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30 Novels You Need To Read This Year

30 Novels You Need To Read This Year

The importance of reading can never be overemphasized. For a long time, books have been identified to be a major source of knowledge. This can explain why we are encouraged to keep their minds fresh by reading. Reading helps us nurture our minds and grow our vocabulary. Besides that, novels help us develop our creative thinking capability which is very useful in our daily life.

Below are 30 must-read novels from 2015.

  1. Return to Me” by Kelly Moran

1.Return to me

    The romance story features once-spoiled rich kid Cole Covington who could get anything he wanted. After a nasty break up with his young and trusting lover Mia Galdon, Cole joined the military to bury his guilt. The story takes you through the emotional journey of the two lovebirds when Cole returns home.

    1. “Finders Keepers” by Stephen King

    2.Finders Keepers

      As a horror thriller trilogy, this King novel’s main objective is to touch on the notion of a reader who is obsessed with an author. The spectacular heart-pounding and intriguing novel observes the obsession going too far. It is all about the power of storytelling.

      1. “Liars” by Paula Stokes

      3. Liars

        The story features Max Cantrell and his two friends Preston and Parvati. The novel takes you through the life of Max, a pathological liar, and details how he got started with his company Liars, Inc.

        1. “Queen of Shadows” by Sarah J. Maas

        4. Queen of shadows

          The fourth volume of Sarah J. Maas’s Throne of Glass series features Celaena Sardothien, a heroine who is forced to return to her kingdom to seek vengeance and confront the shadows of the past after everyone she loved was taken away from her.

          1. ”The Sword of Summer” by Rick Riordan

          5. The Sword of Summer

            The Sword of Summer is a young adult fantasy novel about a troubled child named Magnus Chase. It takes you through the unfortunate events that occurred in Chase’s life, including the mysterious death of his mother, that left him on the streets to survive by his wits.

            1. “The Girl at Midnight” by Melissa Grey

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            6. The girl at midnight

              The Girl at Midnight is a fantasy story about a modern girl known as Echo who is caught up in an ancient war. She belongs to the Avicen, an ancient race of people with feathers for hair and magic. As the Avicen race remains hidden from the human race, Echo is the only active member of the race who survives as a pickpocket.

              1. “My Heart and Other Black Holes” by Jasmine Warga

              7. My heart and other black holes

                This young adult novel revolves around the life of Aysel who apparently is obsessed about plotting her own death. She considers her life worthless and commences on a mission to turn her potential energy into nothingness. In the novel, her suicidal partner Roman is haunted by a family tragedy.

                1. “Prudence” by Gail Carriger

                8. Prudence

                  Prudence is the daughter of Alexia Tarabotti who is given an unexpected dirigible. With this she does what any other female would do and names the dirigible the Spotted Custard, then heads to India where not everything goes as planned.

                  1. “The Stars Never Rise” by Rachel Vincent

                  9. The stars never rise

                    The Stars Never Rise is a young adult fantasy novel that features Nina Kane, a 16-year-old who is more worried about her ways of survival than her immortality. Problem is, her town has been occupied by soul-consuming demons and souls are in short supply.

                    1. “The Shadow Cabinet” by Maureen Johnson

                    10. The shadow cabinet

                      Reeling from a series of tragic and sudden events in her life, Rory is trying to understand whether she did enough to save members of the squad. To add to this, her friend Charlotte is also suspected to be in danger after being kidnapped by Jane and her nefarious organization.

                      1. “The Rules” by Nancy Holder

                      11. The Rules

                        This novel will put you on the edge of your seat with its style of writing. Narration that alternates between unreliable narrators gives the book its dark thriller nature. Throughout the book no one is actually safe.

                        1. The Unfortunate Importance of Beauty” by Amanda Filipacchi

                        12. The unfortunate importance of beauty

                          The novel takes you through the life struggles of a group of artistic friends in New York who are all about beauty. Amanda Filipacchi tries to blend a mixture of both magic and comedy to bring out this modern love story.

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                          1. A History of Loneliness” by John Boyne

                          13. A history of Loneliness

                            The novel features Odran Yates who is forced to join the life of priesthood courtesy of a family tragedy. Full of hope and ambition, Odran joins Clonliffe Seminary only to be caught in revelations that shatter the Irish people’s faith 40 years later.

                            1. Funny Girl” by Nick Hornby

                            14. Funny girl

                              The highly anticipated Funny Girl adopts a 1960s London setting and seeks to explore the adventures of Sophie Straw as she attempts to navigate her transformation into a television starlet. Hornby’s humorous writing will get you hooked.

                              1. “The Country of Ice Cream Star” by Sandra Newman

                              15. The country of ice cream star

                                In the aftermath of a plague, 15-year-old Ice Cream goes on a dangerous and surprising journey to save her world.

                                1. God Help the Child” by Toni Morrison

                                16. God help the child

                                  Toni Morrison takes you through the searing tale of how childhood trauma can either shape or misshape the life of an adult. The novel features bold, confident, and very successful Bride as its main character.

                                  1. The Harder They Come” by T.C. Boyle

                                  17. The harder they come

                                    This powerful, gripping novel seeks to take its readers through the roots of violence and so-called anti-authoritarianism. The novel explores the volatile connection found between an aging ex-marine and a Vietnam veteran.

                                    1. The Poser” by Jacob Rubin

                                    18. The poser

                                      Jacob Rubin creates a rather hilarious and dazzling debut novel that features Giovanni Bernini, an impressionist master about to loose his true self.

                                      1. All the Rage” by Courtney Summers

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                                      19. All the rage

                                        The novel revolves around Romy Grey and Kellan Turner — a sheriff’s son who apparently is not the golden boy that everyone assumes to be. Romy knows the truth about Turner and when she reveals it, no one wants to trust her which in turn costs hers dearly.

                                        1. The Almost King” by Lucy Saxon

                                        rsz_120_the_almost_king

                                          The Almost King revolves around Aleks, the youngest of the four brothers who is looking for more than just life at his father’s shop. He runs away when he hears his parents complaining about money so that he can relieve them of his baggage.

                                          1. Apple and Rain” by Sarah Crossan

                                          21. Apple and rain

                                            The novel is all about Apple who after being abandoned for 11 years, meets her mother. Although Apple feels whole again once she sees her mother, there remains one burning question that has been taunting Apple for years, ”Why did she abandon her?”

                                            1. Blood Will Tell” by April Henry

                                            22. Blood will tell

                                              In the novel, April Henry tries to tell a story about a teen Nick Walker who, after a woman’s body is retrieved in Portland Park, turns from being a member of the Portland’s Search and Rescue team to a prime suspect.

                                              1. A Book of Spirits and Thieves” by Morgan Rhodes

                                              23. A book of spirits and thieves

                                                The novel which has been dubbed as a high fantasy and exhilarating book takes the readers through the territories of the modern day Toronto and then shifts them back to the ancient kingdoms of Mytica and Rhodes.

                                                1. Burning Kingdoms” by Lauren DeStefano

                                                24. Burning kingdoms

                                                  Burning Kingdom is the second sequel to “The Internment Chronicles” that sees danger descending in the kingdom. Morgan, the main character, escapes Internment and her fellow fugitives land on the ground only to learn about the world beneath the floating island home.

                                                  1. The Wondrous and the Wicked” by Page Morgan

                                                  25. The Wondrous and the wicked

                                                    “The Wondrous and the Wicked,” the final novel of this series, features the Waverly sisters who need to save themselves before everything is lost.

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                                                    1. Winter” by Marissa Meyer

                                                    26. Winter

                                                      As the finale to the “Lunar Chronicles”, the “Winter” features Princes Winter — a glamorous 13-year-old whose beauty is expected to be greater than that of her stepmother’s. Out of jealously, her stepmom disfigures Winter.

                                                      1. The Wicked Will Rise” by Danielle Paige

                                                      27. The wicked will rise

                                                        Amy Gumm must do everything within her means to kill Dorothy and free Oz. Amy is given a mission which includes removing the Tin Man’s heart, taking the Lion’s courage, stealing the Scarecrow and killing Dorothy.

                                                        1. Until the Beginning” by Amy Plum

                                                        28. Until the beginning

                                                          ”Until the Beginning”’s Juneau who finds answers in this exhilarating sequel.

                                                          1. The Uninvited” by Cat Winters

                                                          29. The uninvited

                                                            The masterfully novel revolves around the story of love, loss, and giving others second chances. The book adapts an ancient setting that takes you back to the time of the great Influenza of 1918.

                                                            1. Shutter” by Courtney Alameda

                                                            30. Shutter

                                                              The book features a girl referred to as Micheline Helsing who has the ability of seeing the auras of the undead in a prismatic spectrum. She is the only remaining descendant of the Van Helsing lineage.

                                                              Featured photo credit: Browse more: book, brunette, girl, home, learning, motivation, reading, schoolTest Drive image Take a look how this image can be used! Girl Reading a Book at Home via picjumbo.com

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                                                              Published on November 14, 2018

                                                              Why You Suffer from Constant Fatigue and How to Deal with It

                                                              Why You Suffer from Constant Fatigue and How to Deal with It

                                                              With our busy, always on lives, it seems that more and more of us are facing constant tiredness and fatigue on a regular basis.

                                                              For many people, they just take this in their stride as part of modern life, but for others the impact can be crippling and can have a serious effect on their sense of wellbeing, health and productivity.

                                                              In this article, I’ll share some of the most common causes of constant tiredness and fatigue and give you some guidance and action steps you can take to overcome some of the symptoms of fatigue.

                                                              Why Am I Feeling Fatigued?

                                                              Fatigue is extreme tiredness resulting from mental or physical exertion or illness.  It is a reduction in the efficiency of a muscle or organ after prolonged activity.[1]

                                                              It can affect anyone, and most adults will experience fatigue at some point in their life. 

                                                              For many people, fatigue is caused by a combination of lifestyle, social, psychological and general wellbeing issues rather than an underlying medical condition.

                                                              Although fatigue is sometimes described as tiredness, it is different to just feeling tired or sleepy. Everyone feels tired at some point, but this is usually resolved with a nap or a few nights of good sleep. Someone who is sleepy may also feel temporarily refreshed after exercising. If you are getting enough sleep, good nutrition and exercising regularly but still find it hard to perform, concentrate or be motivated at your normal levels, you may be experiencing a level of fatigue that needs further investigation. 

                                                              Symptoms of Fatigue

                                                              Fatigue can cause a vast range of physical, mental and emotional symptoms including:

                                                              • chronic tiredness, exhaustion or sleepiness
                                                              • mental blocks
                                                              • lack of motivation
                                                              • headache
                                                              • dizziness
                                                              • muscle weakness
                                                              • slowed reflexes and responses
                                                              • impaired decision-making and judgement
                                                              • moodiness, such as irritability
                                                              • impaired hand-to-eye coordination
                                                              • reduced immune system function
                                                              • blurry vision
                                                              • short-term memory problems
                                                              • poor concentration
                                                              • reduced ability to pay attention to the situation at hand

                                                              Causes of Fatigue

                                                              The wide range of causes that can trigger fatigue include:

                                                              • Medical causes: Constant exhaustion, tiredness and fatigue may be a sign of an underlying illness, such as a thyroid disorder, heart disease, anemia or diabetes.
                                                              • Lifestyle-related causes: Being overweight and a lack of regular exercise can lead to feelings of fatigue.  Lack of sleep and overcommitting can also create feelings of excessive tiredness and fatigue.
                                                              • Workplace-related causes: Workplace and financial stress in a variety of forms can lead to feelings of fatigue.
                                                              • Emotional concerns and stress: Fatigue is a common symptom of mental health problems, such as depression and grief, and may be accompanied by other signs and symptoms, including irritability and lack of motivation.

                                                              Fatigue can also be caused by a number of factors working in combination.

                                                              Medical Causes of Fatigue

                                                              If you have made lifestyle changes to increase your energy and still feel exhausted and fatigued, it may be time to seek guidance from your doctor.

                                                              Here are a few examples of illnesses that can cause ongoing fatigue. Seek medical advice if you suspect you have a health problem:

                                                              Anemia

                                                              Anemia is a condition in which you don’t have enough healthy red blood cells to carry adequate oxygen to the body’s tissues. It is a common cause of fatigue in women.

                                                              Having anemia may make you feel tired and weak.

                                                              There are many forms of anemia, each with its own cause. Anemia can be temporary or long term, and it can range from mild to severe.[2]

                                                              Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)

                                                              Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is a condition that can cause persistent, unexplained fatigue that interferes with daily activities for more than six months.

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                                                              This is a chronic condition with no one-size-fits-all treatment, but lifestyle changes can often help ease some symptoms of fatigue.[3]

                                                              Diabetes

                                                              Diabetes can cause fatigue with either high or low blood sugars. When your sugars are high, they remain in the bloodstream instead of being used for energy, which makes you feel fatigued. Low blood sugar (glucose) means you may not have enough fuel for energy, also causing fatigue.[4]

                                                              Sleep Apnea

                                                              Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder where sufferers briefly stop breathing for short periods during sleep. Most people are not aware this is happening, but it can cause loud snoring, and daytime fatigue.

                                                              Being overweight, smoking, and drinking alcohol can all worsen the symptoms of sleep apnea.[5]

                                                              Thyroid disease

                                                              An underactive thyroid gland means you have too little thyroid hormone (thyroxine) in your body. This makes you feel tired and you could also put on weight and have aching muscles and dry skin.[6]

                                                              Common lifestyle factors that can cause fatigue include:

                                                              • Lack of sleep
                                                              • Too much sleep 
                                                              • Alcohol and drugs 
                                                              • Sleep disturbances 
                                                              • Lack of regular exercise and sedentary behaviour 
                                                              • Poor diet 

                                                              Common workplace issues that can cause fatigue include:

                                                              • Shift work: Our body is designed to sleep during the night. A shift worker may confuse their circadian clock by working when their body is programmed to be asleep.
                                                              • Poor workplace practices: This may include long work hours, hard physical labour, irregular working hours (such as rotating shifts), a stressful work environment, boredom or working alone. 
                                                              • Workplace stress – This can be caused by a wide range of factors including job dissatisfaction, heavy workload, conflicts with bosses or colleagues, bullying, or threats to job security.
                                                              • Burnout: This could be striving too hard on one area of your life while neglecting others, which leads to a life that feels out of balance.

                                                              Psychological Causes of Fatigue

                                                              Psychological factors are present in many cases of extreme tiredness and fatigue.  These may include:

                                                              • Depression: Depression is characterised by severe and prolonged feelings of sadness, dejection and hopelessness. People who are depressed commonly experience chronic fatigue.
                                                              • Anxiety and stress: Someone who is constantly anxious or stressed keeps their body in overdrive. The constant flooding of adrenaline exhausts the body, and fatigue sets in.
                                                              • Grief: Losing a loved one causes a wide range of emotions including shock, guilt, depression, despair and loneliness.

                                                              How to Tackle Constant Fatigue

                                                              Here are 12 ways you can start tackling the causes of fatigue and start feeling more energetic.

                                                              1. Tell The Truth

                                                              Some people can numb themselves to the fact that they are overtired or fatigued all the time. In the long run, this won’t help you.

                                                              To give you the best chance to overcome or eliminate fatigue, you must diagnose and tell the truth about the things that are draining your energy, making you tired or causing constant fatigue.

                                                              Once you’re honest with yourself about the activities you’re doing in your life that you find irritating, energy-draining, and make you tired on a regular basis you can make a commitment to stop doing them.

                                                              The help that you need to overcome fatigue is available to you, but not until you tell the truth about it. The first person you have to sell on getting rid of the causes of fatigue is yourself.

                                                              One starting point is to diagnose the symptoms. When you start feeling stressed, overtired or just not operating at your normal energy levels make a note of:

                                                              • How you feel
                                                              • What time of day it is
                                                              • What may have contributed to your fatigue
                                                              • How your mind and body reacts

                                                              This analysis may help you identify, understand and then eliminate very specific causes.

                                                              2. Reduce Your Commitments

                                                              When we have too many things on our plate personally and professionally, we can feel overstretched, causing physical and mental fatigue.

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                                                              If you have committed to things you really don’t want to do, this causes irritability and low emotional engagement. Stack these up throughout your day and week, then your stress levels will rise.

                                                              When these commitments have deadlines associated with them, you may be trying to cram in far too much in a short period of time.  This creates more stress and can affect your decision making ability.

                                                              Start being realistic about how much you can get done. Either reduce the commitments you have or give yourself more time to complete them in.

                                                              3. Get Clear On Your Priorities

                                                              If working on your list of to-do’s or goals becomes too overwhelming, start reducing and prioritizing the things that matter most.

                                                              Start with prioritizing just 3 things every day. When you complete those 3 things, you’ll get a rush of energy and your confidence will grow.

                                                              If you’re trying to juggle too many things and are multi-tasking, your energy levels will drop and you’ll struggle to maintain focus.

                                                              Unfinished projects can make you self-critical and feel guilty which drops energy levels further, creating inaction.

                                                              Make a list of your 3 MIT (Most Important Tasks) for the next day before you go to bed. This will stop you overcommitting and get you excited about what the next day can bring.

                                                              4. Express More Gratitude

                                                              Gratitude and confidence are heavily linked. Just being thankful for what you have and what you’ve achieved increases confidence and makes you feel more optimistic.

                                                              It can help you improve your sense of wellbeing, which can bring on feelings of joy and enthusiasm.

                                                              Try starting a gratitude journal or just note down 3 things you’re grateful for every day.

                                                              5. Focus On Yourself

                                                              Exhaustion and fatigue can arrive by focusing solely on other people’s needs all the time, rather than worrying about and focusing on what you need (and want).

                                                              There are work commitments, family commitments, social commitments. You may start with the best intentions, to put in your best performance at work, to be an amazing parent and friend, to simply help others.

                                                              But sometimes, we extend ourselves too much and go beyond our personal limits to help others. That’s when constant exhaustion can creep up on us.  Which can make us more fatigued.

                                                              We all want to help and do our best for others, but there needs to be some balance. We also need to take some time out just for ourselves to recharge and rejuvenate.

                                                              6. Set Aside Rest and Recovery Time

                                                              Whether it’s a couple of hours, a day off, a mini-break or a proper holiday, time off is essential to help us recover, recharge and refocus.

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                                                              Recovery time helps fend off mental fatigue and allows us to simply kick back and relax.

                                                              The key here, though, is to remove ourselves from the daily challenges that bring on tiredness and fatigue. Here’s how.

                                                              Can you free yourself up completely from work and personal obligations to just rest and recover?

                                                              7. Take a Power Nap

                                                              When you’re feeling tired or fatigued and you have the ability to take a quick 20-minute nap, it could make a big difference to your performance for the rest of the day.

                                                              Napping can improve learning, memory and boost your energy levels quickly.

                                                              This article on the benefit of napping is a useful place to start if you want to learn more: How a 20-Minute Nap at Work Makes You Awake and Productive the Whole Day

                                                              8. Take More Exercise

                                                              The simple act of introducing some form of physical activity into your day can make a huge difference. It can boost energy levels, make you feel much better about yourself and can help you avoid fatigue.

                                                              Find something that fits into your life, be that walking, going to the gym, running or swimming. 

                                                              The key is to ensure the exercise is regular and that you are emotionally engaged and committed to stick with it.

                                                              You could also walk more which will help clear your head and shift your focus away from stressful thoughts.

                                                              9. Get More Quality Sleep

                                                              To avoid tiredness, exhaustion and fatigue, getting enough quality sleep matters. 

                                                              Your body needs sleep to recharge.  Getting the right amount of sleep every night can improve your health, reduce stress levels and help us improve our memory and learning skills.

                                                              My previous article on The Benefits of Sleep You Need to Know will give you some action steps to start improving your sleep. 

                                                              10. Improve Your Diet

                                                              Heavy or fatty meals can make you feel sluggish and tired, whilst some foods or eating strategies do just the opposite.

                                                              Our always on lives have us reaching for sweets or other sugary snacks to give us a burst of energy to keep going. Unfortunately, that boost fades quickly which can leave you feeling depleted and wanting more.

                                                              On the other hand, whole grains and healthy unsaturated fats supply the reserves you can draw on throughout the day.

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                                                              To keep energy up and steady, it’s a good idea to limit refined sugar and starches.

                                                              Eating small meals and healthy snacks every few hours throughout the day provides a steady supply of nutrients to body and brain. It’s also important not to skip breakfast.

                                                              Eating a balanced diet helps keep your blood sugar in a normal range and prevents that sluggish feeling when your blood sugar drops.

                                                              11. Manage Your Stress Levels

                                                              Stress is one of the leading causes of exhaustion and fatigue, and can seriously affect your health.

                                                              When you have increased levels of stress at work and at home, it’s easy to feel exhausted all the time. 

                                                              Identifying the causes of stress and then tackling the problems should be a priority. 

                                                              My article on How to Help Anxiety When Life is Stressing You Out shares 16 strategies you can use to overcome stress.

                                                              12. Get Hydrated

                                                              Sometimes we can be so busy that we forget to keep ourselves fully hydrated.

                                                              Water makes up about 60 percent of your body weight and is essential in maintaining our body’s basic functions.

                                                              If we don’t have enough water, it can adversely affect our mental and physical performance, which leads to tiredness and fatigue.

                                                              The recommended daily amount is around two litres a day, so to stay well hydrated keep a water bottle with you as much as possible.

                                                              The Bottom Line

                                                              These 12 tips can help you reduce your tiredness and feeling of fatigue.  Some will work better than others as we are all different, whilst others can be incorporated together in your daily life.

                                                              If you’ve tried to make positive changes to reduce fatigue and you still feel tired and exhausted, it may be time to consider making an appointment with your doctor to discuss your condition.

                                                              Featured photo credit: Annie Spratt via unsplash.com

                                                              Reference

                                                              [1]Oxford English Dictionary: Definition of fatigue
                                                              [2]NHS Choices: 10 Reasons for feeling tired
                                                              [3]Verywellhealth: What is chronic fatigue syndrome
                                                              [4]Everyday Health: Why does type 2 diabetes make you feel tired
                                                              [5]Mayo Clinic: Sleep apnea
                                                              [6]Harvard Health: The lowdown on thyroid slowdown

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