Skip to main content

My five star reads of 2018

I've managed to read a fair few books this year. At the time of writing this I am part way through book 175. Looking back over the books I've read this year is really interesting for me as a reader. I've read more broadly in one sense in that I no longer read just YA books and have read a real mix of books from picture books to adult books. I've also found myself reading and loving a bit of non fiction which isn't something I've done in years and years. However in lots of ways I feel like my reading habits have become narrower. I tend to only read what I like with a focus on contemporary and historical fiction or non fiction focused on history books on parts of history I get really geeky over. I am also a serial DNFer. If I'm not enjoying a book even after the first page I tend to ditch it. This does mean that out of the 174 books I've finished so far only seven haven't been rated three star or above as I do tend to really enjoy what I read.

Out of the 174 books I've read I've picked out 21 as five star reads of the year as follows.

YA books

Truly Wildly Deeply by Jenny McLachlan

I loved this book because the main characters were ace. I loved meeting Fab and Annie and loved their story from the first page.

Big Bones by Laura Dockrill

I loved big bones because of the message it had to say about body positivity and being true to yourself. It made me laugh a lot. If you do read this be prepared to read with snacks because every page will make you hungry.

Rosie Loves Jack by Mel Darbon

I raced through this book unable to put it down. It is such a cracking YA read with brilliant characters, a tense storyline and brilliant representation of diverse characters.

Second Best Friend by Non Pratt

I love Non's books and this was so perfectly relatable focusing on toxicity of the pressure put on teen girls particularly in comparison to others in their own friendship circle. I loved every page.

My Heart goes bang by Keris Stainton

I love Keris's books and this was no exception. It was a brilliant YA read focused around a group of girls house sharing at University. I loved every page of their story and would love more.

Songs about a boy by Chris Russell


I'm a sucker for a boy band book and this series has been perfect. I loved every page and loved being back in the world of fire and lights one more time.

I was born for this by Alice Oseman

Another brilliant YA boyband book and another book with brilliant representation of diverse characters but with Alice Oseman's perfect style. I love her work and she just keeps getting better. I can't wait to see what she does next.

Paper Avalanche by Lisa Williamson

This the next book from yet another author I love. I have been eagerly awaiting this 2019 release for ages and was lucky enough that an early dropped through my door recently. I loved it completely absolutely falling for the main character Ro. I can't wait for you all to read it.

Women's fiction

Crazy in Love at the Lonely Hearts bookshop and A Winter kiss on Rochester Mews by Annie Darling

This year's treat was not just one but two books from Annie Darling both of which were wonderful. When I first heard about this series I was excited, romantic novels set in a bookshop, and they have consistently delivered book after book. I don't want the story to end and am desperately waiting for Annie to write something else.

Still me by Jojo Moyes

I loved being back with Louisa and following her story since book one and two. She is such a wonderful character and her stateside adventures were brilliant.

Endless Beach and An Island Christmas by Jenny Colgan

Another treat for me with Jenny Colgan releasing two books this year both set on the Island of Mure. I loved being back on Mure and being back with the characters was really lovely.

Heidi Swain's Christmas Novels.

I discovered Heidi as an author this year and have since read through her backlist. They are definitely my kind of book being lovely and sweet and set in and around where I live (which I get ridiculously geeky about). I deliberately save her up Christmas novels for December this year because I thought it would be festive but because December often ends up being a bit of a naff reading month for me and I wanted to end the reading year on a high rather than a damp squib. They did not disappoint as I loved them completely. I can't wait for Heidi's next novel in 2019.

The Invitation by Keris Stainton

As I said above I love Keris's books and was very excited to get my hands on this. The story was lovely and it was very funny. Perfect for me.

Children's Non-Fiction

Suffragette the Battle of Equality by David Roberts

There's been a lot of books released this year about the suffragette movement and while I've enjoyed pretty much all of them this was definitely my favourite of the releases put out for children. It's really informative and oh so beautiful with the wonderful illustrations along side the words. I loved it.

Adult Non Fiction

Hearts and Minds by Jane Robinson

This is a huge chunk of a book and yet such a easy and quick read. I found myself so completely immersed in the stories of the women of the Suffragist movement that it has actually changed by mindset towards the importance of the suffragist movement and made me so much more interested in the women who were part of it and their courage needed to be involved in their campaign for the vote.

Bad Girls by Caitlin Davies

I loved this book far more than I thought I would. It focuses on the stories of the women serving time over the the life of Holloway Prison. It is such a fascinating read looking at the stories of the different women who ended up in their particularly when you look at the injustices a lot of them faced for just being female which directly led to them serving time. I picked it up initially because I was on a suffragette obsessed mission but every chapter had me hooked.

Graphic Novel

Heartstopper by Alice Oseman

I got this through Alice's kickstarter and am so very glad I did. It is such a wonderful read which I adored from the first page and is probably my favourite book of 2018. I loved the story and the developing relationship that blossoms between Nick and Charlie. I honestly have no idea how I'm going to manage waiting for Volume Two