A Month of Faves 2019 |Favorite Books of the Year #amonthoffaves #orangecountyreads

Happy New Year! (Almost!) It’s my last post of the annual AMonthofFaves blog event with Girlxoxo and Traveling with T and it’s been a fantastic month of reflection and looking back at 2019.

Make sure to click the link below to see ALL the #amonthoffaves posts, (including last year’s answers) Click here!

Mon. | Dec. 30 – Favorite Books Read This Year #AMonthofFaves – squee-worthy reads!

I’m taking the easy way out and breaking down my favorites by genre.  Drumroll, please!


Non-Fiction is my second favorite genre after Historical Fiction. Biographies and memoirs have fascinated me since childhood. I particularly enjoy the personal narrative where we get a first-hand look at an actual experience in the author’s life.

My two favorite Nonfiction titles are very different. One is a tear-jerker and a tribute to books and the author’s mom. And one is a funny and self-deprecating dual memoir that was so relatable and honest.

  • The End of Your Life Bookclub by Will Schwalbe
  • Stay Sexy & Don’t Get Murdered: The Definitive How-To Guide by Karen Kilgariff, Georgia Hardstark


Young Adult

Young Adult is a category I’m eager to read more of. It typically tells the story from the point of view of a teenager and the main character loses innocence as part of the passage from childhood to adulthood. I think the need to learn, grow, and overcome challenges appeals to people of all ages.

The Speed of Falling Objects by Nancy Richardson Fischer did an excellent job of showing real complications and the difficulties of navigating adolescence. Danny is the child of divorced parents and her dad, Cougar, is the ultimate TV survivalist (think Bear Grylls). Cougar invites Danny to be in an episode of his show featuring Gus Price, a teen movie idol. When their plane crashes in the Amazon Danny must face incredible dangers, a complicated romance, a dark secret about the father she idolizes, and possible death.

  • The Speed of Falling Objects by Nancy Richardson Fischer


Let’s talk about love! From what I’ve seen, romance novels have both a central love story and an emotionally satisfying ending. Beyond that, romance novels can have any tone or style, be set in any place or time, and have varying levels of sensuality—ranging from sweet to extremely hot. It has subgenres like historical, erotic, suspense or young adult.

  • Tell Me Everything by Amy Hatvany is a juicy and insightful look at a modern marriage that pushes all the boundaries.
  • The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang has been waiting patiently for me and I thought it worthy of all the hype! Also, it’s impossible not to fall in love with Michael, right?

New Adult

New Adult is typically aimed at readers in the 18-30 bracket. It tackles the unique challenges of a young adult who is trying to find their own identity and voice, someone experiencing real adult responsibilities for the first time.

The two titles I chose for my favorites talk about love and acceptance, as well as workplace sexism and modern dating.

  • Red, White and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston
  • How to Hack a Heartbreak by Kristin Rockaway

Contemporary Fiction

This is a very broad category! Books in the contemporary fiction genre are made up of stories that could happen to real people in real settings. They usually take place in the same time period the reader is living (the present), with things that are currently, or could be happening, in the same time period.

My favorites in this category include a sweet story about an unlikely friendship and aging with dignity, a story about making a difference and service to others and a story about forgiveness and the healing power of music.

  • Everything You Are by Kerry Anne King 
  • The Enlightenment of Bees by Rachel Linden
  • The Great Unexpected by Dan Mooney

Historical Fiction

More than 75% of readers read Historical Fiction ‘to bring the past to life’ as the primary reason for reading historical fiction. I prefer authors who can be accurate but also weave together compelling stories.

From the internment camps in Texas to the concert halls of Vienna to the darkest days of Poland’s history, these three books were all five-star reads for me.


Books in the Thriller genre take the reader on a ride from start to finish. They pull you in, build tension with intriguing suspense, and keep you guessing until the very end!

My favorite thrillers this year all had exciting moments when the main character faced their biggest fears and we were able to put together all the clues that had been slowly revealed.

  • The Escape Room by Megan Goldin
  • The Passengers by John Marrs
  • The Mother-in-law by Sally Hepworth


Is this the only audiobook I listened to this year? Yes. Yes, it is! I’ve often wondered how people listen to audiobooks and was jealous of their multitasking skills. Thanks to a partnership with Libro.FM, I was given an ALC of American Dirt and have spent over 16 hours listening to the most incredible story by a narrator that has the most soothing voice. The time commitment was a lot, but I was simply mesmerized as I listened.  

  • American Dirt by Jeanine Cummins

Favorite Sequel

Favorite Sequel. Why did I wait so long to read Us Against You by Fredrik Backman?

I am in awe of Mr. Backman’s incredible talent for writing intense and emotional stories. He captures the essence of his flawed and angry characters and sends the reader on a rollercoaster ride as we see the best and worst sides of characters we came to know and love in Beartown. Maya and Ana. Leo. Peter. Ramona. Amat. Bobo. Benji. I cried. I almost threw the book. I raged. It was raw and real and full of heart and courage and love.

  • Us Against You by Fredrik Backman

Do we share any of the same favorites?

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  1. Lovely post! It looks like I have some reading to do ahah. I didn’t know about The Speed of Falling Objects, it sounds really good, I’ll have to add this to my TBR 🙂


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