Top ten books for the Water signs
...And here it is! The final post in my Zodiac inspired book series. Saving some truly beautiful books for last, this is a list of stories that will make you believe in magic, in the impossible, in something beyond yourself. Immerse yourself in the multitude of depths these novels have to offer. Enjoy x
1. The five levels of attachment by Miguel Ruiz Jr.
Building on the principles found in his father’s bestselling book The Four Agreements, don Miguel Ruiz Jr. invites us to gauge how attached we are to our own point of view. In The Five Levels of Attachment, he will help you gain awareness of the agreements you have been implicitly making all these years that shape your reality and affect your future and show you how to release the attachments which no longer reflect who you really are.
This method is twenty years in the making. When don Miguel Ruiz Jr. began his apprenticeship into his family’s Toltec tradition, he was just fourteen years old. His first task was translating his grandmother’s talks from Spanish into English. One day, as he struggled to keep up with her, she asked him: Are you using knowledge, or is knowledge using you?
Finding the answer to this question would shape the destiny of his life. In this groundbreaking work, Ruiz explains each of the Five Levels of Attachment in detail and shows that as our level of attachment to a belief or idea increases, “who we are” becomes directly linked to “what we know.”
Our attachment to beliefs—our own and the beliefs of others—manifests as a mask we don’t realise we can take off. But with don Miguel Ruiz’s help, and some Toltec wisdom along the way, we can return to our True, Authentic Selves, unhindered by judgment and free to pursue our true life’s calling.
2. Full flight by Ashley Schumacher
*To be published on February 22nd 2022
Everyone else in the tiny town of Enfield, Texas calls fall football season, but for the forty-three members of the Fighting Enfield Marching Band, it’s contest season. And for new saxophonist Anna James, it’s her first chance to prove herself as the great musician she’s trying hard to be.
When she’s assigned a duet with mellophone player Weston Ryan, the boy her small-minded town thinks of as nothing but trouble, she’s equal parts thrilled and intimidated. But as he helps her with the duet, and she sees the smile he seems to save just for her, she can’t help but feel like she’s helping him with something too.
After her strict parents find out she’s been secretly seeing him and keep them apart, together they learn what it truly means to fight for something they love. With the marching contest nearing, and the two falling hard for one another, the unthinkable happens, and Anna is left grappling for a way forward without Weston.
3. Young Mungo by Douglas Stewart
*To be published on April 5th 2022
Growing up in a housing estate in Glasgow, Mungo and James are born under different stars--Mungo a Protestant and James a Catholic--and they should be sworn enemies if they're to be seen as men at all. Yet against all odds, they become best friends as they find a sanctuary in the pigeon dovecote that James has built for his prize racing birds. As they fall in love, they dream of finding somewhere they belong, while Mungo works hard to hide his true self from all those around him, especially from his big brother Hamish, a local gang leader with a brutal reputation to uphold. And when several months later Mungo's mother sends him on a fishing trip to a loch in Western Scotland with two strange men whose drunken banter belies murky pasts, he will need to summon all his inner strength and courage to try to get back to a place of safety, a place where he and James might still have a future.
Imbuing the everyday world of its characters with rich lyricism and giving full voice to people rarely acknowledged in the literary world, Young Mungo is a gripping and revealing story about the bounds of masculinity, the divisions of sectarianism, the violence faced by many queer people, and the dangers of loving someone too much.
4. A little life by Hanya Yanagihara
When four classmates from a small Massachusetts college move to New York to make their way, they're broke, adrift, and buoyed only by their friendship and ambition. There is kind, handsome Willem, an aspiring actor; JB, a quick-witted, sometimes cruel Brooklyn-born painter seeking entry to the art world; Malcolm, a frustrated architect at a prominent firm; and withdrawn, brilliant, enigmatic Jude, who serves as their centre of gravity.
Over the decades, their relationships deepen and darken, tinged by addiction, success, and pride. Yet their greatest challenge, each comes to realise, is Jude himself, by midlife a terrifyingly talented litigator yet an increasingly broken man, his mind and body scarred by an unspeakable childhood, and haunted by what he fears is a degree of trauma that he’ll not only be unable to overcome—but that will define his life forever.
5. Six of crows by Leigh Bardugo
Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone. . . .
A convict with a thirst for revenge
A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager
A runaway with a privileged past
A spy known as the Wraith
A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums
A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes
Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.
6. These violent delights by Chloe Gong
A blood feud between two gangs runs the streets red, leaving the city helpless in the grip of chaos. At the heart of it all is eighteen-year-old Juliette Cai, a former flapper who has returned to assume her role as the proud heir of the Scarlet Gang—a network of criminals far above the law. Their only rivals in power are the White Flowers, who have fought the Scarlets for generations. And behind every move is their heir, Roma Montagov, Juliette’s first love…and first betrayal.
But when gangsters on both sides show signs of instability culminating in clawing their own throats out, the people start to whisper. Of a contagion, a madness. Of a monster in the shadows. As the deaths stack up, Juliette and Roma must set their guns—and grudges—aside and work together, for if they can’t stop this mayhem, then there will be no city left for either to rule.
7. Only a monster by Vanessa Len
*To be published on February 22nd 2022
It should have been the perfect summer. Sent to stay with her late mother’s eccentric family in London, sixteen-year-old Joan is determined to enjoy herself. She loves her nerdy job at the historic Holland House, and when her super cute co-worker Nick asks her on a date, it feels like everything is falling into place.
But she soon learns the truth. Her family aren’t just eccentric: they’re monsters, with terrifying, hidden powers. And Nick isn’t just a cute boy: he’s a legendary monster slayer, who will do anything to bring them down.
As she battles Nick, Joan is forced to work with the beautiful and ruthless Aaron Oliver, heir to a monster family that hates her own. She’ll have to embrace her own monstrousness if she is to save herself, and her family. Because in this story . . .
. . . she is not the hero.
8. Six crimson cranes by Elizabeth Lim
Shiori, the only princess of Kiata, has a secret. Forbidden magic runs through her veins. Normally she conceals it well, but on the morning of her betrothal ceremony, Shiori loses control. At first, her mistake seems like a stroke of luck, forestalling the wedding she never wanted, but it also catches the attention of Raikama, her stepmother.
Raikama has dark magic of her own, and she banishes the young princess, turning her brothers into cranes, and warning Shiori that she must speak of it to no one: for with every word that escapes her lips, one of her brothers will die.
Penniless, voiceless, and alone, Shiori searches for her brothers, and, on her journey, uncovers a conspiracy to overtake the throne—a conspiracy more twisted and deceitful, more cunning and complex, than even Raikama's betrayal. Only Shiori can set the kingdom to rights, but to do so she must place her trust in the very boy she fought so hard not to marry. And she must embrace the magic she's been taught all her life to contain—no matter what it costs her.
9. Aristotle and Dante discover the secrets of the universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz
Dante can swim. Ari can't. Dante is articulate and self-assured. Ari has a hard time with words and suffers from self-doubt. Dante gets lost in poetry and art. Ari gets lost in thoughts of his older brother who is in prison. Dante is fair skinned. Ari's features are much darker. It seems that a boy like Dante, with his open and unique perspective on life, would be the last person to break down the walls that Ari has built around himself.
But against all odds, when Ari and Dante meet, they develop a special bond that will teach them the most important truths of their lives, and help define the people they want to be. But there are big hurdles in their way, and only by believing in each other―and the power of their friendship―can Ari and Dante emerge stronger on the other side.
10. The girl who fell beneath the sea by Axie Oh
*To be published on February 22nd 2022
Deadly storms have ravaged Mina’s homeland for generations. Floods sweep away entire villages, while bloody wars are waged over the few remaining resources. Her people believe the Sea God, once their protector, now curses them with death and despair. In an attempt to appease him, each year a beautiful maiden is thrown into the sea to serve as the Sea God’s bride, in the hopes that one day the “true bride” will be chosen and end the suffering.
Many believe that Shim Cheong, the most beautiful girl in the village—and the beloved of Mina’s older brother Joon—may be the legendary true bride. But on the night Cheong is to be sacrificed, Joon follows Cheong out to sea, even knowing that to interfere is a death sentence. To save her brother, Mina throws herself into the water in Cheong’s stead.
Swept away to the Spirit Realm, a magical city of lesser gods and mythical beasts, Mina seeks out the Sea God, only to find him caught in an enchanted sleep. With the help of a mysterious young man named Shin—as well as a motley crew of demons, gods and spirits—Mina sets out to wake the Sea God and bring an end to the killer storms once and for all.
But she doesn’t have much time: A human cannot live long in the land of the spirits. And there are those who would do anything to keep the Sea God from waking…
Thank you so much for spending the time to follow this Zodiac inspired series. If you are a water sign (or any sign, of course), comment down below if you've read any of these books and if you have, what did you think of them? Bonus points if you've read (or want to read) all ten!
Allen & Unwin, 2022. Only a monster cover. [image] <https://www.allenandunwin.com/browse/books/childrens/young-adult-fiction/Only-a-Monster-Vanessa-Len-9781760878313> .
Goodreads, 2012. Aristotle and Dante discover the secrets of the universe cover. [image] <https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/12000020-aristotle-and-dante-discover-the-secrets-of-the-universe>.
Goodreads, 2015. A little life cover. [image] <https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22822858-a-little-life>.Goodreads, 2013. The five levels of attachment cover. [image] <https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/16243338-the-five-levels-of-attachment> .
Goodreads, 2015. Six of crows cover. [image] <https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23437156-six-of-crows?ac=1&from_search=true&qid=de1JdlRtfm&rank=1> .
Goodreads, 2015. Six of crows cover. [image] <https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23437156-six-of-crows> .
Goodreads, 2022. Full flight cover. [image] <https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/57693223-full-flight> .
Goodreads, 2022. The girl who fell beneath the sea cover. [image] <https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/56978100-the-girl-who-fell-beneath-the-sea>.
Goodreads, 2020. These violent delights cover. [image] <https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50892212-these-violent-delights>.
Goodreads, 2022. Young mungo cover. [image] <https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/58891551-young-mungo>.
Hachette Australia, 2021. Six crimson cranes cover. [image] <https://www.hachette.com.au/elizabeth-lim/six-crimson-cranes> .