BookTini's Favorite Reads of 2018

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Every year, our membership nominates and votes on ten national selections to be read throughout the reading season. Each month has a specific genre, which ensures our membership reads a wide range of books, from those celebrating Black culture, to shining a light on locales outside of the United States, to sci-fi and thrillers, to books that left an impression way, way back in the day.

This means sometimes, we read outside of our comfort zones and discover an author we’d never considered before. Or, we get to share a consistent fav with our BookTini boos.

Each month, we ask members to let us know what they thought about the Book of the Month, and at the end of the year, we ask them to chime in, anonymously, with their favs. We also get insight on which drinks they enjoyed the most.

Without further ado, here are BookTini’s Favorite Things of 2018:

5. Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue

Behold the Dreamers followed The Jongas, from Cameroon, on their quest to become American citizens while working for a Lehman executive in NYC at the beginning of the Great Recession. This was our January Recent Release selection.

“Im not sure if it was the book, the fact that it was the first of the year or just because we were all together again, but Behold the Dreamers was a wonderful book. Truly the best read over 2018. There were so many Omg moments!!! My chapter had so much fun discussing this book.... with live dramatization ...full of laugh out loud moments. #Ilovemybookclub”

4. Final Girls by Riley Sager

Our September Mystery/Thriller selection had a sort of Final Destination theme: women who survived traumatic massacres are called the Final Girls. But what happens when, years later, they begin to mysteriously die, one by one?

“I'm not used to reading books of this genre so it took me out of my element. I don’t think I would have picked it up had it not been for BookTini. I really enjoyed it!”

45% of members also loved the Blackberry Whiskey Lemonade cocktail paired with this selection, making it the number one cocktail on our list for 2018.

3. We’re Going to Need More Wine by Gabrielle Union

We selected Gabrielle Union’s essay collection We’re Going to Need More Wine for our Inspirational/Women’s Empowerment month in October. Here, Union shares life growing up as one of very few Black girls in Pleasanton, CA; her dating and love life; the demise of her first marriage and the blossoming of her second; and life as a Black actress in Hollywood. This was also our selection for our local chapter retreats.

2. The Wedding Date by Jasmine Guillory

No surprise that Jasmine’s Guillory’s debut novel, The Wedding Date, landed near the top of our list. Our August Chick Lit/Romance selection featured Alexa Monroe, who meets hottie Drew Nichols in a hotel elevator while on the way to meet her sister. The elevator breaks down, the two get a little comfy, and suddenly Alexa is agreeing to pretend to be his girlfriend for the weekend to help him save face at his ex-girlfriend’s wedding. But,it doesn’t e nd there: feelings, sex, and a lot of uncertainty enter the picture during this cute modern romance.

“It was light, funny, and relatable.”

Members loved the Sparkling Summer Peach cocktail paired with this sizzling summer love story. It also came in as #2 on our Fav Cocktails of 2018 list.

1. Stay With Me by Ayobami Adebayo

Our March International Culture selection was voted the best read of our year. Stay With Me follows Akin and Yejide, a Nigerian couple in love, but struggling with fertility. Things take a turn for the worse when Akin’s family strongly suggests Akin take on a second wife to make sure their blood line continues. He eventually agrees, and ignores the promise he made with Yejide to leave the old custom of multiple wives behind. Lots of drama, suspense, and death ensue.

“The story was very entertaining with jaw dropping conclusions!”

“All of the drama made for a fun discussion.”

“I love international books. There was lots of drama in the beginning but it ended up being an interesting love story. It was also the last book that my mother read so it holds a special place in my heart.”

“Stay With Me was my favorite read because it had many unexpected turns, a real emotional storyline, and a shocking, but really well rounded ending. I thoroughly enjoyed reading the book and discussing it with my chapter.”

We paired this fav with the Pomegranate Moscow Mule cocktail, which came in as the third favorite cocktail of the year.

Did any of your favorite reads make our list?