There have been a lot of books over the years that I have read and that I cannot stop thinking about. The best thing about reading is escaping reality but also looking into the lives of characters and learning about yourself through the characters and stories presented to you. I love books that make me ponder my own life and existence on Earth. All of these books on this list have been touching to me in some kind of way and have made me deeply emotional. These books were read in the past two years and I still cannot stop thinking about them.
1. Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
From the bestselling author of Everything I Never Told You, a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of the picture-perfect Richardson family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives. In Shaker Heights, a placid, progressive suburb of Cleveland, everything is planned--from the layout of the winding roads, to the colors of the houses, to the successful lives its residents will go on to lead. And no one embodies this spirit more than Elena Richardson, whose guiding principle is playing by the rules. Enter Mia Warren--an enigmatic artist and single mother--who arrives in this idyllic bubble with her teenaged daughter Pearl, and rents a house from the Richardsons. Soon Mia and Pearl become more than tenants: all four Richardson children are drawn to the mother-daughter pair. But Mia carries with her a mysterious past and a disregard for the status quo that threatens to upend this carefully ordered community. When old family friends of the Richardsons attempt to adopt a Chinese-American baby, a custody battle erupts that dramatically divides the town--and puts Mia and Elena on opposing sides. Suspicious of Mia and her motives, Elena is determined to uncover the secrets in Mia's past. But her obsession will come at unexpected and devastating costs. Little Fires Everywhere explores the weight of secrets, the nature of art and identity, and the ferocious pull of motherhood--and the danger of believing that following the rules can avert disaster.
2. Love and Other Words by Christina Lauren
The story of the heart can never be unwritten. Macy Sorensen is settling into an ambitious if emotionally tepid routine: work hard as a new pediatrics resident, plan her wedding to an older, financially secure man, keep her head down and heart tucked away. But when she runs into Elliot Petropoulos—the first and only love of her life—the careful bubble she’s constructed begins to dissolve. Once upon a time, Elliot was Macy’s entire world—growing from her gangly bookish friend into the man who coaxed her heart open again after the loss of her mother...only to break it on the very night he declared his love for her. Told in alternating timelines between Then and Now, teenage Elliot and Macy grow from friends to much more—spending weekends and lazy summers together in a house outside of San Francisco devouring books, sharing favorite words, and talking through their growing pains and triumphs. As adults, they have become strangers to one another until their chance reunion. Although their memories are obscured by the agony of what happened that night so many years ago, Elliot will come to understand the truth behind Macy’s decade-long silence, and will have to overcome the past and himself to revive her faith in the possibility of an all-consuming love. Love, loss, friendship, and the betrayals of the past all collide in this first fiction novel from New York Times and #1 international bestselling author Christina Lauren
Can you keep a secret? I grew up sick. Let me clarify. I grew up believing that real love stories include a martyr or demand great sacrifice to be worthy. Because of that, I believed it, because I made myself believe it, and I bred the most masochistic of romantic hearts, which resulted in my illness. When I lived this story, my own twisted fairy tale, it was unbeknownst to me at the time because I was young and naïve. I gave into temptation and fed the beating beast, which grew thirstier with every slash, every strike, every blow. Triple Falls wasn’t at all what it seemed, nor were the men that swept me under their wing. But in order to keep them, I had to be in on their secrets. Secrets that cost us everything to keep. That’s the novelty of fiction versus reality. You can’t re-live your own love story, because by the time you’ve realized you’re living it, it’s over. At least that was the case for me and the men I trusted my foolish heart to. Looking back, I’m convinced I willed my story into existence due to my illness. And all were punished.
4. Cocky Bastard by Penelope Ward and Vi Keeland
He was someone who belonged in my wildest fantasies instead of a rest stop in the middle of Nebraska. A sexy, cocky, Australian named Chance was the last person I expected to run into on my cross-country drive. When my car broke down, we made a deal. Next thing I knew, we were traveling together, spending sexually-tense nights in hotels and taking unplanned detours. My ordinary road trip turned into the adventure of a lifetime. It was all fun and games until things got intense. I wanted him, but Chance wouldn’t make a move. I thought he wanted me too, but something was holding him back. I wasn’t supposed to fall for the cocky bastard, especially when I knew we’d be going our separate ways. All good things must come to an end, right? Except our ending was one I didn’t see coming.
Sharing a summer house with a hot-as-hell roommate should be a dream come true, right? Not when it’s Justin… the only person I’d ever loved… who now hates me. When my grandmother died and left me half of the house on Aquidneck Island, there was a catch: the other half would go to the boy she helped raise. The same boy who turned into the teenager whose heart I broke years ago. The same teenager who’s now a man with a hard body and a hardass personality to match. I hadn’t seen him in years, and now we’re living together because neither one of us is willing to give up the house. The worst part? He didn’t come alone. I’d soon realize there’s a thin line between love and hate. I could see through that smug smile. Beneath it all…the boy is still there. So is our connection. The problem is…now that I can’t have Justin, I’ve never wanted him more.