Where has the time gone? 2016 has come and gone, I spent the year with my nose in a book reading wonderful stories, taking characters to my heart and learning lessons along the way.
Here are the top 5 books I read in 2016, not all new releases but books I have adored and will be reading time and time again.
Here goes in no particular order.
The Last First Kiss
Author: Ali Harris
Date released: 2013
Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK
This book touched my heart, the story hasn’t left me, I still think of these characters and it tort me so much about life and love.
Ryan and Molly were complete opposite but as they say opposites attract, they fell in love when they were teenagers, when they had their first kiss on the dance floor. We see their love story over a period of time, taking you through the ups and the downs of their relationship, from their first to their last kiss. Get tissues ready you will need them, make that two packets.
Just when you think they are getting their happy ending tragedy strikes, it left me heart-broken, I wasn’t ready for it or expecting it and what happened next was such a poignant, beautiful and wonderfully written story.
This book is about a love story before and after a tragedy, mistakes we make in relationships taking your relationship for granted and how silly they are in the grand scheme of things. It reminds you to cherish life and those you love, you can’t take life for granted. The story also looks at how you love after loss, even when your heart is shattered into a million pieces, when your life has taken you on an unexpected and unwanted new course, how you can be happy again, find new but a different type of love, a heart can be mended through love but you take the love you lost in your heart.
A beautifully told story, these characters will steal your heart. Ali Harris did a wonderful job at being brutally honest and respectful of a subject millions go through each year a simply stunning read.
Author: Dani Atkins
Released date: 2016
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Four people, two marriages, one fateful night, their past and present collide.
Ally and David are an unlikely couple after meeting at university, they see the world through different eyes, their out look on life is from their different up bringing but David’s love for Ally is real. He was deeply in love with her until someone from his past enters the picture who is his new housemate at his university house. Ally and David separate never seeing each other till years later, an illness and an accident bring them back in to each other lives and their current partners.
Their lives took different directions, Ally kept a secret and that comes out on that fateful night. The past is brought to light now in the present, having to deal with what happened all those years ago and dealing with two lives being in the balance in the present day.
We see what has happened through the years when they weren’t together, we are left on the edge of our book pages, thinking are both or will only one make it, if so which and what will the outcome be.
The story and the characters kept me turning each page, wanting to know the ending, leaving tear drops on the pages. this is a gorgeous read of first loves, destiny, secrets and heartache also such a sweet loving story.
Author: JoJo Moyes
Release date: 2016
This was JoJo Moyes sequel to Me Before You, the book that captured all of our hearts and got us talking about our right to die when we want to when your seriously ill. I was on tender hooks whether this book was going to live up to that spectacular story. Of course it wasn’t going to leave me with the same feeling no other book can not even the sequel, but it left me with a different but equally beautiful feeling. a heartfelt feeling of loving Lou Clark Even more and being over joyed at her taking her life into her own hands and doing what Will wanted her to do and that was to JUST LIVE.
The story picks up a year after Will’s death, Lou is in a dead-end job working in a bar in a hotel airport, she is bumbling through life. An accident and a new unexpected character brings her back to living and loving again.
This book had me wondering if Will new about this new character would he have chosen to live, the what if question we will never know the answer to?
I couldn’t get enough of Lou Clark, its like she is your best friend and you are going on this journey with her trying to find her place in the world, learning to live without Will and finding out what she wants out of life. Seeing Lou fly into her new life made me proud of her and I thought of Will looking down on her smiling and saying “good on you Clark”.
Always With Love
Author: Giovanna Fletcher
Date released: 2016
Always With Love is the sequel to Billy And Me and it continues straight after the short Christmas story Gi did of Christmas with Billy and Me. Sophie is plucked out of her little quaint village of Rosefont Hill and thrust into the glamorous world of Los Angeles and meeting Billy’s family.
Always with love is a wonderful book, Sophie is a strong woman but doesn’t know it and in this book she finds herself and what she wants out of her life. We see such a different Sophie in Always With Love, she is finally seeing that she is capable, she can stand on her own two feet but learns she can ask for help if she needs it, that’s not a weakness its a strength.
As with Billy And Me Sophie questions her future with Billy, not doubting their love for each other but the fact their lives are so different when they are apart, she doesn’t no if it can work. Sophie wants stability, to know the path her life is going to take her on and with Billy’s career she doesn’t have that. their future is so unknow to her, she has to deal with it and accept it, she knew when she first met him that their lives would keep them apart at times. Yes Billy doesn’t know where his career will take him and he misses her just as much when their apart as she does but she has to learn their love will keep them strong even when they are apart. they need to find the balance of them both being happy in their careers and in their relationship, they just have to be honest with each other along the way of how they feel.
In this book Sophie grew so much, saying goodbye to the past and finding a way to move forward with her life. she always wondered if what happened with her father and how her mum copied with it stopped her from leaving Rosefont Hill, if her wings were clipped and she was forced to stay there. she realised her wings weren’t clipped, she was soaring in the place she loved, doing the thing she was passionate about, some need to go, leave the place they grew up to find out who they are but she knew who she was all alone it just took her awhile to realise it.
The One We Fell In Love With
Author: Paige Toon
Paige Toon is my favourite author, I couldn’t wait to have her new book The One We Fell In Love in my hands.
Identical triplets Phoebe, Eliza and Rose may have the exact same DNA but they were complete opposites, they had nothing in common until they laid their eyes on Angus the new boy next door who they all fall for.
One gets the boy and is set to marry him, who will it be?
I love Paige Toon’s books, they always leave me with a smile on my face and this didn’t fail to do the same, though I was smiling by the end, the bit in the middle was a lot of a deeper story than Paige’s previous books.
It’s the relationship between the three sisters that is gripping, in any ordinary sibling relationship things can be difficult, for these three there is the added pressure of having their own identity, finding themselves though at times it took them further away from each other.
Phoebe was the adventurous one this brought her and her dad together, they loved to rock climb, that passion made her go to France to be a guide before university. Rose was the smart sensible one, she follows her mothers foot steps going to London to study to be a nurse, though realising that isn’t her passion in life. on the journey of the story Roses voice becomes the primary voice, we see her grow, step out of her sisters shadows and she finds the person she was always meant to be.
.Though they were all in love with the same boy and one got him it wasn’t really about him, it was always about the three of them. there was tension and resentment between the sisters both Eliza and Rose viaing for Phoebe’s attention. she had always been the funny lovable one, people were drawn to but it pushed Rose and Eliza apart when they had been close years ago. Phoebe hadn’t mean for this to happen, there wasn’t any malice in her actions just love for her sisters. It was lovely to see Rose and Eliza’s friendship flourish and blossom as adults to see them becoming sisters and friends.
The way Paige told this story was beautiful and really believable, the characters were so honest and real, I could understand each of them as individuals and the decisions they made throughout the book. you connect to them, you get to see their lives through each of their eyes and each of their hearts and feelings.
There is a big twist that I didn’t see coming that changes the story, their lives aren’t the same, there’s questions that need answering, self guilt that needs to be for given and they all need to find their way to a life they want to lead and not feel guilty for.
No matter there ups and downs the sisters will always be triplets they will always love each other.
This story will have you in tears one minute but smiling by the end.
I hope you have enjoyed my top 5 books of 2016, let me know what you thought of the books and what were your favourite books of 2016.
Peanut (Laura) xx