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Fifteen 5 Star Books I Always Recommend

Thursday, March 9, 2023

Because I read so much, I'm always being asked for recommendations. I don't think people realize what a loaded question this is! I am all to eager to talk books! Over the years, I find that there are a hand full of books I'm always recommending over and over. This is of course, is not a comprehensive list of every book I've given 5 stars to. Just the ones I feel comfortable recommending to people of all ages.

Recently, I did a little book shop hop with a fellow book lover! It was really fun talking about our favorite books - and that's what inspired this post! 

This might be my all time favorite. This is a sweeping WWII story of two sisters as they survive one of the worst times in history. I was captivated, and definitely cried. The ending caught me off guard and is very moving. 

I read this a few years ago when we were in the OBX with family. I think I read it in a single day, and then passed it around to several family members because they saw how I was glued! This is a thriller if I ever saw one. Basically, this woman has memory loss. Every day she wakes up and doesn't remember anything for the last few years. Her husband has to remind her every day who she is and what's happened to her. This thriller starts when she finds her secret journal that's she has been keeping all along. 

A coming of age story that I just really enjoyed. It's a classic for a reason! This is about a girl named Francie and her family at the turn of the century in Brooklyn.

Ender's Game is a book I read in High School, and I just loved it. It's one of the books that got me into reading in the first place! In Ender's world, the government is determined to be prepared for an alien attack. They train kids to be soldiers at a battle school in space to get ready. I just loved the characters in this book and it really sucks you in. 

An excellent story that will suck you in as well! This is about Jacob, who joins the circus when he is left desperate during the Great Depression. He almost finished veterinarian school, so he is eager to work with the animals. Everything changes with the circus acquires an elephant named Rosie. 

The Help is a pretty popular movie at this point, but in case you aren't familiar: This is a story about a few different women in Jackson, Mississippi in the 60s. Some of them are black women who work as maids, and they get together with a writer to come up with a tell all book about their experience. 

Everyone I have recommended this to texts me at some point crying their eyes out. It's so sad, but also so good! This is about a little Irish girl whose family dies on the way to America. She's alone when she arrives, so she is sold to a plantation owner. The black enslaved people there end up raising her. She feels that they are her family, but of course she is very white. This story follows her as she grows up. 

This is a fun one! It's about Tucker, a college dropout. He gets a job at a Chinese restaurant as a chef even though he's not Chinese. Some Chinese gangsters show up looking for some diamonds that his new girlfriend supposedly stole. Beware that you will have a big craving for real Chinese food after this!

The best way to describe this is a wild ride! It's a memoir of Tara Westover, a woman who grew up unconventionally. Her parents 'home schooled' her, in that they didn't. But, she had a thirst for knowledge and strives to learn. The worst, strangest, and oddest things happen to this family! 

Hard to explain, but this is about a man who has a medical condition that makes him live for an extremely long time. He's centuries years old at this point. It's rare, but others have this syndrome too, and they've got a secret club. I love Matt Haig as an author and really enjoyed this story.

It's 1935 and three women are in Key West. There was a real life hurricane Labor Day weekend that year, and these women are in the very wrong place and time. I also enjoyed Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton - and the Last Train to Key West is in the same universe. 

A really cool book! This explores the idea that there are infinite directions our life can go based on the decisions we make. Nora gets to explore the routes not taken and see if she should have made different decisions. 

Hubert calls his daughter every week. He lives in London, she lives in Australia. Every week he regales her with all the fun he's been having during his retirement. She's coming to visit! But the problem is everything he's told her is a lie. He is very lonely and doesn't have any friends, and doesn't leave his house much at all. This is just a really sweet book with a nice message. 

I know sci-fi isn't for everybody, but give this one a chance if it's not! This is sci-fi, but approachable. In short, Ryland wakes up on a space ship with zero memories. And, the whole crew is dead. As his memories return, he has to decide to complete the mission he set out to do. It's so so good. It goes in a direction I never saw coming. 

This was one of my favorite books of 2022! It's a wholesome, heartwarming, murder mystery. I never thought I'd describe a book about murder that way, haha. Molly is a maid in a luxury hotel. She takes her job very seriously. Everything is going great until she stumbles upon a dead body in one of the suites. 


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Hi friends! I'm Kristen, and this is the Life and Style of an early 30's Floridian living the Best Life Ever, with her husband and three pugs. Runner | Avid Reader | Small Shop Owner

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