This Top 5 series started back in October 2018 and it has grown really big! This is a series of books that all have a common theme. I post the schedule for the next month the last week of the prior month. You can talk about books you want to read or books you have read and all prompts are open for interpretation! Feel free to get as creative as you want with the prompts.
Return from Hiatus & Personal Issues
I went on a bit of a hiatus for a few weeks and my Top 5 Saturday series went on hiatus with me. The hiatus was meant to just be for a few weeks, but then after some personal events it wound up becoming longer. Over a year and a half ago I cut contact with a really toxic person. This person has stalked and harassed me ever since then and for a while my blog became a target of that harassment. He was stalking me via my blog and when he realized I hadn’t posted in a while the messages increased and he even reached out to my family.
After some pretty aggressive messages I didn’t even want to post on my blog. I wound up going to get a temporary order of protection, which I should have done a lot sooner. I’m still going to court in order to get a permanent one. I knew that I wanted to bring back this series and explain to all my closest friends and followers who participate in this series what was going on and I finally got the courage to share all of this with you guys. This has been an incredibly traumatic and painful experience and getting an order of protection is not easy, but I am proud of myself for taking these steps. I am glad to be back blogging without the experience being tainted by nasty messages and threats.
August 28th, 2021 — People on the cover
September 4th, 2021 — Intimidating Books
September 11th, 2021 — Hyped Books
September 18th, 2021 — Fast Paced Books
September 25th, 2021 — Illustrated Covers
October 2nd, 2021 — Magical Books
People on the Cover
I actually don’t love covers with people on them, but there are so many great books out there that have people on the cover. While it isn’t my favorite cover design sometimes it looks really great. It’s great when a character on the cover helps you visualize the main character. There are a lot of books that I’m really excited for that have people on the cover and here are a few of them!
A young witch tries to unravel the mystery of who is framing her for dark magic in Georgia Bowers’ creepy YA debut fantasy, Mark of the Wicked.
Magic always leaves its mark.
All her life, Matilda has been told one thing about her magic: You use only when necessary. But Matilda isn’t interested in being a good witch. She wants revenge and popularity, and to live her life free of consequences, free of the scars that dark magic leaves on her face as a reminder of her misdeeds.
When a spell goes awry and the new boy at school catches her in the act, Matilda thinks her secret might be out. But far from being afraid, Oliver already knows about her magic – and he wants to learn more. As Oliver and Matilda grow closer, bizarre things begin to happen: Animals show up with their throats slashed and odd markings carved into their bodies, a young girl dies mysteriously, and everyone blames Matilda. But she isn’t responsible — at least, not that she can remember. As her magic begins to spin out of control, Matilda must decide for herself what makes a good witch, and discover the truth…before anyone else turns up dead.
I absolutely love a good dark fantasy and this one looks fantastic. I love magical and witchy books and I also love morally grey characters. This book checks so many boxes for me. I am super excited for this one and I can’t wait to finally read it!
Publication Date: September 28th, 2021
A lush gothic fantasy about monsters and magic, set on the banks of a cursed lake. Perfect for fans of Naomi Novik and Brigid Kemmerer.
There are monsters in the world.
When Violeta Graceling arrives at haunted Lakesedge estate, she expects to find a monster. She knows the terrifying rumors about Rowan Sylvanan, who drowned his entire family when he was a boy. But neither the estate nor the monster are what they seem.
There are monsters in the woods.
As Leta falls for Rowan, she discovers he is bound to the Lord Under, the sinister death god lurking in the black waters of the lake. A creature to whom Leta is inexplicably drawn…
There’s a monster in the shadows, and now it knows my name.
Now, to save Rowan—and herself—Leta must confront the darkness in her past, including unraveling the mystery of her connection to the Lord Under.
I picked this book up mainly because of the haunting cover, but the blurb also sounded fantastic. I love books with gothic vibes and promises a thrilling plot. This looks like the perfect book to start out the fall season. I’m on a blog tour for this one on October 3rd so watch out for that!
Publication Date: October 5th, 2021
From the New York Times bestselling author of Sorcery of Thorns and An Enchantment of Ravens comes a thrilling new YA fantasy about a teen girl with mythic abilities who must defend her world against restless spirits of the dead.
The dead of Loraille do not rest.
Artemisia is training to be a Gray Sister, a nun who cleanses the bodies of the deceased so that their souls can pass on; otherwise, they will rise as spirits with a ravenous hunger for the living. She would rather deal with the dead than the living, who trade whispers about her scarred hands and troubled past.
When her convent is attacked by possessed soldiers, Artemisia defends it by awakening an ancient spirit bound to a saint’s relic. It is a revenant, a malevolent being that threatens to possess her the moment she drops her guard. Wielding its extraordinary power almost consumes her—but death has come to Loraille, and only a vespertine, a priestess trained to wield a high relic, has any chance of stopping it. With all knowledge of vespertines lost to time, Artemisia turns to the last remaining expert for help: the revenant itself.
As she unravels a sinister mystery of saints, secrets, and dark magic, her bond with the revenant grows. And when a hidden evil begins to surface, she discovers that facing this enemy might require her to betray everything she has been taught to believe—if the revenant doesn’t betray her first.
Every single one of Margaret Rogerson’s books are on my TBR and I still haven’t read any of them. This is another dark fantasy that I can’t wait for. There are spirits of the dead and magical relics. I’ve heard that Margaret Rogerson’s writing is fantastic and I am excited to see for myself if I love it. I’m also on a blog tour for this one on September 28th, so keep your eyes peeled for that post!
Publication Date: November 2nd, 2021
Perfect for readers of The Hazel Wood and The Night Circus, this lush and layered story about magic and the captivating power of dreams is delivered with acclaimed author Rebecca Ross’s signature exquisite style.
A curse plagues the realm of Azenor—during each new moon, magic flows from the nearby mountain and brings nightmares to life. Only magicians, who serve as territory wardens, stand between people and their worst dreams.
Clementine Madigan is ready to take over as the warden of her small town, but when two magicians challenge her, she is unwittingly drawn into a century-old conflict. She seeks revenge, but as she secretly gets closer to Phelan, one of the handsome young magicians, secrets begin to rise. Clementine must unite with her rival to fight the realm’s curse, which seems to be haunting her every turn.
I actually just started reading this one and wow, I’m obsessed. I picked up a copy of this book because I loved Rebecca Ross’s previous book Sisters of Sword and Song. I didn’t even read the blurb before requesting, but this book feels like it was written for me. There are magicians fighting nightmares that come to life. As someone who struggles with severe PTSD and struggles with nightmares every night I’ve found this book incredible to read. I can’t wait to finish this one so I can share the rest of my thoughts!
Publication Date: January 11th, 2021
Meg Long’s Cold the Night, Fast the Wolves is a captivating debut about survival, found family, and the bond between a girl and a wolf that delivers a fresh twist on classic survival stories and frontier myths.
On a frozen wasteland of a planet, a girl is on the run with a wolf who is born to be a killer but bound to be her guide. As they fight to escape ice goblins, giant bears, and a ruthless leader intent on trapping them both, one question drives them relentlessly forward: where do you turn when there is nowhere to hide?
This book was definitely one that I requested because of the cover, but the blurb sounds incredible as well. I love books with survival themes so I’m super excited for this one! There is a dangerous sled race and I love books about bonds between humans and animals. I can’t wait for this one and I’m hoping I can get my hands on an ARC!
Check out other Book Blogger’s Top 5!
Tagged! Join us this week or in the future!
Stephanie @ Stephanie Leigh Reads
Stacy, Justin, and Nikole @ A Court of Coffee and Books
Yvonne @ Me and My Books
Kat @ The Lily Cafe
Do you like covers with people on them? Are any of these books on your TBR? What are some books with people on the cover that you’ve really liked? Make sure to comment below so we can chat about books with people on the cover!