Back at the start of the year, I created a 2019 Goals shelf on Goodreads. Within that shelf, I threw 69 (heh) books that I intended to read by the end of the year. And then I kept adding books. And adding them. As of this writing, 97 books are in that shelf, many of them I did actually read, yet many more were shoved aside for the shiny and new. Somehow, I was convinced I would still get to them.
You are a fool, Harry Potter, and you will lose… everything.
It’s turn-over-a-new-leaf time. I want to get back to those older books, so for Top Ten Tuesday, here are my top books I meant to read in 2019 that I will make a priority in 2020.
Title: The Sun Does Shine: How I Found Life and Freedom on Death Row
Author: Anthony Ray Hinton with Lara Love Hardin Genre: Autobiography, Memoir Version: ARC – ebook (Uncorrected Proof) Publisher: St. Martin’s Press Synopsis:GoodReads Notable Notables: POC POV, focuses on Social Justice and Reform Recommended Readers: EVERYONE Rating: ★★★★★
Thank you, NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press, for providing this ARC in exchange for an honest review.
It’s strange what you can get used to.
When I got the email promoting this book, I was blown away by the premise. In 1985, Anthony Ray Hinton, a Black man living in Alabama, was convicted of two counts of murder, one count of attempted murder, and armed robbery and sentenced to death by electrocution. The catch? He was totally innocent of the crimes they accused him of committing; the only evidence the prosecutors offered during the trial was his mother’s gun as the murder weapon, which hadn’t been fired once in over 25 years. This so-called “evidence” along with bogus ballistics reports and racism from an all-white jury, judge, and prosecution ensured that Ray would spend almost 30 years on death row before he was ruled innocent in 2015.
Ray’s innocence, however, doesn’t happen magically, if the time it took is any indication. What follows in The Sun Does Shine: How I Found Life and Freedom on Death Row is a long, uphill struggle for the truth to become known and justice to be served. Ray’s story is one of finding hope in hopelessness, love instead of hatred, and light instead of darkness–and he struggles at first. For three years, Ray doesn’t speak to anyone on death row, letting hate and rage fester inside of him as he loses faith in almost everything he’s ever believed in.
Until one day, the inmate in the cell next to him starts crying–a common occurrence on death row–but he sounds so anguished, so hopeless that Ray realizes something crucial about us humans. Hatred is a choice but so, too, is compassion.
Back in the saddle again! It’s crazy how fast these months seem to be going by, but I’m going to try not to think about that.
Instead, I’m going to share with you my most anticipated book releases coming in March. I even have books on here this time that aren’t strictly YA. I’m so proud of me.
Perhaps the book I’m most looking forward to out of all of them is Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi. The hype for it has been insane and apparently also well-deserved.
Zélie Adebola’s world was once full of magic and people who could control flames, harness waves, and even summon souls, but after the magic disappeared, a ruthless king began hunting down maji.
Alongside a rebel princess, Zélie must hide her growing powers and elude her enemies, including the crown prince. Steeped in West African culture and beliefs, Children of Blood and Bone sounds like it hits all the right targets for me. Plus, look at that cover. Absolutely stunning.