What I Read in 2018

The Girl from VeniceEducated: A MemoirWarlight: A novel
This was a remarkable reading year for a couple of reasons. As of March 1, I was officially retired. While most would think that would allow for endless reading, instead I feared I’d lose all the luscious listening to books on my daily commute. Who can justify taking two hours out of day to simply read unless you were trapped in a car or train. I couldn’t imagine it.
And yet, and yet, I managed copious reading thanks to lots more recreational travel. Books make long flights disappear and make swift work of daily errands. They also turn sleepless nights into silent, undercover book binges. And yes, there are even moments when I allow a lazy daylight hour lost to reading something other than the latest news of political insanity.
This is also the first year that I switched from writing down all my books in my beloved Moleskine notebook that’s always stashed in my car.  With all the different modes and locales of reading, my Moleskine simply wasn’t always convenient when one book ended and another began. So, I began listing my books in the Notes app on my phone and ipad. And much to my year’s end delight, it took only moments to copy and paste most of this year’s reading into my annual review. Which is why I am posting before 2018 surrenders.
Now to the books.  My favorites are in bold as you might expect. There’s also a list of abandoned books at the end as I felt liberated (not ashamed) to banish a book midway that just didn’t please or excite me. But it might suit you.
Orphan Train. Kristina Kline
Lilac Girls. Martha Kelly
Woman in Cabin 10. Ruth Ware
The Girl from Venice. Martin Cruz Smith
Big Magic. Melissa Gilbert
Janesville. Amy Goldstein
Hannah Who Fell From the Sky. Christopher Meade
You Don’t Look Your Age and Other Fairy Tales. Sheila Nevins
Our Souls at Night. Kent Haruf (gorgeous, spare writing)
Exposed. Lisa Scottoline (road trip entertainment from NYC to Charlotte!)
My Brilliant Friend. Elena Ferrante (even better on TV)
Girl From Venice. Martin Cruz Smith
Little Fires Everywhere. Celeste Ng
The Other Woman. Daniel Silva
Educated. Tara Westover (mind blowing memoir)
Lab girl.  Hope Jahren (ditto)
An American Marriage. Tayari Jones
Sing Unburied Sing.  Jessamyn West
Born a crime. Trevor Noah (unputdownable)
Beneath a Scarlet Sky. Mark Sullivan
Warlight.  Michael Ondaage (mysterious, beautiful story by a master)
Winter Garden.  Kristin Hannah
There there. Tommy Orange (brilliant new voice)
Elinor Oliphant Is Perfectly Fine. Gail Honeyman
Autumn. Ali Smith

Everything That Rises Must Converge. Flannery O’Connor
Beyond the Beautiful Forevers. Kathryn Boo
Among the Lesser Gods.   Margo Catts
Transit. Rachel Cusk
Rosie effect. Graeme Simsion

Happy reading. And Happy New Year!


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