This is a very hard list to make. Nearly impossible actually, considering the number of books I’ve read and fallen in love with. That being said, this is not necessarily an accurate post of my favorite books, that is always changing, but all of the books on this list do hold a special place in my heart. The only one that is actually going to be rated in its proper place is the one I choose for #1. So anyway, on with the books:
10. The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom
- This is actually a weird one to be on my list because when it comes to anything religious, I normally have no interest but this book surprisingly does a good job of not focusing on the religion aspect of things and instead really focusing on the story itself. The novel follows Eddie, a maintenance man, who dies trying to save a little girl. Eddie is then sent to Heaven where he meets five people who had an impact on his life at one point or another. Although this book ultimately has sad undertones, I mean the guy is dead, it is a wonderfully, feel-good type of story that leaves you feeling all of the feels.
9. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
- Catching Fire is the second novel in the Hunger Games series and my personal favorite (though I love all three novels). The story follows Katniss and Peeta after the events of the Games as they go on their tour of all of the districts, meanwhile an uprising has begun, and eventually the pair are dragged back into the games again. This book is almost tied with the first novel for favorite for me, but I just find this novel a little more exciting and non-stop. It feels like the moment you start it, you go on a journey that leads to all sorts of twists and turns.
8. Hollow City by Ransom Riggs
- Another sequel in a series, Hollow City, has actually become a recent favorite of mine. The novel is the sequel to Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, and it starts off directly where the first one leaves us, and never seems to slow down from there. The story is full of difficult decisions for the children but you also get to see sides of all of the children that I feel wasn’t exposed in the first novel.
7. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
- I have only read this book once and am afraid to read it again for the rush of emotions that this story brings, and mostly somber ones at that. Thirteen Reasons Why follows Clay as he discovers he is one of thirteen people that led Hannah Baker, a classmate and his crush, to committing suicide. Hannah, before her death, recorded cassette tapes and each side of each cassette tape was a different person’s story and how it connected to hers and the events that ultimately led up to her death. The tapes are sent around to each of the different people so that they can hear just how they impacted her. This novel is masterfully written and an amazing debut novel for Jay Asher. It’s a harrowing story that really shows just how big an impact words and actions can have on a person.
6. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
- This is a beautifully written story of one of the most celebrated geisha in Japan. Golden studied Japanese culture for years and was eventually inspired to write this story after meeting a man who was the illegitimate child of a business man and a geisha. He then studied the culture behind the geisha and upon reading this novel you can see the dedication and not only is it a beautiful, sad, happy, and just generally emotional story, it’s also an excellent window into that world. The story itself follows Chiyo, who is born into a small fishing town, whose mother dies and her father ends up selling her and her sister into slavery. The story then follows Chiyo as she turns into Sayuri and begins to learn how to become a geisha. From there, we follow her journey as a geisha during one of Japan’s hardest times in history.
5. I, Robot by Isaac Asimov
- When it comes to science fiction, there are a few major names that will come up in conversation, and Asimov is definitely towards the top of that list of names. In I, Robot, Asimov informs us of the three laws of robotics, laws that every robot must abide by. We’re then taken on a journey of interconnecting stories that take place during the present and in the future, from the most rudimentary model of a robot to the advanced species of the future, explaining the evolution of the creatures and also telling a story that’s entertaining, exciting, and full of robot-awesomeness.
4. Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare
- Clockwork Princess is the third novel in The Infernal Devices trilogy is by far my favorite novel in the trilogy and my favorite novel by Cassandra Clare. The trilogy is set in Victorian times with a bit of a steampunk inspiration that I love. But the third novel is definitely the most tense, emotional, beautiful, and sad of the trilogy. The novel picks up where the sequel left off, with Tessa discovering more about exactly who she is, and the Shadowhunters working to defeat Mortmain. But what ends up happening by the end is the Shadow world changing significantly for both the Shadowhunters and Downworlders. I love this book, it’s full of action and romance and challenges, and it’s just my favorite novel between The Infernal Devices and The Mortal Instruments series. I also have a serious love-hate relationship with the ending because as beautiful as it is, it’s also incredibly sad and I sob uncontrollably every time I read it.
3. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
- Yet another novel that I adore but breaks my heart every time I read it, or watch the wonderfully done movie that was made based on the novel. In The Fault in Our Stars, we follow Hazel, a survivor of Stage IV cancer, as her parents, who believe her to be clinically depressed, make her go to a cancer support group, that takes place in the ‘literal heart of Jesus’. While in this support group, Hazel meets Augustus Waters, a fellow cancer survivor, and the pair hit it off immediately. In an attempt to understand one another better, the pair decide to read each others favorite novels, which for Hazel is An Imperial Affliction, a story about a young girl who has cancer. Augustus becomes intrigued by the novel as well and it eventually leads the two on an adventure to meet the author. The story is a beautiful and yet very different love story, that of course ends in heartbreak, because, of course, the novel deals with the terrible thing that is cancer. But despite the ending, which rips my heart out and makes me cry forever, it is a wonderful story about young love and being true to yourself.
2. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
- When I think of sci-fi comedy, the first book that comes to mind is The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. This novel is absolutely hilarious and full of sci-fi fun, what’s better then that really. The novel follows Arthur Dent, a very seemingly average human man, who is rescued from Earth by his friend Ford Prefect before Earth is obliterated. The pair then end up on a hitchhiking journey that will leave you in tears from laughing.
and lastly the novel that is actually in the number one spot on my list of favorite novels:
1. The entire Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
- I know until now, the rest of this list has been individual novels but when it comes to my favorite novels of all time, it is definitely this series and I can’t pick just one of the novels to list here. I grew up with these novels, I was the type who anticipated each release, pre-ordering the books, and waiting not so patiently for each one to come out. I was young when the characters were young and I grew up and dealt with a lot of the same teenage drama that these characters dealt with at the same time, just minus the whole magic school and fighting the forces of evil bit. Rowling did a masterful job creating a world so fascinating and a story filled with so many twists and turns and major events. Each novel, even my least favorite, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, hold a special place in my heart, and the stories will stay with me always.