer journal at the same time. It's going to be great having these to reference later when I am completed with this book. I am currently wrapping up Week 6...two more weeks to go!

*The Great Divide by Thomas Fleming

Okay. The Great Divide is my big non-fiction book that I REALLY REALLY REALLY want to get to this year. The thing about non-fiction books is that they require MORE of me. LOL. I can't read a sentence in a glance like I can with a lot of fiction, so I have to spend more time to work through it. That being said, I LOVE great biographies and this one really really appeals to me! I have it. I just haven't opened it yet.

My interest was first piqued in regards to learning more about how these two men worked together, when I reviewed an American History course last year that was centered around this time in American history. I knew then that I wanted to know MORE about how these two men worked together (or didn't!) and what history was made because of their decisions.

*The Crown by Kiera Cass

This is book #5 in The Selection series--a best selling series for Young Adult Literature. It's one I sort of stumbled on at a Barnes &Noble. I was intrigued and told my library about it. They quickly ordered the whole series (save for this book) and I enjoyed every one of the books. I thought the series had ended--yet here we are with a final book to be released in May 2016. I am definitely telling my library about it, and then I want to be the first one at it! :)

If you are wondering, this series is like Hunger Games (with the random selection lottery/"castes" and LIVE TV on your every move) meets The Bachelor, with a smidge of Miss America thrown in. Add in royal intrigue and revolutionaries...well it's HIGHLY entertaining!


There you go! There is a peak into my 8 Must Read books for 2016---oh sure, there are FAR more than just these 8, but they are some of the ones that I am looking forward to reading the most!  As the year continues I am going to have a LOT of book reviews for you--I currently have three on deck to write, and 9 other books to read for review! You can always see a pretty good list of the books I am reading, want to read, and have already read on my Goodreads profile (come friend me!). I even have a goal of reading 100 books in 2016! That's actually not a ridiculous goal for me---I read 115 books in 2013 and 80 books in 2013. And I'm reviewing even more than ever before, so I think I'll be able to hit my 100 books BEFORE the end of the year even! LOL!

Did you see any here that YOU would like to read?

Our Must Read Books for 2016 {Dad & Mum's Book Stand}
Click here for even MORE book lists!
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