Top 10 Books I Read in 2022

Somehow, it is time for a top ten books list again?! I don’t even want to contemplate how fast this year has gone. But at the same time, thank goodness it’s over.

I wish I could say I read a wide variety of genres, but that isn’t really true. I dipped my toe in other subjects, but mostly still stuck with fantasy, sci-fi, or contemporary. Oh, well. I like what I like.

That said, the whiplash is strong with this list, especially in the middle, which I find hilarious. But the order these books are in felt about right, though I will certainly recommend every single one of these with about equal enthusiasm if you encounter me in the wild. But be warned, I might not shut up about them if you do mention them to me.

Note: This list features only books I read this year that were new to me, regardless of when they were published.

10. The Problem With Prophecies

Scott Reintgen; middle grade fantasy

This is such a great middle grade story with delightful characters, solid adventure, and really clever magic. It’s got suspense, wonder, and lots of heart. I had tons of fun reading this sweet novel, and will certainly be continuing the series.

9. Gender Queer

Maia Kobabe; graphic memoir

This powerful memoir is probably the most important book on this list, if I were in the habit of ranking books in terms of social impact. Its exploration of gender and sexuality is bold, empathetic, and informative. It’s a brave call for more kindness and open-mindedness in the world, and I’m so happy to have read it.

8. Call Us What We Carry

Amanda Gorman; poetry

Even if you don’t enjoy poetry, I encourage you to give this a try. Gorman’s writing is brilliant, tackling tough subjects with nuance, optimism, and strength. It’s an optimistic book in lots of ways, as well as an unflinching snapshot of America today. It’s marvelous.

7. Legends and Lattes

Travis Baldree; fantasy

I didn’t know I needed “cozy Dungeons and Dragons” as a genre, but I do now. I need many more books like this one. It’s so entertaining and charming, with lovely characters and a low-stakes story. Reading this feels like you have just curled up in a coffee shop with friends, and it’s excellent.

6. Heartstopper volume 4

Alice Oseman; young adult graphic novel

It was only in creating this list that I remembered I never wrote a review for this one. I planned to do volumes 4 and 5 in one review, but since 5 isn’t out yet, that hasn’t happened. So here’s my mini-review: this book is wonderful. I love the way Charlie and Nick are together, and though this one is definitely sadder than the first three volumes, it’s so important and full of understanding and support. It’s like a hug.

5. What Moves the Dead

T. Kingfisher; supernatural horror

I’ve never had horror in my top ten, but here we are. Because, wow, this novella is incredible! It’s a brilliant retelling of a classic story, but also holds its own. It’s grotesque and unsettling and impossible to put down. The pacing is flawless, and the creepiness is delightful. I seriously loved it so much!

4. A Rover’s Story

Jasmine Warga; middle grade science fiction

There are too many UTTERLY ADORABLE books on this list, so I’m struggling not being repetitive with my adjectives. But seriously, this space adventure is so so so cute! I love the characters, the friendships, the adventure, everything. The two perspectives are woven together perfectly, and the emotions are palpable. It’s a wholesome story full of wonder and connection, and you have to read it.

3. How to Be Perfect

Michael Schur; philosophy

I did not expect to include a philosophy book on this list, but this is such an amazing book! It makes such a complex subject accessible for the layperson, and is actually so entertaining while simultaneously being educational. It doesn’t shy away from the difficulties of life, but also expresses how important it is to try to do the right thing. The audiobook version is excellent, too!

2. A Prayer for the Crown-Shy

Becky Chambers; science fiction

Apparently robots in books are a theme for me, since this and Rover are in the top ten. But how can I not love this sweet story? This book is such a contemplative, compassionate look at two endearing characters interacting with their world, and it feels like a gentle embrace. It’s so lovely.

1. Supernova

Marissa Meyer; young adult science fiction

This concluding volume of an amazing trilogy is such a wild ride, with moving character development, heart-pounding action, and a breathtaking finale. The way everything comes together is so remarkable, and the themes are really strong. I love these characters so much, and I will definitely reread this trilogy someday.

And that’s all she read!

Well, not really. I read way more than ten books. In fact, here are some honorable mentions: Calling for a Blanket Dance, Wild is the Witch, Sea of Tranquility, Sir Callie, Love & Other Disasters, When Women Were Dragons, and Hazel Hill.

This year, I finished reading 108 books (not counting two books I began and never finished for varying reasons, and a couple rereads). Most of them were print or digital, with only five being audio — which is embarrassing considering how many audiobooks I acquired this year, and especially since one of my goals was to do at least one audiobook a month! Oh, well, I’ll try to do better in 2023.

On that note, I also want to set many reading goals, but considering I didn’t even manage the audiobook one this year, that might not be realistic. At the very least, I want to keep reading tons, from fiction to nonfiction, audiobook/digital to physical. I don’t think any of this will be a problem, of course.

In terms of more tangible goals, I think the only one I dare to make is this promise to myself: In 2023, I will read more V. E. Schwab and Brandon Sanderson!

Beyond that, there are so many books to look forward to in 2023, both new and old, and I can’t wait to get started!

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