Now that I think about it, my 2018 goal to read 10 books in a year was such a breeze. I decided to up my game and challenge myself to reading 12 books in 2019. One book a month, still a feat for babies.
1. Becoming by Michelle Obama
I started off the year with the former FLOTUS’ book merely out of FOMO (fear of missing out). I have no regrets though, there’s a reason why it seemed like everyone was reading it. I enjoyed reading about the young Michelle growing up, her love life and her journey alongside Barack getting to the White House. This was my only autobiography in 2019 and it lived up to the hype that everyone gave it.
2. A Spark of Light – Jodi Picoult
This was my favourite book in 2019. The author tackles the different societal takes on abortion in a very fascinating way. I couldn’t put this book down. If I rated books I’d give it 5 Stars. Absolutely brilliant book. I’m looking forward to reading more of Jodi Picoult’s work. For the first time, I read the author’s note about the research process she carried out for her book and I learnt a lot more about the different arguments on abortion.
3. Blue like Jazz – Donald Miller
Donald Miller explains Christianity in a non-preachy way. Very honest look at how sometimes we as Christians like to make religion difficult for each other. You know any atheists or anyone questioning God? Send them a copy. (You can send it to your Christian friends too 😅)
4. The Ice Cream Girls – Dorothy Koomson
Dorothy Koomsoon is fun! The ending of this book was kind of dark and unexpected. Her two lead characters are such opposites and yet endured the same kind of emotional abuse. I’m one of those people who judge books by their covers, so I was was sold by the book’s title and cover (obviously had girls with ice creams). The story was not what I expected it to be from the cover but I was pleasantly surprised. Turns out there’s a Crime Drama TV adaptation of the book, if anyone is keen.
5. The 5 Love Languages – Gary Chapman
One of those books I wish I had read earlier in life. It’s basically a guide (somewhat) on how to show love to others in a way they understand love. I had a bit of a reflection when I was reading this book on what my love languages are and how they relate to how I’ve received and given love since I was a child.
6. The Kiss Quotient – Helen Hoang
I like to get back to fiction after a self help book. Reading for fun. Autistic girl looks for love. Very unconventional love story. I also read the author’s note here and I liked the background on the autism spectrum. I’ll definitely be learning more on conditions relating to socialization and communication.
7. The Woman He Loved Before – Dorothy Koomson
I had to read another Dorothy Koomsoon! In this novel, the author follows the stories of a woman and her husband’s late wife when she finds her (the latter’s) old journals. Riveting book! There’s prostitution from extreme poverty, drug abuse and even a pimp! All of it knitted in so well it plays on your sympathy. Excellent book!
8. The Looting Machine – Tom Burgis
There’s a lot of things I was clueless about with regards African geo-politics that I learnt through this book. Tom Burgis does a great job painting the political picture in a non-boring way. Eye opening account of post-colonial Africa. I’ll recommend this book to anyone’s who wants a quick overview on African post-colonial history.
9. An American Marriage – Tayari Jones
My second favourite book of the year. Compelling yet heartbreaking love story. No spoilers, I’m totally recommending this novel.
10. Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency – Douglas Adams
Any fans of the “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” here? Here’s another one from Douglas Adams absolute funny play with fantasy and imagination. This is a pretty long book so be prepared for a long yet amusing journey through the impossible.
11. Normal People – Sally Rooney
Another unusual love story that doesn’t quite go the way that any of the other love stories I read normally progresses. The book follows the complex relationship between two friends all the way from High School until tertiary education.
12. Travelling Light – Max Lucado
Simple book on unburdening yourself while guiding you through Psalm 23. This was an superb way to wrap up the year!
I’m raising my bar again this year aiming to read 24 four books before the end of the year. I’m off to a great start! I’ll take any recommendations for your favorite books that I can read this year.
Until next year (for the next book update).