After posting a poll on Instagram, this category won! I will be doing all three categories from the poll at some point, since I’ll be taking a little hiatus from my usual book reviews. Why? Well, I’m reading Les Miserables at the moment, which is like a gazillion pages in the tiniest font imaginable so it may be a bit before I manage to read anything else. Not to worry though! I definitely will still be active on The Bookshop Barista.
Let’s get started!
Choosing only a few books was quite difficult… there are sooooooo many good ones! That being said, here are the ones I feel are my “most” favorite fictional novels.
(*note* this list does not include classics, although my all time favorite book is a classic. We’ll get to that later.)
The Sweetest Thing: Elizabeth Musser
This sweet novel by Elizabeth Musser has a very special place in my heart. The book takes place in 1930’s Atlanta, where two beautiful girls, one quite wealthy and prim, the other poor and spunky, meet. Perri and Dobbs, although their friendship has a rocky start, quickly become the best of friends after a terrible tragedy. The story follows their friendship through all the tumult of high school during the Great Depression. Musser writes wonderfully. No matter how many times I read this book, the writing and characters never fail to pull at my heartstrings.
(I couldn’t find my copy of this because it’s currently at my best friend’s house, so here’s a picture of my Perri necklace. She has one that says Dobbs… Is that not the sweetest thing??? – pun intended.)
All the Light We Cannot See: Anthony Doer
What can I say about this book? It is honestly the most breathtaking but achingly beautiful book I have ever read. Anthony Doer tells the story of two teenagers caught in the chaos of World War II and their search to find light amidst the darkness. The book essentially is about finding hope in a despairing world. When reading this novel, I was reminded of the one true Light – Jesus.
Flipped: Wendelin van Draanen
This book, ah goodness, to say the least, I am quite emotionally attached to it. The story of Bryce and Julie is both touching, relatable, and endearing. Flipped by Wendelin van Draanen tells the story of two young teenagers who discover much about themselves and life. Julie falls head over heels in love with Bryce in the second grade, and Bryce decides that Julie is the most annoying human being on the planet. The two retain these feelings for each other for years, never speaking to one another. This all flips (see what I did there *wink* *wink*) in eighth grade when Julie realizes Bryce is a jerk, and Bryce realizes that Julie might very well be one of the most amazing people to ever walk the planet.
The Light Between Oceans: M L Stedman
This is truly one of the most heart-wrenching novels I have ever read. As my dad would say, it rips out your heart, stops on it, then puts in back in your chest. All that to say, it’s an amazing book about love, the power of desire, and the consequences our actions have on those around this. All this is told through the story of an Australian couple, Isabel and Tom, who live in an isolated lighthouse. When they discover a shipwrecked baby, Isabel, grief-stricken by a series of miscarriages, convinces Tom to keep the child. When the couple moves back to the mainland and meets the child’s mother, a chain of events is set in place that will forever change the lives of those it affects. (The one downfall of this book is the profanity and the numerous uses of God’s holy name as a cuss word. However, I think the message heavily outways these sins.)
The One True Love of Alice Ann: Eva Everson
This novel is charming. Essentially it tells the simple story of a girl who grows to a woman on the American homefront. As she matures, she begins to question her ideas of true love and discovers it might be much more precious than she had originally believed. Albeit uncomplicated, this book is lovely in its own way. I think that readers will be able to place themselves in Alice’s shoes quite easily. I know I could.
The Chronicles of Narnia: C S Lewis
Narnia! These books never cease to amaze me with their profound yet childlike wisdom and wonder. If you don’t read anything else on this list, please please please read these.
Christy: Catherine Marshall
Christy sets the standard for Christian fiction. Unlike a number of Christian novels, this book is not sappy or shallow. The story of Christy is raw but inspiring and beautiful. As a young woman she travels to the Appalachian Mountains to become a school teacher in a remote (extremely remote, like no roads or telephones remote) village. She learns about herself, the unique mountain people, love, and God in the awe-inspiring Appalachians.
The Lost Crown: Sarah Miller
How can I talk about this book without tearing up? I knew the end when I began it, which just makes this book all the more heartbreaking. The Lost Crown tells the story of the four ill-fated Romanov sisters, Olga, Tatiana, Maria, and Anastasia, or OTMA, as they called themselves. What I love most about this book, is the love between these girls, each with their own delightful personality.
The Penderwicks: Jeanne Birdsall
As in The Lost Crown, The Penderwicks is about the warm love between four very unique sisters. The Penderwicks are modern-day March sisters, they grow up without one parent, have secret meetings, and meet a mysterious boy next door. These lovable books, while children’s literature, are splendid.
Waves of Mercy: Lynn Austen
This lovely book is a story of self-discovery and the sweet mercy offered at the hands of the Savior. It alternates between the story of a Dutch grandmother’s immigration as a young girl to America, and a young woman’s revelation of grace and identity. Waves of Mercy is one of Lynn Austen’s finest works.
There you have it! What are your favorite books? Comment below!
(All pictures are mine except The Light Between Oceans one, that one is from Pinterest.)