Looking for a brilliant read for a teen in your life?

Here we are, day 3 of my gift guide. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading them! It’s been a blast looking back at my year in books and thinking which ones I would recommend people buy and read AND SHOVE IN EACH OTHERS FACES *ahem*.

Today, on this here final day of recommending, I’m sorting through the MANY MANY YA books I’ve read this year and giving you 12 that you ABSOLUTELY need to buy for the YA fan in your life! (Just as the past few days, none of these books will REALLY come as a surprise!) Without further ado…

2018 ya recs

Scythe/Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman

The Exact Opposite of Okay by Laura Steven

State of Sorrow by Melinda Salisbury (while we’re at it… The Sin Eater’s Daughter trilogy too, LBR)

Goodbye Perfect by Sara Barnard (and ANY of her other books too)

More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

Show Stopper/Show Stealer by Hayley Barker

White Rabbit, Red Wolf by Tom Pollock

The Secret Deep by Lindsay Galvin

Theatrical by Maggie Harcourt

Clean by Juno Dawson

Only Love Can Break Your Heart by Katherine Webber (and Wing Jones too)

Floored by the Floored Seven

TADAAAAH. You made it. This list could’ve been so much longer. GO AND BUY THEM ALL. READ THEM ALL. LOVE THEM ALL.

Do you agree with my recommendations?
Can you add any to my list?
Which of these books have you loved most?

Talk to me in the comments! Are you SHOCKED by my choices?

S x

The Bank Holiday Tag

Happy bank holiday everyone! Last one of the year! 

Today I’m taking on the Bank Holiday Tag, made up by my lovely friend Cora. Check out her original post here. I’ve actually done this post before, back in April – if you’d like to see my answers and compare them, you’ll find that post here. I’m going to try and complete this based on the books I’ve read so far in 2018!

Have a lie in.
Which book could you lounge in bed with all morning?

40203682Snowglobe – Amy Wilson
This is a lush story with magic and lush friends. It’s one I’m definitely going to reread!

Oh my goodness, it’s actually sunny outside!
A book that makes you feel optimistic.

19547856Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda – Becky Albertalli
Simon and Blue are EVERYTHING. But also, Simon’s parents and his sister.

Spend some time outdoors.
A book that reminds you of nature.

38210965When The Mountains Roared – Jess Butterworth
I’ve never been transported to the mountains in India surrounded by big cats before this book and it was incredible.

Make some punch.
A book that you find difficult to classify into one genre.

38600182The Secret Deep – Lindsay Galvin
This book is so intricate and brilliantly written that it would happily sit in many different places in a bookworm’s world.

Pass some food around.
A book you want to share with everyone.

26030734The Wild Robot – Peter Brown
I ADORE this book with all that I am. I have read the sequel now too and I just… it is such a love. Roz is an excellent main character. (This could also be the answer to the nature question!)

Light the BBQ.
A book that took a while to get going.

39127492The Smoke Thieves – Sally Green
It’s a shame this book takes like 60-70% to get going, because once it’s going I quite liked it! 

Failed BBQ.
A book that ultimately disappointed you.

35068735All of this is True – Lygia Day Penaflor
Oh friends. 

It’s raining. Of course.
A book to curl up with when it’s raining outside.

23437156Six of Crows – Leigh Bardugo
I can’t wait to reread this book. I love Kaz Brekker so much. This is the perfect rainy day read because let’s be real, it’s always raining in Ketterdam.

Let’s just eat the chocolate.
A book that’s super sweet.

34615412Theatrical – Maggie Harcourt
I love Maggie’s books. They always just make me smile and that’s what you need sometimes!

There we go! Join in the fun, and do the tag yourself! Enjoy your bank holiday everyone!

S x

The Superlatives book tag

Hello! Happy Tuesday everyone. 

Today, I’ve been tagged by the lovely Kelly (of Kelly’s Rambles) to take part in the ‘Superlatives book tag’. Now, as many of you know Kelly is one of my best friends and we share quite a similar bookish reading taste, so when I read her post I was like “YOU’VE STOLEN SO MANY OF THE BOOKS I WOULD CHOOSE”so if you’re interested in knowing other choices that I would’ve made, then check out Kelly’s post

I’m a big fan of a tag because I think they’re super fun! Don’t forget I’ve created my own tag – The Friends Tag – that you can join in with, or you can guest post on my blog too!

Here we go… I’m going to go with books I’ve read in 2018 to fulfil these prompts!

MOST LIKELY TO BE IN THE MOVIES: THE BOOK THAT WOULD MAKE THE BEST MOVIE

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I can’t not say Six of Crows. I would ABSOLUTELY love to see this made into a film. It’s one of the best books I’ve read this year and I would love to see Kaz on screen. Kaz and his merry bunch of Dregs. I think Six of Crows would make an incredible film. Can someone make this happen please?

BIGGEST DRAMA QUEEN/KING: THE MOST (OVERLY) DRAMATIC BOOK OR CHARACTER

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There’s characters in All of this is True that I couldn’t get away with because they were just a bit OTT for me. Like, this book never did quite catch up for me. 

BEST DRESSED: THE BOOK WITH THE BEST COVER

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I can’t not go for Clean. I mean, look at that rose gold goodness. *swoon*

MOST CREATIVE: THE BOOK WITH THE MOST UNIQUE PLOT, CHARACTERS, & STRUCTURE

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I don’t think I’ve read anything quite as spooky, sciencey and underwater-y as The Secret Deep. I absolutely adored it. Lindsay Galvin has written an ABSOLUTE winner here. I implore you all to read it. 

MOST POPULAR: THE BOOK WITH THE MOST RATINGS ON GOODREADS

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I finished Northern Lights recently and it has a whopping 1,082,925 ratings on Goodreads! 

MOST LIKELY TO SUCCEED: THE BOOK THAT IS GOING TO BE APPRECIATED FOR MANY YEARS TO COME

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Matt Haig writes the most amazing books. I think his books have incredible staying power and as long as there’s technology in our lives, Notes on a Nervous Planet also has a place in our lives. 

CLASS CLOWN: THE BOOK THAT MADE YOU LAUGH OUT LOUD

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Maz NEVER fails to make me laugh. Who Let The Gods Out? series is one I could’ve used to answer the prompt before too. Beyond the Odyssey is hilarious. Everyone I know who I’ve made read the series have said they’ve loved them. Please go out and check them out. They will, I promise, make you laugh, a lot. 

MOST IMPROVED: THE BOOK THAT STARTED OFF SLOW, BUT REALLY PICKED UP

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It took me a WHILE to get into The Smoke Thieves, but once you’re into the action, it’s very much there. There’s a lot going on in this book, with many points of view, but stick with it… 

CUTEST COUPLE: CUTEST COUPLE IN A BOOK

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Holly and Ed from My Box-Shaped Heart are just lush. I can’t say any more than that. Their whole situation made me smile a lot. 

BIGGEST HEARTBREAKER: THE BOOK THAT BROKE YOUR HEART

(LOL, they all do, all the time)

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Ah man. A Thousand Perfect Notes? More like a thousand tears of sadness. Even now thinking about it makes me a bit emotional. It’s just harrowing. 

And there we have it! My 2018 books I’ve read superlatives list! 

I’m not going to tag anyone because everyone I know has already been tagged… but if you fancy it, have a go!

Let me know in the comments if you agree with any of my choices, or what you’d change!

S x

BLOG TOUR: The Secret Deep

The Secret Deep: thrilling, captivating and a little bit terrifying!

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When Aster wakes alone on a tropical island, she has no idea what has happened, why she is there, or where to find her younger sister, Poppy. Meanwhile Sam, who once met the sisters on a plane, makes links between the mystery of their disappearance and suspicious happenings in his own life. In a stunning dual narrative, the truth unravels with devastating effect – and the answer lies in the secret underwater world surrounding the desert island, populated by the beautiful and the impossible…”

My first instincts when I picked up this book were “OMG LOOK AT THAT COVER THOUGH”. That cover is exceptional. You can’t see it particularly well in my picture, but there are little details on the cover of little bubbles. I’m all about this blue theme going on in the cover. 

The title also intrigued me INSTANTLY. The Secret Deep? What’s the secret? Deep? They’re clearly going underwater, or in the water. As a keen swimmer (I bet you didn’t know that!) I was very curious to know what was going on. The tag line “The deeper she dives, the darker it gets” hooked me too cause I guessed that it didn’t just mean the absence of light… and there is so much more than just an absence of light!

The Secret Deep tells the story of Aster and her sister Poppy, who lose their mum to cancer and who have to go live with their auntie. Their auntie lives on an “ecovillage” and is some kind of scientist. Aster and Poppy are given bands (a bit like fitbits) to track their sleeping and other habits, which immediately gets Aster suspicious instantly. When something goes wrong and Aster ends up stranded on an island, without her sister, or her auntie… things start to get interesting. There’s mystery, an underwater setting, a beautiful writing style that will make you want to read on no doubt!

Once I started reading, I knew that I had hit on an absolute winner here. I was away for the weekend with my mam and one of my aunties so I had a weekend to just read and enjoy it. I sat on the balcony and just devoured this book in a matter of hours. There’s so many different themes explored in this book that I could go on for hours. This book deals with medical consent, grief, sibling relationships, friendships, trust and the complexities of families.

While we’re here on families… the auntie in this book is just… she has questionable morals for sure. She’s sinister and I would not like to be caught anywhere with herland or sea. (She gave me vibes of J from The Loneliest Girl in the Universe too!) Here we have two young girls who are meant to be being looked after by their auntie, but obviously that is not the way it turns out to be! I need you all to read it and appreciate how utterly sinister the auntie is – regardless of what she says her motives are. 

This book hit quite a personal chord with me as it explores genes, more specifically cancer genes. A someone who has been diagnosed (is that the right word?) with a cancer gene, it was compelling for me to read it in a story and see that these things are being talked about. I was taken aback at first as this was the first time that I’d read anything about gene studies in relation to cancer. 

A little shout out here to Sam, because he is an absolute darling. It’s so refreshing to read stories that have just a good character in them. Someone who doesn’t have an ulterior motive, who just wants to help and who is there when he is needed most. I really liked Sam, an interesting juxtaposition of him and the auntie (who we all know, creeped me out a little!)

There’s a gorgeous mix in this book of science, survival and sisterhood. What wouldn’t you do for the ones you love?

My goodreads review reads:

A complex and beautiful story of Aster, a young girl who loses her mother to cancer, who has to move to live with her auntie in New Zealand. What meets her there isn’t the usual life – there’s science, the sea, some tracking devices and much more. 

I really enjoyed this – an exploration of medical consent, family, grief and trust. Can you always trust your family?

Have you read The Secret Deep?
Is being stranded on a desert island your worst nightmare?
Do you reckon you would survive?

Let me know what you thought in the comments! 

THE SECRET DEEP is out now in paperback (£6.99, Chicken House)
 
Connect with Lindsay on Twitter: @lindsaygalvin
 

Find out more at lindsaygalvin.com and chickenhousebooks.com  

You should 100% check out the rest of the posts on the blog tour – they are all incredible! 

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S x