Don’t we all have those specific books that we recommend to everyone no matter what? The best part about working in a book store is obviously that I get to tell all our customers about my favorite books! I get an immense sense of gratification whenever someone walks out the store with one of my recommendations. But which books do I always recommend? Well, in this post you’ll learn all about them!
First of all I should tell y’all that the only books I recommend are usually fantasy and science fiction, because that’s what I overwhelmingly read the most of. The age group doesn’t matter, but as soon as someone asks me about my favorite romance I completely draw a blank. Should I branch out to other genres? Probably, but so far I haven’t. *shrugs*
Anyway, this post will be divided up in three parts: a middle grade part, a young adult part, and an adult part. I have favorites in each age group, and I love encouraging people and kids to read whatever they feel comfortable with!:)
Middel Grade Books I recommend
- Cassidy Blake series – Victoria Schwab
These books (City of Ghosts and Tunnel of Bones) are excellent for any mid-grader that is transitioning into more teenage stuff. The stories are spooky, but not overly scary and therefore completely appropriate for any young reader that likes adventures, troublesome ghosts, and a dash of history.
- The Land of Stories – Chris Colfer
Again, these books are great for young readers that love adventure and fantasy! They’re a little bit more hefty than Schwab’s middle grade books, which also makes them excellent for kids who already devour books almost daily. Every fairy tale character you know makes an appearance in this series, and they all shape the story.
- York – Laura Ruby
I especially love this book because it takes place in an alternative New York. In this timeline, New York has been shaped by the Morningstarr twins; two visionary souls that dreamed of skyscrapers and machinery. Basically, it’s a steampunk New York. It also has great representation. I like recommending this book to kids who like reading, but are not too much into the fantastical.
Young Adult Recommendations
- This Savage Song – Victoria Schwab
Yes, Schwab again. But I always love recommending her books because she writes great books for every age group and interest! This Savage Song and Our Dark Duet are great books for readers who want something that is not too long, but also gripping and unique. This duology ticks all those boxes.
- Strange the Dreamer – Laini Taylor
Who doesn’t like a fantasy with fantastic world building, great characters, and whimsical writing? Strange the Dreamer and Muse of Nightmares both made me sob. It was beautiful and heartbreaking at the same time. I recommend these books to readers who like fantasy, but aren’t bothered by a somewhat slower pace.
- All the Grishaverse books – Leigh Bardugo
I love Leigh Bardugo. Let it be known. Her books are always easy to recommend, because again her longest series (for now) is a trilogy consisting of books that barely make 400 pages. I always start with recommending the Shadow and Bone trilogy before talking about Six of Crows, even though I think Six of Crows is fare superior, oops.
Adult Books I Recommend
- A Darker Shade of Magic – Victoria Schwab
I did say earlier on that I love recommending Schwab to all ages, so… Here she is again! A Darker Shade of Magic is usually perfect for readers who love a good fantasy with a deep plot and tons of magic.
- Nevernight – Jay Kristoff
I aways pitch this book by asking if the customer likes violence, a badass female main character, and a plot mostly driven by revenge. Most of the time the answer is yes, because a lot of people shopping in the adult fantasy section are looking for exactly that. As a side note, recommending adult fantasy and sci-fi books is way easier than recommending teen books.
- Mistborn – Brandon Sanderson
If there is ever a day that I don’t recommend this series, it’s because I’ve been killed and replaced by an AI clone. I’ve had a very high success rate selling this book to customers. I think it has partly to do with the fact that I almost flail around enthusiastically while talking about it, and they just want me to shut up already. Either way, I’m satisfied.
- Red Rising
Where Mistborn makes me flail around like a suspiciously happy fish out of the water, Red Rising’s selling point for me is telling the customers that book two absolutely shattered my heart. Emotional distress aside, this series also makes you think. It’s not black and white, and at some point you forget who you’re rooting for. A lot of customers love a good sci-fi that questions all ethics.
That’s it for now, folks! I have a ton more recommendations for y’all. Especially in the adult section. But for the sake of keeping this readable, this is all for today. Maybe I’ll do a part 2 soon!
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