After three weeks of list after list after list, we’ve finally come to the end. And that final list is my top six books of 2017. Even though I’ve had a mediocre reading year, I still read some absolutely fantastic books this year. In order to make this list, I simply had to have read the book for the first time this year and loved it. Coincidentally, however, they are all 2017 releases. If you’ll remember, I already talked about my honorable mentions and best series earlier in the week, so this list is just the cream of the crop. But you’ve done enough waiting. Here is my list of the very best books of the year:
- A Conjuring of Light by V.E. Schwab (Release Date: February 21):
The final book of the Shades of Magic trilogy, this harrowing conclusion gave me everything I wanted and then some. This installment was the darkest and most dangerous yet; I had to keep taking breaks, it was so intense. Each character’s arc made perfect sense and never felt forced. This novel truly cemented the Shades of Magic series as one of my all-time favorites. I can’t wait to see what Victoria will do with Threads of Power.
- A Crown of Wishes by Roshani Chokshi (Release Date: March 23):
When I wrote my review back in May, I predicted that this book was going to be on this list. Obviously, I was correct. This book did everything right: the character arcs were great, the romance progressed appropriately for the characters involved, and the plot was exciting. It has that lyrical, flowery writing that I love. This novel also played with some tropes in a way I liked. For example, Gauri takes the role of the warrior, while Vikram is more of a strategist. Usually it’s the other way around. This is also one of the few examples of the hate-to-love trope done right. I loved this novel and can’t wait to read what Roshani has planned next.
- Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare (Release Date: May 23):
In terms of characters and world-building, Cassandra Clare is hard to beat. And yet, it seems that she’s outdone herself in the second installment of The Dark Artifices. I get into this a lot in my review, but this series is progressively becoming more and more character-driven and I am all for it. Once again, we get some beautiful arcs and relationships. I love the dark vibe this novel has, the atmosphere nerve-wracking. This book is also the book that impacted me the most this year, in terms of emotion. And honestly? If this is what we get for the middle of the series, then Queen of Air and Darkness’ finale is going to murder me. Fall 2018, please hurry up!
- The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee (Release Date: June 27):
Out of all the books on this list, this one was probably the biggest surprise. I expected to enjoy it, but I thought it was going to be a light, gay romp and nothing more. But this book was emotional with great characters. Monty wound up being one of the characters I related to the most this year. We both have the same challenges and anxieties when it comes to people. This book was equal parts funny and genuine, a wonderful mix of humor and truth. If I could reiterate anything from my review, it’s that this was one of the most romantic books of the year and easily the best coming-of-age story. An underrated gem indeed.
- Warcross by Marie Lu (Release Date: September 12):
Even though I’ve loved Marie’s previous series, this one is the only one that really blew me away from the first book. The story itself was fair and lacked in character development for everyone outside Emika and Hideo, but I love its potential. The ending of this book set up something truly rare in young adult literature: a morally ambiguous conflict with no traditional villain. I also really liked the romance, though it did have to grow on me. The technology is also incredibly cool and actually something I would want in real life. Even though I didn’t have much to say in my mini-review, this book is truly one of the best I read all year. I can’t wait to see where Marie takes this story.
- Jane, Unlimited by Kristin Cashore (Release Date: September 19):
This novel is one of the most unique books I’ve ever read. Modeled after the choose-you-own-adventure format, we get five different interconnected stories. Despite the slower pace, it’s a fascinating book with earth-shattering revelations. It also plays with character and genre, asking what exactly makes you you. There’s also a budding romance between two women and it’s really cute. I had hoped to like this book, but I didn’t expect to love it as much as I do. When I wrote my review, it took everything in me not just just rave about it. While last year I recommended The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis to everyone, this year I’m recommending Jane, Unlimited.
Do you agree with any of my choices? What do you think were the best books released this year? What were the best books you read this year? Tell me about them in the comments!