Friday 21 December 2018

Blogmas Day 11: Top 5 Authors of 2018

Hi, and thanks for stopping by.

It's the penultimate day of Blogmas and I've decided to spend it celebrating my five favourite author discoveries of 2018. I really love spending an entire blog post talking about the special, wonderful writers I've read the books of and encouraging others to read and support their beautiful work, too. These are my favourite authors of 2018.

5. Kasie West

I have to admit I had a really tough time picking number 5 and that's mainly because there were only four authors I had in mind that I really wanted to gush about here. Then, just last week, I read Kasie West's P.S. I Like You in one sitting and loved it. I've also read On The Fence, The Distance Between Us and By Your Side this year and although P.S. I Like You is my favourite by far, I still gave each of these 4 stars , 4 stars and 3.5 stars, which I think is pretty impressive for reading just one author who has written multiple books (plus 5 stars for P.S.). I'm definitely going to make her remaining YA contemporary novels a priority to both buy and read in 2019.
I don't necessarily find Kasie West's books super emotive and they don't necessarily give me that "this book just altered my life a little" feeling that I long for and love, but they are always page-turners, always sweet, always easy to read and just those quintessential YA contemporaries that make you happy when you read them. Also, to write so many books and have each feel unique from the last is pretty cool.

4. Jenny Han

Okay, so technically Jenny Han is not a 2018 discovery for me. I've been reading and enjoying her books for years; longer than I've been blogging that's for sure. But this year I, like many people I'm sure, decided to reread the To All The Boys I've Loved Before trilogy when the gorgeous Netflix movie came out.
I had never actually read the third book, Always & Forever, Lara Jean, before, so that was technically a new discovery for me, I guess!! I read the first book in library-form initially and the second on my Kindle but after watching the film I just went ahead and ordered the trilogy from Amazon. It's on offer in a lot of places as of right now, if you're interested in buying/reading. 
I gave the first book 5-stars and the second two 4-stars each. I absolutely adored the reading experience; Lara Jean is definitely one of my favourite female protagonists in YA ever, because she's so relatable for me. She loves crafting, scrapbooking, baking, spending time with her family and avoiding the louder, messier, drunker forms of socialisation! 
I kind of want to reread The Summer I Turned Pretty trilogy next!!!

3. Gayle Forman

Gayle Forman isn't exactly a debut author at this point, but for me, 2018 has been the year I've really discovered her writing (and how amazing it is). Her writing just reads as so expertly constructed, always poignant, romances written to perfection, friendships complex and interesting and often as important as those aforementioned romances, atmosphere and setting key & there's always some element of self-discovery or exploration which I love and appreciate so much.
Just One Day was this HUGE surprise for me, because I fell in love (not only with the cute Parisian romance, which is adorable) with Allyson's story; she goes through such pain and confusion and isolation. There's brilliant representation of anxiety/depression surrounding university, which is especially important to me. I Have Lost My Way expertly weaves three people's stories together, once again brilliantly using the "one day" structure. The romance in I Was Here was one of my favourites I read this year.
I read If I Stay from the library a few years back I think, and I can't remember being especially blown away by it, but I found a near-perfect edition in the charity shop recently so I've bought it and plan to re-read it in 2019 for sure.

2. Akemi Dawn Bowman

Akemi Dawn Bowman is one of the most beautiful writers I've come across. In particular, her debut Starfish is absolutely stunning; it covers topic of sexual abuse, emotional abuse, sibling dynamics, social anxiety, suicide, art, romance, self-development, travel and so much more. Throughout this novel, I was occasionally reminded of Jandy Nelson's writing, which is basically the biggest compliment I can give another author, because Jandy Nelson is my absolute favourite YA author of all time. Summer Bird Blue is this unflinching, ugly, angry depiction of grief which is so bravely written; it is a repetitive, strained, at times frustrating reading experience but I love it for all of those reasons. I so appreciate that Akemi Dawn Bowman doesn't shy away from the darker side of life and human experience. It's also a pretty wonderful exploration of asexuality (although I cannot personally speak to its accuracy).
I think one of the most special things about Akemi Dawn Bowman's writing is how much she makes you feel for her characters, as though they were real, living, breathing human beings who you know and love and want only the best for. Her writing seems to come alive on the page; you can see all of the things that she is describing, you can feel the emotions her characters feel.
I cannot wait to see what she does next.

1. Francesca Zappia

Without a doubt my favourite author of 2018 HAS to be Francesca Zappia. I read Eliza and her Monsters back in January and knew instantly that both that book and its author would be on my favourites of the year list - and I was right!!! I then went on to read Made You Up later in the year and loved it just as much.
I can't put my finger on exactly what it is I love so much about Francesca Zappia's writing, it's just this feeling I get, similar to when I read Jandy Nelson or Jenn Bennett or Emery Lord or Rainbow Rowell - she's really going to be sat up there with these authors for me, as one of my ultimate favourites. She writes about such interesting themes like family relationships, grief, schizophrenia, being an introvert, fandom. Her characters are so vivid and interesting and unique. I literally will preorder whatever she writes next so fast!

So those are my favourite authors I've discovered in 2019!!! I'd love to know if you've read any of their writing and who your favourites of the year are, too! Let me know by leaving a comment down below.

Till next time



  1. I haven't read any of Katie West, but P.S. I Like You has a pretty cover and sounds interesting- I'll have to give that one a try first!

    1. Yes I love the cover - I think it must be the UK one, because her books usually have actual humans on them which I'm not such a fan of, haha!