Monday, January 31, 2022

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

Hosted by The Book Date

I continue to improve after my bout with COVID at the start of January. My cough got a lot better last week, and though energy/stamina are not quite back to my normal baseline, I had a good week with no serious "crash" days. I still need more sleep than usual and struggle to get out of bed before 9 am (a battle I lost yesterday!), but I am beginning to get out into the world. I made quick stops at Kohl's and Michael's last week - major outings! I might even attempt the grocery store this week. I did get up on time this morning, so I could get to a doctor's appointment, and now I'm exhausted, so baby steps!

We had a snow day on Saturday! We only got 3-4 inches in northern Delaware, but that's a big deal here. The crazy thing is that the beaches, 2 hours south, and the Jersey Shore got clobbered by this storm--my friends at the beach got 14 inches! 

While my son and husband were shoveling our driveway, I accomplished something truly amazing. I cleared out a cupboard! Our house has gotten horribly cluttered this past year, with my health worse than usual, our son moving back home, and a lot of my father-in-law's stuff stored here, too. This was what we called the "craft cupboard," filled with art supplies, craft kits, and science kits left over from when our sons were young. They're in their mid-20's now, so this was long overdue. It's just the first step in a string of planned decluttering projects this year; I needed the space here so I could clear out other areas. I'm very proud of finally making a little progress, so I will share my Before and After pics!



I posted my weekly Friday Reads update on my YouTube channel last week (and another video for the chronic illness side of my channel). Check this out if you want to hear more about the books I was reading last week:

Friday Reads 1-28-22

Here's what we've all been reading this past week:

After finishing that terrifying nonfiction book about generic drugs and the pharmaceutical industry (and my husband and I doing online searches to try to find out where our meds are made!), I needed a dose of fun fiction. I also wanted to get a head start on my 2022 Classics Challenge (I didn't hit my goal last year). So, I chose The Illustrated Man by Ray Bradbury. I'm a huge fan of his and read every one of his books in our public library when I was a teen! This is a loosely linked collection of short stories. Each one is a tattoo on the man of the title that comes to life at night and tells a story. As always, his stories are brilliant--so clever and thought-provoking! I've been loving this book and am almost finished now.


I also finished listening to Mercy Street by Jennifer Haigh on audio. Haigh is another favorite author, and this novel was excellent. It was about several different people who are each in some way connected to the women's clinic of the title in Boston. The author alternates between characters, whose paths cross in various ways, and you really get to know each of them intimately. If you haven't tried Haigh yet, I recommend this one (out tomorrow) and all of her backlist. To hear more about this novel and the Ray Bradbury book, check out my Friday Reads video.


My husband, Ken, is still reading Gardens of the Moon by Steven Erikson, book one of The Malazan Book of the Fallen series, a fantasy novel recommended by our son. This is a long, dense book, but he's been enjoying it and is near the end! (When I said last week that he only had 60 pages left, I misheard--it was 160 pages!)


Our son, 27, finished reading a gift from his girlfriend, The Rage of Dragons by Evan Winter, book one of The Burning series. He says it was great, and he will definitely read more of the series. Next, he read Realm Breaker by Victoria Aveyard, the start of a new series, and enjoyed that, too. 

Next, our son read a book I got him for his birthday last year, Kings of the Wyld by Nicholas Eames. I heard about this one on Daniel Green's Top 10 Fantasy Series video - many of his top 10 are also my son's, so I knew he'd enjoy this one, which incorporates humor into sword-wielding fantasy. And now (he's had a lot of reading time lately), he's reading Chronicles of the Black Company by Glen Cook, book one in the series of the same name. He says it's a series he's been wanting to read for years, and he spotted it in our local second-hand bookstore last year!

Blog posts from last week - catching up!

Movie Monday: Parasite - this Oscar-winner was full of surprises and very entertaining.

2022 Reading Challenges - finally! Now, I'm ready to begin the new year. 

Nonfiction Review: Janesville by Amy Goldstein - an immersive, fascinating look at what happened to a town and its citizens when a huge GM plant closed.

What Are You Reading Monday is hosted by Kathryn at Book Date, so head over and check out her blog and join the Monday fun! You can also participate in a kid/teen/YA version hosted by Unleashing Readers.

You can follow me on Twitter at @SueBookByBook or on Facebook on my blog's page.  

What are you and your family reading this week?


Thursday, January 27, 2022

Nonfiction Review: Janesville

Once again, I was proven wrong! As has happened so many times before, one of my book groups chose a book I was not interested in reading, but once I started it, I ended up really enjoying it. This time, the book was Janesville: An American Story by Amy Goldstein, a nonfiction account of a town in Wisconsin and what happened to it after a huge GM plant shut down.

Janesville was a vibrant, prosperous town in rural Wisconsin, with a GM plant at the center of its history and its present. GM started the plant in February 1923, and the assembly plant continued to run for over 80 years. It grew to occupy 4.8 million square feet and employed more than seven thousand people at its peak. And on December 23, 2008, the last vehicle rolled off its assembly line. The book goes back to review a bit of the history of the Janesville plant and the town, but most of it deals with what happened after the GM plant closed. The author tells this story through a number of local residents, mostly people who worked at the plant for years and suddenly found themselves unemployed but also some of the people who tried to help the out-of-work GMers. The people highlighted in these stories all took different paths. A few found other jobs, though over the years, GM had become an integral part of the economy and other companies that supplied goods or services to the plant went out of business or had to lay off workers when the plant closed. Some went to the local community college to take advantage of retraining incentives, offered through grants and other resources. Others couldn't take the sudden pay cut and agreed to a transfer to a different GM plant, which meant lonely weekdays and very long commutes every weekend to see their families. Many families found themselves on the receiving end of charity and food drives for the first time in their lives. The effects of the plant closing were far-reaching and long-lasting, and the author digs deep into the reasons why the town wasn't able to simply rebound after such a devastating change. She not only looks at economic factors but also political and societal factors and takes a sympathetic look at the real people caught in this no-win situation.

Despite my misgivings and expectation of a dry account, I was immediately pulled into this fascinating, heartbreaking story. The author did a tremendous amount of research and talked to not only the plant's workers but others in the community, including bankers, leaders of the local college, politicians, and more. She very effectively shows the complexity and intricacy of all of these people and systems in town and makes it clear that there are no easy answers. And by zeroing in on individual people and real families (not just employees but spouses and kids, too), she shares a deep sense of empathy and insight into their limited choices and the--often sad--outcomes. By the end of the book, five years after the plant closed, some people have rebounded or found new paths for themselves, but many have not. As the subtitle says, this is not just the story of a single, unique town, but an American story of similar towns and situations across the nation. The book is very well-written and immersive and led to some great discussions in our book group.

297 pages, Simon & Schuster

Reading Challenges: Janesville by Amy Goldstein counted for:

January's Monthly Motif (new-to-me author)

J in the Alphabet Soup Challenge

My first nonfiction book for the Nonfiction Reader Challenge, AND it fit into the category of Economics.

Diversity Challenge

Wisconsin in the Literary Escapes Challenge

Note: This post contains affiliate links. Purchases from these links provide a small commission to me (pennies per purchase), to help offset the time I spend writing for this blog, at no extra cost to you.

Visit my YouTube Channel for more bookish fun!


Listen to a sample of the audiobook here and/or download it from Audible.


You can buy the book through, where your purchase will support the indie bookstore of your choice (or all indie bookstores)--the convenience of shopping online while still buying local!



Or you can order Janesville from Book Depository, with free shipping worldwide.

Wednesday, January 26, 2022

2022 Reading Challenges

Better late than never, right? Hey, it's still January! Time to pick out my reading challenges for the year! All of these this year are my favorites from years' past. I'm signing up for:

Mount TBR Reading Challenge 2022 hosted by My Reader's Block

I am once again setting my goal at Mt. Ararat, at 48 books from my TBR shelves. I missed it last year, with just 38 books from my shelves, but I want to challenge myself because my shelves are overflowing! Note that the challenge allows e-books and audios to count, but my main goal is to get through some of the physical books I own (my TBR bookcase now has double rows), so I only count physical books. This challenge has monthly review link-ups.


2022 Monthly Motif Reading Challenge hosted by Girlxoxo.

I enjoy this challenge every year! I hit all of twelve of the month monthly motifs last year, so I will try to hit them all again in 2022! This also has monthly review link-ups. 2022 Monthly Motifs:

JANUARY-  New To You. Celebrate the New Year with something new to you- a new genre, a new author, a new book series, a new book purchase, etc.

FEBRUARY- Girl Power. Highlighting Women! Female Authors, Fierce female characters, feminism, female body positivity, females in science/government, etc.

MARCH- Buzzed About Books. Read a book you saw buzzed about a lot in 2021 but haven’t gotten around to reading it yet.

APRIL- Books to Screen. Read a book that has a movie or TV adaptation made based on it. For an extra challenge, watch the show after reading the book.

MAY- Book Lovers Unite. Read a book set in a library or bookstore; with a librarian, author, or book loving character; OR a book with the word ‘BOOK’ in the title.

JUNE- Supporting PRIDE through books. Read a book by an author who is a member of the LGBTQIA+ community or a book featuring LGBTQIA+ character(s).

JULY- Summer Lovin’ – Having a Blast. This month it’s all about the beach reads, rom coms,  and/or love stories. Pick something fun and light-hearted.

AUGUST- Quick Lit. Novellas, Graphic Novels, Poetry Collections, books under 200 pages, one sitting reads.

SEPTEMBER- Title Play. Read a book with a clever title that uses a play on words, a pun, a joke, or titles that have double meanings. 

OCTOBER- Murder or Magic. Read a murder mystery book or a magical realism book.

NOVEMBER- Books in Translation. Read any book that wasn’t originally written in your native language but has since been translated to it.

DECEMBER- The Fire is So Delightful. Read a book that has a fire, flames, candles, smoke, or burning in the title or on the cover.


Back to the Classics Challenge 2022 hosted by Books and Chocolate.

Another challenge I return to each year. I usually set my goal at 6 classics (in 6 categories), and that works well for me, though last year, I only read 4 classics. I am already reading one now, so I hope to meet my goal this year! Here are the categories for 2022:

1. A 19th century classic. Any book first published from 1800 to 1899

2. A 20th century classic. Any book first published from 1900 to 1972. All books must have been published at least 50 years ago; the only exceptions are books which were written by 1972 and posthumously published.

3. A classic by a woman author.

4. A classic in translation.  Any book first published in a language that is not your primary language. You may read it in translation or in its original language, if you prefer. 

5. A classic by BIPOC author. Any book published by a non-white author.

 Mystery/Detective/Crime classic. It can be fiction or non-fiction (true crime). Examples include Murder on the Orient Express, Crime and Punishment, In Cold Blood.

7. A classic short story collection. Any single volume that contains at least six short stories. The book can have a single author or can be an anthology of multiple authors. 

8. Pre-1800 classic. Anything written before 1800. Plays and epic poems, such as the Odyssey, are acceptable in this category. 

9. A nonfiction classic. Travel, memoirs, and biographies are great choices for this category.

10. Classic that's been on your TBR list the longest. Find the classic book that's been hanging around unread the longest, and finally cross it off your list!  

11. Classic set in a place you'd like to visit. Can be real or imaginary -- Paris, Tokyo, the moon, Middle Earth, etc. It can be someplace you've never been, or someplace you'd like to visit again.

12. Wild card classic. Any classic book you like, any category, as long as it's at least 50 years old! 


2022 Alphabet Soup Reading Challenge hosted by Escape with Dollycas Into a Good Book.

This type of challenge was a new for me in 2021, and I enjoyed it, so I'm trying another! You just track the books you read, trying to cover all letters of the alphabet (first letter of the title, not counting articles). Last year, I filled in 21 of 26 letters.


2022 Nonfiction Reader Challenge hosted by Book'd Out.

I always sign up for a nonfiction challenge, and I enjoyed this one last year! I read 15 nonfiction books in 2020, so I will sign up for the Nonfiction Nosher category and shoot for reading at least 12. Last year, I read 13!


1. Social History

2. Popular Science

3. Language

4. Medical Memoir

5. Climate/Weather

6. Celebrity

7. Reference

8. Geography

9. Linked to a podcast

10. Wild Animals

11. Economics

12. Published in 2022


Diversity Reading Challenge 2022 hosted by Celebrity Readers.

This is also a familiar challenge for me that I enjoy every year. I read 33 diverse books last year, so I will shoot for 40 this year! This challenge also includes monthly mini challenges and a link-up for reviews. 

JANUARY – diverse folktales/culture/mythology; or diverse retelling; or non-western setting
FEBRUARYpoc: Black/African American
MARCH#ownvoices; or gender: female authors in male-dominated genres/non-fiction
APRIL – poc: Middle Eastern/South Asian
MAYpoc: East Asian/Southeast Asian/Pacific Islander
JUNELGBT+ pride summer: sexuality and gender identity
JULY – LGBT+ pride summer: sexuality and gender identity
AUGUSTmental health/addiction
SEPTEMBERpoc: hispanic/latinx
OCTOBERphysical/sensory/cognitive/intellectual/developmental disabilities
NOVEMBERpoc: Native American
DECEMBERreligious minorities


Travel the World in Books Reading Challenge hosted by Mom's Small Victories 

I signed up for this one back in 2014, so this is a continuation (it's a perpetual challenge) - I can't wait to see what places I visit in books in 2022! In 2021, my books took me to 36 places outside the U.S., covering 17 different countries.


2022 Literary Escapes Challenge hosted by Escape with Dollycas Into a Good Book.

I love tracking where I read domestically, as well. In 2021, I read books set in 23 different states. I'm looking forward to reading in even more states this year!









District of Columbia





















New Hampshire

New Jersey

New Mexico

New York

North Carolina

North Dakota





Rhode Island

South Carolina

South Dakota







West Virginia




Big Book Summer Challenge hosted by Book By Book (me!)

My own annual challenge that I host each summer, beginning Memorial Day weekend (end of May) and running until Labor Day (first Monday of September). Hope you'll join me for the laid-back fun this summer!



Monday, January 24, 2022

Movie Monday: Parasite

As usual, we were searching for a movie Saturday night, something with great ratings that is free on one of the streaming services we get. I noticed that Parasite is now free on Hulu, so I talked my husband into trying it. Neither of us probably would have chosen this Korean movie with subtitles out of the blue, but I knew it had won the Oscar for Best Picture in 2019 (along with a slew of other Oscars that year). We went into it thinking that it was some sort of thriller, maybe about some kind of pathogen or infestation? We were so wrong. This movie kept surprising us (in a good way) and turning into something we never expected. 

Ki Woo is an older teenaged boy, played by Woo-sik Choi, who is at loose ends. He dreams of going to college, but right now, he's stuck in a basement apartment with the rest of his family. His dad, played by Kang-ho Song, is unemployed, though a medal hanging on the wall in a frame indicates he once had a bright future ahead. He seems depressed in the opening scenes. Ki Woo's older sister, Ki Jung (played by So-dam Park), is similarly unemployed, with no future, though she has some artistic talent. And their mother is also unemployed, though she tries to stir her family to earn some money by folding pizza boxes for a local restaurant. One day, Ki Woo is talking with a friend who's in college. He explains that he has an awesome job tutoring a wealthy high school girl in English, and he asks if Ki Woo wants to take over the job while he travels overseas. Though Ki Woo can't afford school right now, he did very well on his exams, including English, so his friend recommends him to the wealthy family. Ki Woo is in awe when he walks up to their huge, modern home, quite a contrast to his own family's basement apartment. They have an enormous fenced-in yard, windows everywhere, and the latest conveniences. He begins tutoring their daughter, Da Hye, and earning more money than he ever has before. When the mother mentions she is looking for an art teacher for her rambunctious younger son, Ki Woo recommends his sister, hiding her identity by saying she is the cousin of a friend at school. And then ... well, you'll never guess what's coming!

That was just the basic set-up from the earliest scenes of the movie because the fun and cleverness of this film come from the twisty surprises around every corner! It's difficult to categorize Parasite, either, because it has so many different moods and pieces. It's very funny, especially in the first half. Later, things turn quite dark, with plenty of tension and suspense, turning into a thriller. And it is also very sad at times. We don't watch many movies with subtitles, but we got used to them--we just discovered we had to finish dinner first and pay attention! We quickly got into the spirit of the movie and went along with its flow. And what a flow it is! We thoroughly enjoyed this ever-surprising movie and recommended it to our son and his girlfriend last night.

Parasite is currently available for free on Hulu or for a small fee on YouTube, Google Play, Apple TV, and VuDu.

It's Monday 1/24! What Are You Reading?

Hosted by The Book Date

I'm slowly recovering from COVID, bit by bit. I passed two big milestones last week: a negative COVID test on Thursday (finally!) and leaving the house on Saturday to go out in public! I just took a quick trip to the local natural foods store, but it felt like a big event after being mostly housebound for three weeks. And, today I am finally going to a podiatrist appointment that was scheduled for the first week in January. 

Out of the house! In public!

I also tried a short, slow walk at our local nature center last Tuesday, and it was glorious to be outdoors again, but it was too much for me and I was in bad shape the next day. Baby steps! I know it's going to be a slow recovery, due to my underlying immune disorder, but I am very relieved to see these small signs of improvement. I will try another walk this week.

Escaped! Out for a short walk.

I did manage to record a couple of videos later last week, and I got one of them uploaded:

Friday Reads 1-21-22 - where I talk about my current reads

And here are the books we have all been reading this past week:

I am almost finished reading Bottle of Lies by Katherine Eban. This nonfiction book was the choice for my neighborhood book group on Zoom last week (I wasn't well enough to join in). The author is an investigative journalist, and the book is about dangerous fraud and scandal in the generic drug business. It's an excellent book--very well-researched and well-written--but wow, so scary! I'm reading the Epilogue now, and it seems that many of the horrifying issues uncovered by investigators and whistleblowers have not yet been corrected. Ugh.

On audio, I am still listening to Mercy Street by Jennifer Haigh, which will be released on February 1. I love Haigh's novels, and it's been years since she published a new one, so I was thrilled to spot her name in the list of upcoming releases! This novel centers around a women's health clinic in Boston and the lives of several people involved in it: Claudia, a counselor who works there; Anthony, who grew up nearby, lives with his mother, and is devoted to anti-abortion protests; and Timmy, a local weed dealer who both Claudia and Anthony frequent. Haigh has such a talent for bringing ordinary characters to life on the page.



My husband, Ken, is still reading Gardens of the Moon by Steven Erikson, book one of The Malazan Book of the Fallen series, a fantasy novel recommended by our son. This is a long, dense book, but he says he only has 60 pages left now! It was a slow start, but he's been enjoying it.

Our son, 27, is still reading a book that was a gift from his girlfriend, The Rage of Dragons by Evan Winter, book one of The Burning series. Last week, I heard a Booktuber recapping her Best Books of 2021. She mentioned a bunch of my son's all-time fantasy favorites ... and this book! So, I'm guessing it's right up his alley. Besides, it's listed as one of Time magazine's Top 100 Fantasy Books of all time.


I worked all week on my 2021 book summary. Here are my blog posts from last week:

Movie Monday: Finch - an entertaining movie--warm and funny--starring Tom Hanks

Best Books Read in 2021 - Finally! My year-end summary after an excellent reading year.

2021 Reading Challenges Wrap-Up - I enjoyed lots of fun challenges last year - now I need to pick some new ones, hopefully before the end of January!

What Are You Reading Monday is hosted by Kathryn at Book Date, so head over and check out her blog and join the Monday fun! You can also participate in a kid/teen/YA version hosted by Unleashing Readers.

You can follow me on Twitter at @SueBookByBook or on Facebook on my blog's page.   

What are you and your family reading this week?

Saturday, January 22, 2022

2021 Reading Challenges Wrap-Up

Better late than never! COVID interfered with my usual start-of-the-year blog posts, but I just posted my Best Books of 2021 Summary, and now it's time to sum up my 2021 Reading Challenges! You can check out my 2021 Reading Challenge tab to see the lists of books read for each challenge.

Here's what I joined and how I did:

Mount TBR Reading Challenge 2021 hosted by My Reader's Block

My goal was to read 48 books from my TBR shelves, and I missed that, reading a total of 38 books from my own shelves last year. That was 48% of my books read ... and yet somehow, my TBR bookcase is still overflowing!


2021 Monthly Motif Reading Challenge hosted by Girlxoxo. 

Another annual challenge I always enjoy! And in 2021, I read books in the monthly motifs all 12 months! Success! 

Back to the Classics Challenge 2021 hosted by Books and Chocolate

My goal was once again to read 6 classics in 6 different categories, but I only read 4 classics last year. But Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy was 900+ pages, so maybe that counts as two?? I will try again this year!


2021 AtoZ Reading Challenge hosted by Bookstacks and Golden Moms

This was my first year for this challenge, and I enjoyed it! Though I soon realized certain letters pop up again and again. Do you know I read 11 books whose titles began with the letter A last year? In the end, I filled in 21 of 26 letters, missing only J, K, P, Q, and X. Of the monthly Mini Challenges, I hit 8 of the 12. This was a fun challenge I plan to do again!


2021 PopSugar Reading Challenge hosted by POPSUGAR.

Once again, I joined the Pop Sugar Challenge which provides 50 unique and fun categories. I read books in 37 of those categories in 2021.


2021 Nonfiction Reader Challenge hosted by Book'd Out.

I always enjoy a Nonfiction Challenge. For 2021, I sign up for the Nonfiction Know-It-all category, hoping to read at least 12 nonfiction books ... and I read 13! Success! I also filled in 8 of the 12 categories.


Diversity Reading Challenge 2021 hosted by Celebrity Readers.

I also always enjoy a diversity challenge. My goal was to read 40 diverse books in 2021, and I ended up reading 33. Of the Monthly Themes, I hit 7 of the 12. 


Travel the World in Books Reading Challenge hosted by Mom's Small Victories 

This is a perpetual challenge that I signed up for in 2014 and continue every year. In 2021, my reading took me to 36 locations outside the U.S. and to 17 different countries (lots of duplicates with UK, Canada, and Australia!). I traveled to some interesting places in my books last year!


2021 Literary Escapes Challenge hosted by Escape with Dollycas Into a Good Book.

I like tracking where I read domestically, too. In 2021, my reading took me to 23 different states (versus 24 in 2020). SO many books are set in California and New York!


Bookish Bingo hosted by Chapter Break - not really a challenge per se, but a fun game that I played every month in 2021, with a different Reading Bingo card for each month.


Big Book Summer Challenge 2021 hosted by Book By Book (me!)

My own challenge that I host every year from Memorial Day weekend (end of May to Labor Day (early September), where the goal is to read books with 400 or more pages (just one or two or however many you choose). In 2021, I read 12 Big Books (including audios) during the summer!


Readers Imbibing Peril XVI Challenge:

I love this annual fall challenge to read darker books! #ripxvi #Perilreaders In 2021, I read 11 books featuring darker themes in September and October.


Nonfiction November 2021:

I read 7 nonfiction books last November.

That's it! Check out my full lists for each of these challenges on my 2021 Challenges page

What reading challenges did you enjoy last year?


Friday, January 21, 2022

Best Books Read in 2021

COVID delayed my year-end wrap-up--not a great way to start the year--but here it is!

First, I'll share some stats and fun facts about my reading year, then my Top Picks in different categories, and finally my Top 10 (or whatever) lists in each category. It was an outstanding reading year, so I had some tough choices to make.

You can see a complete list, with links to reviews, of all the books I've read since 2015 at the Book Reviews tab.

Stats and Facts

Total Books Read in 2021 = 78 (just a few less than in 2020)


Adult Fiction = 45 (58%)

Adult Nonfiction = 11 (14%) – 6 were memoir

Teen/YA = 10 (13%)

Middle-Grade = 12 (15%) 


Of those books, 

Audiobooks = 25

Graphic Novel/nonfiction = 10

Poetry = 0


More Facts:

Women Authors = 47 (60%)

Diverse books = 33 (42%)

From my own shelves = 38 (49%)

Re-reads = 1

Authors read more than once in 2021: Connie Willis

Shortest book: The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde (play) – 94 pages

Longest book: Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy – 964 pages

Average book length: 353 pages


Top Picks - Best of the Best

So many good books! See below for my Top 10 lists. Links are to my reviews. I try to force myself to choose one best, but I just had to declare a tie in fiction last year!

Best Adult Fiction

It's a tie! Both of these books blew me away, made me laugh and cry, and got perfect 10's:

The Heart's Invisible Furies by John Boyne



A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles  

Best Short Stories

Not the End of the World by Kate Atkinson 




Best Nonfiction

  The Sixth Extinction by Elizabeth Kolbert 



Best Memoir

No Cure For Being Human (And Other Truths I Need to Hear) by Kate Bowler  



Best Audiobook

The Night Watchman by Louise Erdrich  



Best Teen/YA

Young Man with Camera by Emil Sher  



Best Middle-Grade

Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie by Jordan Sonnenblick 



Best Graphic Novel/Memoir

Flamer by Mike Curato  


Top 10 (or Whatever) Lists

Lists are alphabetical. Some books appear in more than one category.

Top 10 Adult Fiction

The Air You Breathe by Frances de Ponte Peebles

All Clear by Connie Willis

Blackout by Connie Willis

The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd

Clock Dance by Anne Tyler

A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles

The Heart's Invisible Furies by John Boyne

The Night Watchman by Louise Erdrich

The Summer Guest by Justin Cronin

The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett


Top 8 Nonfiction/Memoir

Becoming by Michelle Obama (re-read)

Crying in H Mart by Michelle Zauner

An Elegant Defense: The Extraordinary New Science of the Immune System by Matt Richtel

I'll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman's Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer by Michelle McNamara

Nature's Best Hope by Douglas Tallamy

No Cure For Being Human (And Other Truths I Need to Hear) by Kate Bowler

The Sisters of Auschwitz by Roxane van Iperen

The Sixth Extinction by Elizabeth Kolbert


Top 5 Teen/YA

All of This Is True by Lygia Day Peñaflor

Dragon Hoops by Gene Luen Yang

Flamer by Mike Curato

Young Man with Camera by Emil Sher

Zara Hossain Is Here by Sabina Khan


Top 5 Middle-Grade

A Corner of White by Jacalyn Moriarty

Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie by Jordan Sonnenblick

A Home for Goddesses and Dogs by Leslie Connor

Other Boys by Damian Alexander

The Remarkable Journey of Coyote Sunrise by Dan Gemeinhart


Top 5 Graphic Novel/Memoir

Dragon Hoops by Gene Luen Yang

Flamer by Mike Curato

A Map to the Sun by Sloane Leong

Other Boys by Damian Alexander

Twins by Varian Johnson and Shannon Wright


Top 4 Short Stories

Astray by Emma Donoghue

Breakfast at Tiffany's by Truman Capote (novella & short stories)

Not the End of the World by Kate Atkinson

Whisky for Breakfast by Christopher P. Mooney


Top 10 Audiobooks

All of This Is True by Lygia Day Peñaflor

Animal Dreams by Barbara Kingsolver

Becoming by Michelle Obama (re-read)

A Corner of White by Jacalyn Moriarty

An Elegant Defense: The Extraordinary New Science of the Immune System by Matt Richtel

The Night Watchman by Louise Erdrich

The Remarkable Journey of Coyote Sunrise by Dan Gemeinhart

The Sisters of Auschwitz by Roxane van Iperen

Under the Whispering Door by T.J. Klune

Zara Hossain Is Here by Sabina Khan