I haven’t done a tag for so long but they’re some of my favourite posts to write, so today I’m sharing the Mid Year Book Freak Out Tag! Check out the original tag here.
I’ve tried my best not to write about the same handful of books, but it’s hard because some of them definitely overlap. For example: favourite book and favourite characters. Most of the time a book is a favourite because I love the characters.
If you’re interested in last year’s freak out tag (which is certainly more succinct than this one) then you can check that out here. Otherwise, let’s get stuck in!
1. The Best Book of 2020 So Far
I’ve read a lot of amazing books this year, so I have a few contenders for this one. I’ve decided to bullet point a couple of things to save this post being suuuuper long.
The first is House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas.
- Such an emotional rollercoaster!
- Lots of world building yes, but it was much more mature and complex than SJM’s previous work
- It was funny, hot, action packed, heartbreaking and just EVERYTHING
- SJM loves to flip things on their head so I honestly have no idea where this story is going to go
Next I chose The Dare by Elle Kennedy
- The fourth book in the Briar U series which is a new adult college sports romance
- Plus size main character
- Commentary on body positivity and acceptance
- Fake dating trope and it was super hot too!
Since filming the original video a couple of weeks ago, I finished Take a Hint, Dani Brown by Talia Hibbert and I just had to include it.
- Another fake dating trope
- Black bisexual female main character and a grumpy Muslim male main character
- Anxiety rep
- Hilarious but soft and cute and again, very very hot 🥵
I just finished 40-Love by Olivia Dade and it’s absolutely a favourite.
- Adult holiday romance story
- Fat female character who is an Assistant Principal and a hot Swedish tennis coach love interest with a sports injury
- Amazing rep, steamy smut, laugh out loud moments and a lot of love and compassion
2. Best sequel you’ve read so far in 2020
Earlier this year I read More Than We Can Tell by Brigid Kemmerer, which is the second book in the young adult contemporary series Letters to the Lost. You can read either book as a standalone though if you wanted to!
We follow Rev, who had an abusive father and now lives with his adopted family, and Chloe who loves coding and has built her own computer game. Both characters have their worlds turned upside down: Rev receives a letter from his abusive father and Chloe is harassed and trolled online. Both characters come together in the wake of these events and form a powerful friendship. Content warnings for abuse and harassment!
3. New Release you Haven’t Read Yet but Want to
Everyone seems to love You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson and I’m so excited to read it. It’s actually on my July TBR! I don’t know tonnes about the plot as I want to be surprised, but from what I can gather it’s about a Sapphic romance about Liz, a black girl in high school who relies on financial aid to go to college and without it she’s stuck. After realising that you can win a scholarship if you become Prom Queen, Liz enters and I’m pretty sure she falls for another of the entrants!
4. Most Anticipated Release for the Rest of the Year
I have a few options of this one!
First up, The Invisible Life of Addie Larue by V. E. Schwab. Need I say more?
Next is Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas. This is about a Latinx trans boy called Yadriel who accidentally summons the ghost of the school’s resident bad boy who is determined to tie up some loose ends before he leaves. BUT do they really want to seperate?
Next is Loveless by Alice Oseman! Again I don’t really know the plot exactly but I believe it has aro and ace rep and I am so excited. I’m planning to read this in August for Imi and Ellie’s A-spec August reading challenge.
I’m excited for so many books over the next few months, but the final one I’m going to talk about here is How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories by Holly Black. Yesss we’re getting a book about our boy Cardan! With scenes from the original trilogy from his perspective and a look into his past too, god I am ready for this.
5. Biggest Disappointment of the Year so Far
This is easy for me. It’s Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff. I really wanted to love this after reading Aurora Rising and Burning, but it just didn’t do it for me. It just didn’t live up the hype for me after being so excited for it. I ended up rating it 2.5/5 stars and would probably have DNF if I hadn’t been reading it for the Make Your Myth Taker readathon.
6. Biggest surprise of the Year So Far
So this has to be Get a Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert. This is an adult romance, where our main character Chloe, a fat black woman who has fibromyalgia wants to learn to “get a life” after an almost near death experience. Enter Red, the tattooed handyman of her apartment block. Now I knew from the synopsis that I was going to enjoy this, but I wasn’t prepared for how much I was going to love it. This book just blew me away! It was diverse, cute and fluffy but also really steamy and had really important messages throughout. Content warnings for domestic emotional abuse.
7. Favourite New Author
Easy, Talia Hibbert and Olivia Dade!
8. Newest Fictional Crush
So erm, I have a few? Red and Zaf from The Brown Sisters’ books, Conor from The Dare and more recently Lucas from 40-Love.
9. Newest Favourite Character
So nearly all of the characters from this book were my favourite, but in particular Bryce, Hunt and Ruhn from House of Earth and Blood. They were so well fleshed out and developed. They were clearly individual and standout characters but they worked so well together and I can’t wait to hear more from them in future books (I hope).
I also can’t stop thinking about Tess and Lucas from 40-Love, which is probably quite clear.
10. Book That Made You Cry
The first book that made me cry this year was Clockwork Princess, the final book in The Infernal Devices series by Cassandra Clare. I can’t say why because of spoilers, but THAT ENDING. If you know, you know.
Also, House of Earth and Blood. That book tore me apart and put me together again so many times I just couldn’t cope.
11. Book That Made You Happy
Again, putting aside the adult romances I’ve gushed about enough, I’m going with The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang. This romance with autism and Aspergers rep with a Vietnamese American character was smutty but soft. Another fake dating trope (sensing a theme yet?) and some really lovely family content.
Next I chose The Dare by Elle Kennedy. It made me laugh so much, and I did that really annoying thing where you squeal and kick your legs and like throw your arms about in excitement.
12. Most Beautiful Book Bought or Received
I love the exclusive edition of Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare that I picked up from Waterstones. Also my lovely friend Beth gifted me The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern and while some people aren’t a fan of this cover, I personally really like it!
13. What Books Do You Need to Read by the End of the Year
So firstly I have to say Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir because all my friends keep screaming at me about this. Beth is also hosting a readalong in August so I definitely have no excuse.
I also wanted to catch up with V. E. Schwab’s books too. I’ve read some of them but haven’t actually finished any of her series (and some I haven’t even started) so this needs to change. My pal Kate has recently announced a readathon which is perfect timing too!
Okay, there we have the Mid Year Freak Out Tag! I could honestly add so many more books to this list but then we would be here forever so I definitely had to have some restraint…
If you’re reading this, then I tag you to participate in this tag too! And make sure to link me to them because I would love to read it.
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