By: Khadija Coats
The Fellowship of the Ring
By J.R.R Tolkien
I loved everything about this book, especially the worldbuilding. It was so detailed and rich. The backstories about each place were really what drew me into the book, it was very immersive and beautiful. I also loved the characters and their development throughout the book and their backstories. Not sure I like Frodo (book Frodo) as much as I enjoyed Bilbo (from The Hobbit), but I think I just need a little more time to warm up to him. I regret not starting this sooner because I loved the movies and the descriptions of Middle-Earth, both in the films and books. I can’t wait to start The Two Towers! If you plan on reading the LOTR series, I recommend watching The Rings of Power on Prime Video first the worldbuilding in The Lord of the Rings series is a bit complex and the show gives you good context on the world and characters. It also introduces you to the LOTR universe.
Ace of Spades
By Faridah Àbíké-íyímídé
Mystery & Thriller (check trigger warning before reading)
One word: Incredible. I cannot even begin to describe the many emotions I felt reading this book. Àbíké-íyímídé did an amazing job writing this. Not only was the writing amazing, but the whole book in its entirety was chilling and incredible. I had a huge headache by the end of it. The fact that this was her debut novel is what really blows my mind.
By Marissa Meyer
Retelling & Fantasy
Live, Laugh, and Love this book. Catherine Pinkerton is the very definition of a misunderstood villain (you heard me). This was so good, the characters might’ve been my favorite part of reading. Jest and Catherine were written so perfectly. The ending really tore me apart, seriously it left me a mess. As for the writing, it was so beautiful. The imagery was chef’s kiss, it was vivid and interesting. I cannot recommend this enough, it’s a great book for the winter months. In other words, you should read it right now. #CathandJestdeservebetter
Babel: An Arcane History
By R.F Kuang
Well written and everything. Kuang did not leave a single subject out in this book. The book touches on Colonialism, Imperialism, Identity, Dark Academia, the history of translation, and more, with the incorporation of fantasy. The book was a bit slow paced and the fantasy aspects weren’t really developed throughout the book, but what really pulled me into the book were the characters, their backstories, and Kuang’s writing.
By Tracy Deonn
Perfection (we’re going to pretend the love triangle didn’t exist, we all know Selwyn is Bree’s one and only love interest). A perfect concoction of engaging writing, important topics, and well-developed characters. This was by far my favorite Arthurian-inspired book and was my favorite read of 2022.
As Long as the Lemon Tree Grows
By Zoulfa Katouh
This! This book right here is a masterpiece. In fact, Katouh broke my heart as an example, just to fit this book back in its place. It’s impossible to not cry reading this. This is such an important book with beautiful writing, heartbreaking stories, and romance. It’s a story of heartbreak, resilience, fear, and grief during the Syrian Revolution. An absolute must-read.
Our Violent Ends
By Chloe Gong
Retelling & Fantasy
Miss Chloe Gong never disappoints. This book was so engaging and interesting. The ending was perfect, she tied everything up so perfectly. I seriously couldn’t imagine a better ending. Actually, I can, but I don’t want to spoil anything so I’ll leave it at that.
Foul Lady Fortune
By Chloe Gong
Another great Shakespeare-inspired book written by Miss Chloe Gong. A spy and assassin in a fake marriage. If that wasn’t enough to make me list this as my best read of 2022 I don’t know what was. This was such an amazing book! The writing was so compelling and immersive. The characters were so developed and unique. It was fantastic.
By Marie Lu (my fav author)
I can never get enough of the Found Family trope. This wasn’t nearly as good as the first book in the series, Warcross, but it still delivered. What I loved most about this book was the diversity of characters and how Lu wrapped up the series. I really enjoyed reading Wildcard. I loved the betrayal, the pacing, and the characters.