What I Read: 2016

2016 was…pretty terrible. Not completely awful, but the stand-outs are pretty bad, you have to admit. I’m not going to list all of the crappy things that happened because we already all know went down and we’re all tired of hearing about it over and over again. Luckily we have books so we can ignore our own dystopia by reading about someone else’s!

In 2016 I visited The Book Thing in Baltimore at least once before it experienced a fire in March – but they’re rebuilding and still taking donations every weekend! – and attended the National Book Festival for the first time. I also said that I was going to do NaNoWriMo and then didn’t write a single word, so like 2016 itself, I clearly had some ups and downs with books this year. Unlike 2016, my book year was more good than bad:

  1. The Wednesday Sisters – Meg Waite Clayton
  2. Longbourn – Jo Baker
  3. Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between – Jennifer E. Smith
  4. The Guest Cat – Takashi Hiraide
  5. How I Paid for College – Marc Acito
  6. Good Enough to Eat – Stacey Ballis
  7. A Guide to the Birds of East Africa – Nicholas Drayson
  8. Mosquitoland – David Arnold
  9. Alias Grace – Margaret Atwood
  10. Yes Please – Amy Poehler
  11. Year of Wonders – Geraldine Brooks
  12. The Summer I Turned Pretty – Jenny Han
  13. It’s Not Summer Without You – Jenny Han
  14. We’ll Always Have Summer – Jenny Han
  15. Suite Français – Irène Némirovsky
  16. The Last Summer (of You & Me) – Ann Brashares
  17. Hotel Pastis – Peter Mayle
  18. Jane Austen in Boca – Paula Marantz Cohen
  19. Pawleys Island – Dorothea Benton Frank
  20. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – JK Rowling, Jack Thorne, John Tiffany
  21. All the Light We Cannot See – Anthony Doerr
  22. Daughter of Smoke & Bone – Laini Taylor
  23. Days of Blood & Starlight – Laini Taylor
  24. Dreams of Gods & Monsters – Laini Taylor
  25. Ocean at the End of the Lane – Neil Gaiman
  26. I Remember Nothing – Nora Ephron
  27. Fahrenheit 451 – Ray Bradbury
  28. Mr. Darcy’s Daughters – Elizabeth Aston
  29. Lily and the Duke – Helen Hardt
  30. A Man Called Ove – Frederik Backman
  31. Dear Elizabeth – Sarah Ruhl
  32. The Lathe of Heaven – Ursula K. Le Guin
  33. The Princess Diarist – Carrie Fisher

Top five, in no particular order:
A Man Called Ove
Hotel Pastis
How I Paid for College
All the Light We Cannot See
Yes Please

Honorable mentions:
The Princess Diarist
Dear Elizabeth
Suite Français

Wouldn’t read again:
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (though I would see it onstage because I’ve heard that it’s SO much better performed than read…and I can only hope that that’s true because on paper I could barely even finish it.)

Let me know if you’ve read any of these and what your favorite books for escaping the real world were in 2016!