Welcome to the Fuzzable Book Club, a monthly book club where our writers talk about books they’ve read. This month’s piece is on top five favourite books. Here are Chloe’s picks:
Solitaire by Alice Oseman
In case you’re wondering, this is not a love story. My name is Tori Spring. I like to sleep and I like to blog. Last year – before all that stuff with Charlie and before I had to face the harsh realities of A-Levels and university applications and the fact that one day I really will have to start talking to people – I had friends. Things were very different, I guess, but that’s all over now. Now there’s Solitaire. And Michael Holden. I don’t know what Solitaire are trying to do, and I don’t care about Michael Holden. I really don’t.
So, Solitaire is a book I read for the first time in January 2019, almost exactly a year ago now and from the moment I finished it, I knew it was my favourite book of all time. I have read a lot of books and I have never related to a main character more than I have to Tori Spring. I suffer from major depressive disorder and the way Tori thinks and feels throughout the novel and the way she handles her mental health are so similar to mine that it actually scared me. I spent half the novel just sobbing into the book because I felt truly seen in this book.
The King’s Men by Nora Sakavic
Neil Josten is the newest addition to the Palmetto State University Exy team. He’s short, he’s fast, he’s got a ton of potential—and he’s the runaway son of the murderous crime lord known as The Butcher. Signing a contract with the PSU Foxes is the last thing a guy like Neil should do. The team is high profile and he doesn’t need sports crews broadcasting pictures of his face around the nation. His lies will hold up only so long under this kind of scrutiny and the truth will get him killed. But Neil’s not the only one with secrets on the team. One of Neil’s new teammates is a friend from his old life, and Neil can’t walk away from him a second time. Neil has survived the last eight years by running. Maybe he’s finally found someone and something worth fighting for.
As this is the third book in the series, I’ve added the description of the first book!
The King’s Men is my favourite book from my favourite series. All For The Game is a series that is so close to my heart as all of my friends will know because I talk about it all of the time. There are a lot of trigger warnings for the content so definitely look them up before you give the series a go but it means more to me than I’ll ever actually be able to put into words. These characters go through so much yet they don’t give up. They’re a family to each other no matter what and it just warms my heart and makes me cry. My favourite character in the series is Kevin Day because he just inspires me so much. He manages to overcome his biggest fear and his abusers. I adore him with my whole heart and feel so proud to have a tattoo dedicated to him on me forever.
I Wish You All The Best by Mason Deaver
When Ben De Backer comes out to their parents as nonbinary, they’re thrown out of their house and forced to move in with their estranged older sister, Hannah, and her husband, Thomas, whom Ben has never even met. Struggling with an anxiety disorder compounded by their parents’ rejection, they come out only to Hannah, Thomas, and their therapist and try to keep a low profile in a new school. But Ben’s attempts to survive the last half of senior year unnoticed are thwarted when Nathan Allan, a funny and charismatic student, decides to take Ben under his wing. As Ben and Nathan’s friendship grows, their feelings for each other begin to change, and what started as a disastrous turn of events looks like it might just be a chance to start a happier new life.
I Wish You All The Best is actually quite a hard book for me to talk about. It was my first experience of reading a book that had a nonbinary main character and was a really special experience for me because when I was reading it and was in Ben’s head with their thoughts and feelings, my brain was going; wait, this is me. This is exactly how I feel. I’m someone who has struggled with their identity for such a long time, I’ve never really known where I stand with my gender identity and my sexuality and reading this book helped me realise that I’m nonbinary so this was such an important book for me.
This novel has been written by a nonbinary author and that just made the whole narrative feel more authentic. The writing was absolutely stunning and it just helped me so, so much through something I’ve been fighting myself with for so long and I fully recommend picking this book up.
Little Do We Know by Tamara Ireland Stone
Lifelong best friends and next-door neighbors Hannah and Emory have never gone a single day without talking. But now its senior year and they haven’t spoken in three months. Not since the fight, where they each said things they couldn’t take back. They’re aching to break the silence, but those thirty-six steps between their bedroom windows feel more like thirty-six miles. Then one fateful night, Emory’s boyfriend, Luke, almost dies. And Hannah is the one who finds him and saves his life. As Luke tries to make sense of his near-death experience, he secretly turns to Hannah, who becomes his biggest confidante. In Luke, Hannah finds someone she can finally talk to about all the questions she’s grappling with. Emory just wants everything to go back to normal–the way it was before the accident. She has no idea why her relationship is spiraling out of control. But when the horrifying reason behind Hannah and Emory’s argument ultimately comes to light, all three of them will be forced work together to protect the one with the biggest secret of all.
Time for another beautiful book. Little Do We Know is a novel that I would truly recommend to anyone who wants a contemporary tale about friendship because this one is perfect to me. From the first page, I knew that this book was going to be a favourite for me. It’s just a beautiful story about friendship, faith, relationships and being kind to the people around you. I think it’s just an expertly crafted novel that deserves so much more hype than it gets. Seeing these two friends rekindling this friendship and Luke being such a genuine sweetheart throughout the novel. It’s tense, hard hitting and incredible. Go and read it!
The Past & Other Things That Should Stay Buried by Shaun David Hutchinson
Dino doesn’t mind spending time with the dead. His parents own a funeral home, and death is literally the family business. He’s just not used to them talking back. Until Dino’s ex-best friend July dies suddenly—and then comes back to life. Except not exactly. Somehow July is not quite alive, and not quite dead. As Dino and July attempt to figure out what’s happening, they must also confront why and how their friendship ended so badly, and what they have left to understand about themselves, each other, and all those grand mysteries of life.
Another book about healing friendships, you can tell the kind of contemporaries that I like to read. This is a book that really took me by surprise, I picked the audiobook up just randomly because I had heard good things about it and I’m so glad I did. Hutchinson is known for his hard hitting stories and this was definitely no different. It was just jaw dropping. The concept was so interesting and I loved the dynamic between the two of the main characters. It was such a heartbreaking story about how they’d fallen out, how they thought the other one hated them even though they didn’t and knowing that one of them is dead and even though they may fix this friendship, they can never be happy with each other. But, it’s so worth the read, the writing is beautiful, the characters are incredible and the messages this book spreads are so worthwhile. Overall, I love this book and love reading it so much.
So, there’s Chloe’s picks for this month’s book club. Make sure to go and look at our other writers picks too!
What are your favourite books? Let us know by tweeting us @Fuzzable.