It is 10pm on December 31st, 2018 and I arrive at church for the ‘Crossover into 2019’ service but I am stuck outside. I cannot go in.
This is because Angels and Demons has held me hostage.
I. Cannot. Leave.
So I stay outside to deal with it because this has been on my neck for two months and I need it to be over.
10 minutes later, it was over.
I had truly finished my fiftieth book. I had attained my goal!
When, in January, 2018, I wrote down the goal to read half of a hundred books, I didn’t truly believe I would. However, with a little less than two hours left for 2018 to elapse, I read my last word in my last book for the year. I was elated!
2018 was the year I ran out of paperbacks at a point and I had to turn to e-books, and I had a joyful moment when I purchased the physical copy of an e-book I had read- Americanah.
Good books were my fortune as I flipped through pages, but some did stand out. They took me to places unknown and captured my emotions in distinct ways.
In no specific order, these were my favourite paperback books I read in 2018 and a brief reason why you’d love them too;
I Laugh At These Skinny Girls by Tolu Akinyemi
Poetry is something I haven’t paid attention to and if we’re being candid, I don’t really understand, but after I saw a few quotes by Tolu Akinyemi (@poetolu) floating on social media, I thought finally try reading poetry.
I enjoyed this. It touches on the fraility of humans and the lives we lead. I laughed a lot while reading it and found it fascinating that an entire story could be told peacefully in one page.
What It Means When A Man Falls From The Sky by Leslie Nneka Arimah:
Accolade: Most Surprising Book.
I’d always thought of short stories, especially in a collection, as an unnecessary form of storytelling.
After reading this book, I realized my folly. Short stories create a world to immersed in only for a short while. They are great for people who are starting out to imbibe reading as a habit.
A full review of this book will be up soon. Yes, it was that good! I simply could not put it down and I finished it in less than 24 hours.
Some of the characters in this book have stayed with me and I cannot wait to reread this.
The Pressure Cooker by Nkiru Olumide- Ojo
You should already know how I feel about women and their chosen career paths.
Well, if you don’t, this book was a big help in throwing more (positive) light and direction concerning the different facets of being a woman in these ‘modern’ times. It does this without being stereotypical but practical and eye-opening.
Love Does Not Win Elections by Ayisha Osori
Accolade: Most ‘Disappointing’ and Enlightening Book.
Osori ran for political office in Nigeria and lost. This is her story.
This was enlightening because she gives the most open version of events concerning what it means to be in Nigerian politics than any I have ever come across. She even provides an outright budget of how much was expected to be spent.
I was disappointed because eventually, we all are right.
We live in a crooked, corrupt and selfish nation with leaders that have a deeper level of the aforementioned adjectives.
Daughters Who Walk This Path by Yejide Kilanko
Accolade: Most Relatable Book (and Character)
The story of Morayo was beautiful- not in that positive, happy-ending way. It was, in a way that you understood the character almost wholly. I could see her as my sister, my friend and myself.
I was drawn to Morayo. I still am. I could feel the depth of personality the characters had and I have yet to have a character remain with me the way Morayo has.
Please, just find this book. Buy it and read it.
How Intelligence Kills by Okechukwu Ofili
Accolade: Best Unexpected Read.
I think Ofili is a genius. Period.
This book was bought because of its title and the author’s name rang a bell. (Okada Books, anyone?)
As a Nigerian, you need to read this book. It would be a great aid to erasing (or modifying) the rubbish mentality that we subconsciously imbibe from the society that is our nation.
Things you didn’t know you should think about are brought to light and expanded beautifully.
Plus, the illustrations in this piece are holarious and spot- on!
Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
I know, I know. How am I just reading this book?
Well, I was being snob a snob telling myself, ‘It is probably not that good anyway.’
Ha. Please slap me in the face and call me a fart bottle because I was wrong.
Aunty CNA is still queen.
Ifemelu is who we all want to be – fearless, thoughtul, blessed.This coming-of-age story is filled with the endearing character of what it means to see, chase and live your dreams after a period of utter confusion and disappointment.
Working On A Dream by G. Fagbure
This piece is a ‘how to live your dream’ book without the ‘perspire to aspire’ factor.
It is so real and I felt like giving him a hug at several points.
Giving real- life, real-time tips to achieving your goals- in all life’s facets. It is a rational book which reminds you of the you you’ve forgotten and puts in line the greatness ahead of you.
I gave a few people this book to read and they thoroughly enjoyed too.
The Truth Sets Women Free by J. Lee Grady
Accolade: Best Unexpected Read.
Another ‘book snob’ fail. I have a review here.
Have you ever wondered what the real source of the oppression of the female gender is?
Read this book and find out. This book answered some very valid questions about who we are as Women in Christ and women in the world, as well as raising equally important questions for us.
Definitely a must- read for women and the men who love them.
Inferno by Dan Brown
Accolade: Best Cult Favourite.
Love, hate or at a loss about Dan Brown, he is a really smart, detailed writer.
I have read three books written by him, and each time, I am in awe of the depth they possess. He is evidently very creative and great at nail-biting suspense.
Robert Langdon is the ideal character because over the years (read as books), he has succeeded in making him real- he feels like an actual person because we know the minutia of who he is.
In case you are thinking of this book with regards to the movie, it literally does this piece no justice.
I had a good great reading year in 2018- the best I have ever had- and most of the books I read were quite good.
I did have one bad experience where I simply could not read up to 25% of a certain book. It was just horribly written.
Thank you so much for reading!
How was your 2018 reading year? Do you have bookish goals for 2019? What are your reading goals for 2019?