See an Overview of this Rating System and Algorithm Here
#1 Michael O’Brien’s The Island of the World
Island of the World is the story of a child born in 1933 into the turbulent world of the Balkans and tracing his life into the third millennium. The central character is Josip Lasta, the son of an impoverished school teacher in a remote village high in the mountains of the Bosnian interior. As the novel begins, World War II is underway and the entire region of Yugoslavia is torn by conflicting factions: German and Italian occupying armies, and the rebel forces that resist them—the fascist Ustashe, Serb nationalist Chetniks, and Communist Partisans…
#2 Andrew Peterson’s Wingfeather Saga Books 1-4
Janner Igiby, his brother, Tink, and their disabled sister, Leeli, are gifted children as all children are, loved well by a noble mother and ex-pirate grandfather. But they will need all their gifts and all that they love to survive the evil pursuit of the venomous Fangs of Dang, who have crossed the dark sea to rule the land with malice…
#3 S.D. Smith’s The Green Ember Saga 1-4
Heather and Picket are extraordinary rabbits with ordinary lives until calamitous events overtake them, spilling them into a cauldron of misadventures. They discover that their own story is bound up in the tumult threatening to overwhelm the wider world. Kings fall and kingdoms totter. Tyrants ascend and terrors threaten. Betrayal beckons…
#4 Stephen King’s The Green Mile
Welcome to Cold Mountain Penitentiary, home to the Depression-worn men of E Block. Convicted killers all, each awaits his turn to walk “the Green Mile,” the lime-colored linoleum corridor leading to a final meeting with Old Sparky, Cold Mountain’s electric chair. Prison guard Paul Edgecombe has seen his share of oddities over the years working the Mile, but he’s never seen anything like John Coffey—a man with the body of a giant and the mind of a child, condemned for a crime terrifying in its violence and shocking in its depravity…
#5 S.D. Smith’s The Last Archer (Green Ember Archer 1)
A Green Ember story set during Heather and Picket’s arrival at Cloud Mountain, The Last Archer follows the journey of Jo Shanks. Jo is a gifted archer with a burden on his back and a fire within. Eager to see the Longtreaders receive justice, he travels from his Halfwind Citadel home to a Cloud Mountain poised on the brink of war. What he finds there will confront his convictions and test his resolve as the war begins and King Jupiter’s heir is revealed. A kingdom in the balance. An arrow aimed at the heart of darkness. Who will take the shot?
#6 J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings Trilogy
One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them, One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them. Sauron, the Dark Lord, has gathered to him all the Rings of Power—the means by which he intends to rule Middle-earth. All he lacks in his plans for dominion is the One Ring—the ring that rules them all—which has fallen into the hands of the hobbit, Bilbo Baggins.
#7 S.D. Smith’s The First Fowler (Green Ember Archer 2)
A Green Ember story set after the attack on Cloud Mountain and the battle at Jupiter’s Crossing. In this sequel to The Last Archer, Jo Shanks is back in action against the Preylord tyrants. Alongside Helmer and Emma, this riveting adventure sees Jo on a perilous journey where survival and the cause itself are at stake. Faced with a calamitous quandary, the loyal band of rabbits must break out of a fatal trap and survive to breathe life into the fledgling resistance. An heir in peril. An archer hunted from the skies. Who will hunt the hunter?
#8 Bo Giertz’s The Hammer of God
In this bestselling novel, three pastors learn the necessity of relying on God’s grace. They fall short of their pastoral duties through public humiliation, self-doubt, inability to accept God’s promises in their own lives, and divisions and quarreling among their parishioners. Ultimately each man rejects temptations and permits the Holy Spirit to work through him. This revised edition includes the final chapter, never before published in English. The new introduction provides historical and theological background to deepen the reader’s understanding of the stories.
#9 Christine Cohen’s The Winter King
A village trapped in winter, a tyrannical god, and a girl who will do anything to keep her family alive… Ever since Cora’s father disappeared through the ice, whispers about her family’s “curse” have grown increasingly louder. Desperate to help her mother and siblings survive another bleak season in the Winter King’s frozen grasp, Cora begins to bend (and even break) the rules she has kept since she was a little girl. But when she discovers a secret that’s much bigger than herself, she realizes too late that she has put herself–and those she loves–in even greater peril. Wintry and dangerous but hauntingly lovely, The Winter King is the debut novel from author Christine Cohen.
#10 Wendell Berry’s Jayber Crow
“This is a book about Heaven,” says Jayber Crow, “but I must say too that . . . I have wondered sometimes if it would not finally turn out to be a book about Hell.” It is 1932 and he has returned to his native Port William to become the town’s barber. Orphaned at age ten, Jayber Crow’s acquaintance with loneliness and want have made him a patient observer of the human animal, in both its goodness and frailty. He began his search as a “pre–ministerial student” at Pigeonville College. There, freedom met with new burdens and a young man needed more than a mirror to find himself…
- Smith, S.D. Tales of Old Natalia 1-2. (3.98 avg.)
- Tolkien, J.R.R. The Fall of Numenor. (3.97)
- Berry, Wendell. Hannah Coulter. (3.97)
- Peterson, Andrew. Wingfeather Tales. (3.93)
- Taylor, Helen. Little Pilgrim’s Progress
- Dostoevsky, Fyodor. The Brothers Karamazov. (3.93)
- Berry, Wendell. The Memory of Old Jack. (3.89)
- Macdonald, George. Sir Gibbie. (3.85)
- Lewis, C.S. The Great Divorce. (3.82)
- Edwards, Gene. A Tale of Three Kings. (3.78)
- Tolkien, J.R.R. Letters From Father Christmas. (3.78)
- Dumas, Alexandre. The Count of Monte Cristo. (3.78)
- Tolkien, J.R.R. The Hobbit. (3.78)
- Peretti, Frank. Darkness 1-2. (3.77 avg.)
- Macdonald, George. The Princess & Curdie & The Goblin. (3.76)
- Lewis, C.S. The Chronicles of Narnia 1-7. (3.76)
- Chiang, Ted. Stories of Your Life and Others. (3.74)
- Lewis, C.S. The Screwtape Letters. (3.72)
- Dostoevsky, Fyodor. Crime and Punishment. (3.72)
- Macdonald, George. The Curate’s Awakening. (3.70)