Another year, another year end list. Today's post is all about my favourite reads of 2016. If you'll notice, I'm putting reads instead of books, which is basically me saying that not all of these books were released this year, but I did read them, so it kind of counts for 2016. Don't say it doesn't, cause it was all new for me so deal with it. ANYWAY, here are five great reads I experienced this year.
1. The Girls by Emma Cline
I first heard about this book in the June issue of Marie Claire. The little snippet it previewed of the novel had me incredibly intrigued. I was so excited to read this book that I pre-ordered it which almost never happens with a book. The story is about a girl named Evie who gets sucked into a cult that parallels that of the Manson Family. The story goes back and forth from the 1960s to present day as the reader gets a first person encounter on what Evie experienced with this cult.
2. The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo by Amy Schumer
I've loved Amy Schumer for a few years now, and was so excited to hear that she was writing a book. Her comical style and making-fun-of-yourself attitude shines so brightly in her stories. Although a funny girl, she does have a dark history that she bravely shares in several chapters of her book, having me gain even more respect for her.
3. Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur
I had seen various posts on Facebook and Instagram of Kaur's haunting poetry from her critically acclaimed collection Milk and Honey. After I went through a painful breakup, I turned to her book for healing. The poetry selection is broken up into four sections; the hurting, the loving, the breaking, and the healing. The more I flipped through, the more I felt her words tug at my heartstrings. Whenever I need a little bit of extra love, I turn to this book now. Definitely one of my favourite reads and one of my top recommendations.
4. The Opposite of Loneliness by Marina Keegan
I stumbled upon The Opposite of Loneliness in a Chapters before last Christmas. Interested, though having not read too too much about it, I still put it on my wish list. When I finally got around to picking it up, I didn't know what to expect. The book is an incredible mix of fiction and non-fiction work by writer Marina Keegan who tragically died in a car accident a few days after her university graduation in 2012. All of her work was pulled together posthumously into this book by her parents. This collection of essays and stories are so inviting that you feel like you want full stories from some of the fiction, and even more to take in with her non-fiction. Once I finished the book I wished so bad there was a way I could contact her to tell her thank you for her work. Certainly someone gone too soon.
5. Sounds Like Me by Sara Bareilles
I was thrilled at the end of summer 2015 when I heard that Sara Bareilles was releasing an autobiography. I asked for it for Christmas and was even more thrilled to see it under the tree that year. Sara is one of my favourite singers and reading about her progression from theatre nerd to Grammy nominated performer and Broadway lyricist was incredibly inspiring. In the book she talks about different personal struggles like self-image and trying to gain label attention, to the process of songwriting. She's a compelling writer that makes you want to dive right in with whatever story she's sharing.
Bonus: Tranny by Laura Jane Grace
Okay, so I haven't exactly finished this book yet, but I bought it maybe a week and a half ago and i'm already halfway through. I've loved Laura Jane since I saw Against Me! open for Billy Talent almost seven years ago. I thought their music was engaging and compelling and have been a fan ever since. After Laura publicly came out in 2012, and after watching her AOL series, I was fascinated by her story and what she had gone through both pre and post outing. Tranny gives the nitty gritty of Laura's life and the constant internal struggle she has dealt with her whole life. Although dark, the love and support from the fans are clearly always showing. I can't wait to finish this book.