Bookish Item | Top 18 Backlist Books of 2018

Last year we shared our favorite books of the year. And we separated it by backlist books and 2017 releases for both NA and YA books. This year we made different lists as well and today we’ll share our favorite backlist books we read. Because we both read over a 100 books (and Candyce even over 200!) we decided to do a top 18. This will be quite the long post so lets get into our top 18 backlist books of 2018!


If I don’t count rereads, I didn’t do a good job reading backlist books this year. So this won’t be a top 18. I have a top 13. If I included rereads it would’ve been a top 18, but I don’t think those should count. This is how I rate them at the moment, but that could be different tomorrow.

13. Stalking Jack the Ripper – Kerri Maniscalco
4 stars

I really enjoyed this one. Not as much as I hoped, but after reading the second and third book as well, this one is my favorite. The setting and the main character make it so interesting. It’s a darker books with a character who is way further than her time. I am really curious to see how the fourth and final book will end.

12. The Beauty of Darkness – Mary E. Pearson
3,5 stars

This was the last book in The Remnant Chronicles. It didn’t quite go as expected, but I did enjoy the final book in this trilogy. Once again another strong woman who is finding her way and her own strengths. This year a spin-off series was published (well the first book). Hopefully I can read that next year!

11. Brave- Jennifer L. Armentrout
4,5 stars

Brave is the final book in the Wicked trilogy. Once again, I don’t know why it took me so long to read this final book. The main character was stubborn and should’ve asked for more help at times, but I am happy with how this ended. Now I just really need a spin-off for Tink!

10. The Affiliate, The Bound & The Consort – K.A. Linde
4 stars

I decided not to give books from the same series desperate spots. Of course, it happens that I like one book more than the other, but the series earned this spot. After starting this series, I was upset with myself for not starting it sooner. There is a love story, magic, secrets from the past and dragons!

9. The Summer I Became a Nerd – Leah Rae Miller
4 stars

I actually just recently read this sweet contemporary. As a major nerd, I could so relate to the main character’s excitement for the final comic in her favorite series. This was hard for her though, because she didn’t want to be teased for being nerdy. She really learned a lot about herself and this book made my fangirl heart happy!

8. Scythe – Neal Shusterman
4,5 stars

Scythe was on my TBR for quite awhile. A friend of mine read it and said it was amazing and I needed to pick it up. She made me really curious and I have to say I’m glad I listened to her advice. A world where no one dies naturally anymore, but only when a Scythe decides it’s time. The second book is waiting for me, but I have heard so many people complain about a cliffhanger, that I decided to wait for the third book to be released.

7. Blue Lily, Lily Blue – Maggie Stiefvater
5 stars

This is the third book in The Raven Cycle and these books just keep getting better. I still have no clue how it’s going to end, but I am so afraid for the characters I have come to love. There are certain prophecies I really hope don’t come true. I am halfway through the final book and really need to finish it!

6. Nevermoor – Jessica Townsend
5 stars

I was introduced to this middle grade book in the TBR & Beyond group. Nevermoor is described as a book with Harry Potter vibes. That is true, but it’s so different. This world created by the author is so much fun, just like Morrigan. The second book just came out and am really excited for that one.

5. This Savage Song & Our Dark Duet – V.E. Schwab
5 stars

This duo logo was so amazing and unique! Once again, I was so mad at myself for waiting so long to read them. This Savage Song was also very refreshing. For once, it didn’t have a romance like most YA books do. The friendship in this story got the focus and I loved that.

4. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo – Taylor Jenkins Reid
5 stars

I was really shocked by how amazing this book was! Once I started reading I couldn’t stop. Evelyn was a movie star and basically wants to tell her life story to a journalist. This book could be a movie. So much happens with this woman and all her relationships. I really recommend this one!

3. Lord of Shadows – Cassandra Clare
4,5 stars

I actually only finished this book like a week ago! Lord of Shadows is one I have wanted to read for awhile, but I knew the ending was heartbreaking. It’s so good though. I really love this trilogy. I am currently reading Queen of Air and Darkness and just don’t want to put it down.

2. My Lady Jane – Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton & Jodi Meadows
5 stars

My Lady Jane is my first step into the historical fiction world and because of it I will be reading a lot more in this genre. I am still surprised this was written by three authors, because I really can’t tell. The twist they created around actually history is so much fun! Again another book I should’ve read a lot sooner!

1. The Black Witch – Laurie Forest
5 stars

This is definitely my favorite backlist book. Before seeing this book in a book group, I had never heard about it. I was told there was a lot of controversy,but I don’t understand that. The Black Witch is amazing. The author created an amazing and really realistic world. The main character grows and learns so much. I really need to read the sequel soon.


I decided not to take rereads into account because those are all 5 star reads for me to be honest. This year I’ve reread all Harry Potter books, the whole Throne of Glass series and the first two To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before books, so all favorites 😉 I haven’t rated that many books 5 stars as I’m trying to be a little more critical but these are all books I did really enjoy! This list is compiled from #18 to #1 but if you ask me tomorrow I might change it up again haha.

18 Crazy Rich Asians – Kevin Kwan
4 stars

I had never thought this book would make it on my favorite list but here we are! This read like a telenovela or something similar and it was wonderful. I had so much fun and flew through this book. Now I just need to watch the movie!

17 The Dazzling Heights – Katharine McGee
4 stars

I started reading this one right as it came out, but had to put it down in favor of another new release. This year I finally picked it back up as an audiobook and it was so much fun. I really enjoy this world and while it wasn’t as good as the first book, it was still great. Just one more book to go with these wonderfully flawed characters.

16 Young Elites – Marie Lu
4 stars

This was really a surprise! I listened to the audiobook and I’m still not completely sure why I picked this one up. Possibly because it fit a category for a readathon haha. Anyways, I was pleasantly surprised but the uniqueness of this YA dystopian. I will definitely pick up the rest of the series and I can honestly say I don’t know where this story is going.

15 Dragonfly in Amber – Diana Gabaldon
4 stars

I loved Outlander but these books are HUGE and reading them takes forever. These are not books I read easily so I picked it up and put it down several times. Once again audiobooks were the solution, Storytel has divided the book by all the parts so I alternated between listening and reading and it went by so much faster. I think I’ll do the same for the next books.

14 Daughter of the Pirate King – Tricia Levenseller
4 stars

I got this one in a past Owlcrate box but hadn’t picked it up until I saw a pre order campaign for the sequel. Finally a pre order incentive that was open internationally, couldn’t pass that up 😉 So I preordered Daughter of the Siren Queen and finally read Daughter of the Pirate King. I flew through this one but have yet to pick up the conclusion to this duology.

13 Long Way to a Small Angry Planet – Becky Chambers
4 stars

The world, or better the universe in this novel is so well developed it’s insane! It is quite complex and daunting so it took me awhile to finish the story but I did appreciate all the development a lot. The characters are amazing and the relationships, wether between friends or lovers are wonderful. I have the second volume and want to read it soon.

12 Windwitch – Susan Dennard
4,5 stars

It took me a while but I jumped on the Witchland bandwagon and I’m happy I did. What a wonderful world Susan has created! I’m looking forward to the third volume early next year and hope to see more amazing friendships and jawdropping twists.

11 Lady Midnight & Lord of Shadows – Cassandra Clare
4 stars & 4,5 stars

I finally did it! Lady Midnight had been waiting for quite a while and I had already abandoned the story once. But leading up to the publication of Queen of Air and Darkness with the help of a buddyread with Candyce and Melissa I did it. And I’m so happy it did! As I’m typing this I just finished QoAaD and I’m sad this story it over. These books took over my life for the last week and a half and this list would not be complete without them. Keep the Shadowhunter books coming Cassie!

10 Starfire vol. 1 – Amanda Conner
5 stars

I did not expect to like this one as much as I did, I picked it up on a bit of a whim to be honest. But it was such an enjoyable superhero story, and not one of the more know ones. I definitely plan on picking up more volumes in this series.

9 Anya’s Ghost – Vera Brosgol
5 stars

This was a wonderful graphic novel and I’m so happy I picked it up. It is marketed as MG and I don’t completely agree with that because of some of the content but I loved the focus on friendships.

8 Renegades – Marissa Meyer
5 stars

I loved Marissa Meyer’s Lunar Chronicles and when I was meeting her this year, I knew I had to read Renegades. Superheroes are a favorite subgenre so to say of mine and not knowing who are the good and who are the bad guys makes it even better. Excited to pick up the sequel!

7 Fables vol. 1 – Bill Willingham
5 stars

I picked this comic up because it reminded me of a favorite tv show of mine: Once Upon a Time. And it was even more wonderful than I expected it to be. I own the second volume and have so many more to get to haha. There are some spinoff series as well so I can stay in this universe for quite awhile.

6 Follow Me Back – A.V. Geiger
5 stars

Candyce loved this one so obviously I put it on my bday wishlist. And when I got it, I started reading it the moment I got home and didn’t put it down until I finished it. This was a wonderful YA thriller!

5 Locke & Key vol. 1 & 2 – Joe Hill & Gabriel Rodríquez
5 stars

This has quickly become one of my favorite graphic novel series and I rated both volumes 5 stars. Such enjoyable, dark and gritty reads. I loved the story, loved the art work and hate how expensive they are haha. Hopefully I’ll be able to buy the rest soon 😉

4 The Call – Peadar Ó Guilín
5 stars

I picked this one up because I came across it on my audiobook subscription service and remembered I had wanted to read it. The reviews were quite mixed I think, but this one was right up my alley. Such a twisted world with wonderful characters. Highly recommend!

3 Gemina – Jay Kristoff & Amie Kaufman
5 stars

I can’t believe it took me this long to finally read these books but it was great not having to wait that long for the finale. This is my favorite book out of the three and I adored all the characters. These books are brutal and I’m all here for it.

2 Every Heart a Doorway – Seanan McGuire
5 stars

This one had been on my want to read list for quite awhile but this year I came across quite some people who adored this book. And so I finally picked it up (and the sequels as well!) and I’m so happy I did. The only thing I hate is that I now have to wait until the next books are published haha.

1 My Lady Jane – Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton & Jodi Meadows
5 stars

This was on of the first books I read this year and I absolutely loved it! Candyce and I buddyread this one and we were both sad that we didn’t read it sooner. But I’m so happy we finally did pick it up as it was perfection!

These are our favorite backlist books of the year! Next week we’ll share our favorite 2018 releases. Have you read (and loved) any of our favorites? Let us know in the comments!


2 thoughts on “Bookish Item | Top 18 Backlist Books of 2018

    1. I (Isabelle) was pretty disappointed by The Beauty of Darkness as well! Such a shame, but the new book in this world seems pretty good so I have to give that one a chance.
      DotPK was so much fun, can’t wait to pick up the sequel! And while it’s been years since I’ve read The Summer I Became a Nerd, I did really love that one <3

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