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Monday I shared Six 2019 Books That Deserved the Hype, plus Six That Didn’t, and today I’ll be turning to 2019 books that just didn’t seem to get the hype they deserved or as I like to think of them, “Underrated Gems.” Underrated Books We Think Deserve More Buzz is today’s challenge for #AMonthofFaves from Girlxoxo, and Traveling with T, the hosts for this annual month-long blog event. Everyone has those special books they just want to press into the hands of others and I’m hoping at least one of the six I share today will make it onto your “to be read” list!
Six 2019 Underrated Gems
- The End of Loneliness by Benedict Wells – Calling something “nice” doesn’t always feel like much of a compliment, but in the best possible sense this was a nice book. It covered family, love, loneliness, growth, change and redemption all in a beautifully told story of one man’s life. Widely read in Europe, I feel like it just didn’t get much attention here. (my review)
- The Other Americans by Laila Lalami – I loved everything about this story of a daughter’s journey through grief after the sudden death of her father. Told from many different perspectives, Lalami’s writing was absolutely gorgeous, examining social and cultural issues in understated ways, while uncovering the many layers grief. (my review)
- If, Then by Kate Hope Day – This strange little debut about residents of a small college town who begin to experience glimpses of other realities, might not be for everyone, but I believe many more would enjoy it. I found If, Then just different enough to keep me constantly engaged, but never so out-there I was rolling my eyes. Day’s characters were well thought out and completely likable. (my review)
- Juliet the Maniac by Juliet Escoria – I loved this brave, heartbreaking story of young Juliet’s rapid fall into mental illness and her journey toward finding a way to carry on without completely losing herself. Parts of Juliet the Manic may be difficult for some to read, but the story is truly wonderful. Especially if you’re a fan of memoirs or coming-of-age stories, this is a book you need to read! (my review)
- A Prayer for Travelers by Ruchika Tomar – This underrated gem is a beautifully told story of one young woman’s life of loneliness, loss, and longing for something more set against the jarringly desolate backdrop of the Nevada desert. Both a stunning coming-of-age story and an ode to female friendship, it’s definitely one of the best debuts I read this year. (my review)
- Very Nice by Marcy Dermansky – You know that feeling when you’re not really expecting much from a book and then it blows you away? That’s what I got from this fun, quirky story about a mother and daughter with a thing for the same man, a host of wealthy people behaving badly, and a poodle everyone adores. I still think the book needs to be more widely read AND adapted for the screen. (my review)
Do you have a favorite underrated gem from 2019?
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