2018 Reading List

*List updated with links to reviews for books read. Last updated 5/18/18

Christmas has past and the New Year is almost upon us. This week is a popular time for reflection, goal setting, and resolution making. Are you a New Year’s Resolution person? I’m not. However, one of my favorite bloggers has been talking a lot about her process of evaluating the past year and planning for the coming year. (The conversation about planning has been on Instagram story, not her blog.) Her process and enthusiasm for it inspired me to at least spend some time planning for 2018 in the hopes of being more productive in certain areas (like reading and, therefore, blogging). My goal? Read at least two books a month. How to achieve that goal? Make a book list of bloggable books to make it easier to pick. 

2018 Reading List
Photo by Kimberly Farmer on Unsplash

I may still make some edits to this list, but here’s what I’m currently hoping to read and blog in 2018. Use it to get ideas for yourself or join me book by book throughout the year!

Books from Indie Christian Books

A ton of my books this year are coming from the independent Christian author community. Over the past few years, there’s been a strong push among these authors to pay attention to quality, so I’m excited to share my thoughts on these books with you.

  • Octoberby J. Grace Pennington
    This is a contemporary novel by the author of the Firmament series. I got this book for Christmas, and I’ve heard good things about the author’s first stab at contemporary.
    Kindle $0.99, Paperback $9.99
  • War of Loyaltiesby Schuyler McConkey
    This debut novel is special to me because the author followed a similar process to the one I used for Counted Worthy. She wanted to really aim for a professional result without ending up in a financial hole, so she used Kickstarter fundraiser. Her book is the first time I’ve been able to pay forward the generosity I experienced from all my Kickstarter backers. Now, I gotta be honest. This is a behemoth of a book. Kind of intimidating! But I’m excited to give it a go.
    Kindle $4.99, Paperback $24.63
  • Water Princess, Fire Princeby Kendra E. Ardnek
    After running the Indie Christian Book sale in partnership with this girl for a couple of years now, I’m kind of embarrassed that I haven’t read any of her books yet. Hoping to fix that in 2018! (Also need an excuse to buy book 2 and enjoy its beautiful new cover art.)
    Kindle $2.99, Paperback $17.99
  • The Mountain of the Wolfby Elisabeth Grace Foley
    This author has a collection of fairy tale retellings that are completely historical and non-magical. It’s an intriguing idea. I already enjoyed her take on The Twelve Dancing Princesses, Lost Lake House, so I’m eager to read this retelling of Little Red Riding Hood.
    Kindle $2.99, Paperback $6.99
  • Your Kingdom Callingby Rachel Starr Thompson
    I absolutely adore this author’s story-telling style. Her writing was my first introduction to quality self-publishing and was instrumental in my decision to self-publish. I’ve been wanting to try her non-fiction for a while and this short book seems like a good way to break into it.
    Kindle $0.00
  • Bound, by Victoria Lynn
    Confession. I purchased this book mostly because I really enjoyed getting to know Victoria over the course of this year’s ICB sale. She says she’s all about the characters when she writes, so I’m looking forward to getting to know some cool fictional people in this book.
    Kindle $0.99, Paperback $11.99
  • Melody, by Penny Kearney
    This one isn’t published yet. The author and I both went through the One Year Adventure Novel curriculum and used to critique each other’s stories in high school. Melody is a fairytale retelling involving mermaids. You can find out more by following her on Instagram at @pennykearneybooks.
  • So To Honor Him, by Laura VanArendonk Baugh
    A historically accurate “retelling” of The Little Drummer Boy. Kind of bummed I didn’t have time to read this for Christmas 2017 but looking forward to getting in the Christmas spirit with this story next year.
    Kindle $2.99, Paperback $6.99
  • White Wolf, Ash Princessby Tammy Lash
    Based on our online interactions, this author has lots of energy and a genuine heart. I won a giveaway she hosted, and as a result, she’s going to be weaving some of me into one of the characters in the book she’s currently working on. :O
    Kindle $3.99, Paperback $14.99
  • The Girl Who Could Seeby Kara Swanson
    This book drew me in with its cover. The synopsis reminds me a little of Chuck Black’s War of the Realm series (which I need to re-read sometime). This one is kind of an outlier for me. I’m not sure what to expect. Hopefully the story is as beautiful as the cover.
    Kindle $2.99, Paperback $8.99
  • The Rise of Aredorby Claire M. Banschbach
    Personal connections are everything, folks. This is another ebook purchase inspired by the ICB sale.
    Kindle $3.99, Paperback $13.99

Traditionally Published Fiction

Yes, I still read this stuff sometimes. Let me know if there are any books releasing in 2018 that you’d like an opinion on before you purchase. I’ll try to add them to my reading plans.

  • Another Day, Another Daliby Sandra Orchard
    I purchased this book after reading and enjoying the first story in the series, A Fool and His Monet. It’s been sitting on my desk since April, so it’s time to actually read it!
    Kindle $5.99, Paperback $9.63
  • Mistbornby Brandon Sanderson
    This guy is so good at the craft of writing that I despair about my own writing every time I read one of his stories. My friend Emily from This Incandescent Life has been RAVING about this series lately, and it doesn’t take much to convince me about something from Sanderson.
  • Unashamedby Francine Rivers
    A few weeks ago, something mentioned in a message at church made me curious to find a novel about Rahab. Three or so options popped up, and this looked the most interesting to me.
    Kindle $8.53, Paperback $14.06
  • Not By Sightby Kate Breslin
    One of my Instagram followers recommended this book to me after I requested 2018 reading list suggestions on my Instagram story. It’s outside of my typical reading rut, but the synopsis totally intrigues me!
    Kindle $7.03, Paperback $7.40
  • Heartless, by Anne Elisabeth Stengl
    Late to the party on this one. My Goodreads friends have been recommending this series for a few years now. Finally going to give it try.
    Kindle $5.99, Paperback $12.80
  • Under a War-Torn Skyby L.M. Elliot
    I read this book in my early teens and, while I don’t remember the plot at all, the title has stuck with me as a story that I found impactful. Curious to go back and see if I can figure out why, out of the hundreds of books I read, this one stuck with me.
    Kindle $5.99, Paperback $4.79
  • Hero, Second Classby Mitchell Bonds
    Because how can you go wrong with books from Enclave? (For some reason I couldn’t find normal listing for this book on Amazon, even though book two is listed as usual.)
  • Once, We Were Brothersby Ronald H. Balson
    The premise of this book pulled me right in. Two brothers, once close, on opposite sides of the Holocaust. One of my favorite books from my early teens was Enemy Brothers, which had a similar premise. This book seems like a more grown-up, serious version of the concept.
    Kindle $9.99, Paperback $9.98
  • Traitor’s Masqueby Kenley Davidson
    A Goodreads friend recommended this to me because I love Robin McKinley’s Beauty. It’s a Cinderella retelling.
    Kindle $2.99, Paperback $12.99


A reading list wouldn’t be complete (for me) without a few non-fiction titles.

  • The Little Womanby Gladys Aylward
    This missionary who lived from 1902-1970 was one of my childhood heroes. Her autobiography has been on my shelf, waiting to be read, for years. Hopefully, 2018 is the year it’s been waiting for!
    Kindle $4.61, Paperback $7.99
  • Seeking Allah, Finding Jesusby Nabeel Qureshi
    One of my close friends recommended this in response to the Instagram story post I mentioned above. She said she listened to the entire audiobook in a day and a half! That’s a pretty good recommendation.
    Kindle $9.99, Paperback $11.22
  • This Changes Everythingby Jaquelle Crowe
    Jaquelle is a key figure in the Rebelution community and, as such, has become a dear friend. I wanted to read her book closer to its release date, but since that hasn’t happened, 2018 will have to do!
    Kindle $8.54, Hardcover $11.39
  • The Writer’s Guide to Psychologyby Carolyn Kaufman
    Work or fun? We might never know. This is another book recommended to me years ago that I just haven’t gotten too. Hopefully having a plan makes it happen.


Well, that does it! Twenty-four books for 2018.

Which of these books do you want to read? Have you already read any of them? What books are you most looking forward to reading this coming year? Are there any books that aren’t on my list but should be?


16 Replies to “2018 Reading List”

  1. AWESOME!! I’m so geeked to be on your list! I have a growing number of indie authors I want to explore, too. The talent out there in the indie community is mind-blowing!

  2. Excited to hear about some of those books!

    Mistborn is AMAZING, and absolutely rave-worthy. 🙂

    I tried to pick certain books to read for 2017 and…well, I read a few of them, but deviated from my list quite a bit. This year I think I’m going to take a bit of a different approach and pick categories rather than individual books as much (although I definitely have some individual books in mind!).

  3. You have a really nice reading list. 🙂 I’m looking for new books and authors so I can’t wait to hear what you think about these books. 🙂

    1. Melanie, I just finished “Once We We’re Brothers.” I won’t be reviewing it on the blog because it had too much adult content, but I put a review on Goodreads that is linked above. 😉

  4. This is a really great list! Also, Heartless is incredible! You’re in for a treat. My cousin introduced me to the series, otherwise I probably wouldn’t have heard of it. My personal favorite in that series is Dragonwitch, although I haven’t read the last book yet. It’s on my TBR list, though.
    This Changes Everything is also pretty good. I haven’t heard of a lot of these books in the list, so I’m looking forward to hearing your thoughts on them. 🙂

    1. That’s one of the fun things about reviewing indie books. Most people haven’t heard of them, so you get the opportunity to introduce people to books they might never have heard of.

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