Today is the last day of 2022 and I’ve read all that I can read.
In total, I’ve read 63 books this year, but I didn’t love a lot of them. Here’s a list of all the books I rated 5 stars!
1. Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll
The main character, Ani, has a great job and has recently gotten engaged. By all standards, her life seems great. And then a layer a peeled back. She’s agreed to be interviewed about a very traumatic time in her life for a documentary. Every chapter is a layer pulled back and the story is more enticing. I finished this book in two days it was so good – and very unexpected.
2. Funny Farm: My Unexpected Life with 600 Rescue Animals by Laurie Zaleski
Laurie tells the story of her life and how she came to run an animal rescue in New Jersey called the Funny farm. It all started when her mother left her father, dragging all three kids with her. Her mother didn’t have a job or a plan, but she found a dilapidated house for them to rent. They didn’t have it easy, but her mother made a life and put food on the table. Over time, her mother started taking in animals. Laurie recounts the past and also tells stories about the animals on her own farm as an adult.
3. Unmasked: My Life Solving America’s Cold Cases by Paul Holes
Zack and I listened to this one in the car ride to Wisconsin. I got really into it and think it’s a great recount of Holes career. And it’s great to hear him tell his own story. He is the criminal investigator who worked on solving the East Area Rapist/Golden State Killer case. It’s really great if you’re interested in true crime.
4. The Nineties by Chuck Klosterman
Very good. This summer I watched a docu-series about the 90s, so this book is right on par for learning a little bit more. While I grew up in the 90s, I definitely wasn’t aware of many of these events. I was too young. It was nice to have this frame of reference when trying to place myself within the framework of the cultural events.
5. The Courage to Be Disliked: How to Free Yourself, Change your Life and Achieve Real Happiness by Ichiro Kishimi
Sometimes a book comes into your life at the precise moment that you need it. For me, this is one of those books. I thought that Burnout, The Power of Now or The Power of Regret were going to help me or give me some insight, but, even though I liked reading them, they didn’t help me or give me what I was looking for. It reads as a dialogue between a wise philosopher and a young student in which the ideas of Alfred Adler are explained using many examples.
6. Counterfeit by Kirstin Chen
This is the story of two Asian American women who band together to grow a counterfeit handbag scheme into a global enterprise–an incisive and glittering blend of fashion, crime, and friendship.
7. The Reading List by Sara Nisha Adams
As an avid reader, I loved this book. The story navigates between a widower, Mukesh, who is trying to find a way to connect with his granddaughter and the younger Aleisha, who works at the local library. His wife loved reading, but he himself has never picked up a book. He heads to the library and meets Aleisha at the front desk. When Mukesh asks for a book recommendation she is rather rude since she doesn’t read either. She soon finds a list of random book titles. Wanting to be more helpful to the patrons, she begins reading the books, one-by-one, to see if the books are good enough to recommend to Mukesh. The story goes through several books as they both read and discuss the books. They both discover a love for reading and a friendship grows!
8. Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn
I watched the HBO limited series before I knew it was a book. I liked the series and enough time has passed since I watched it that I thought it’d be good to read it. I love the entire cast. If you haven’t read anything by Flynn before, add it to your list!
9. The Guncle by Steven Rowley
This book is an absolute recommended read! I would love for this book to become a movie as soon as possible. The gay uncle is a former actor who has exited his career to live a private life in Palm Springs. His brother’s wife passes away and his brother tells him that he needs to go to rehab… and he’s leaving his children with him. The heartfelt story is where he teaches his niece and nephew how to deal with grief, but he also opens his own heart. I ugly cried at the end. It was so beautiful!
10. The Night She Disappeared by Lisa Jewell
The Night She Disappeared has multiple points of views from three different people. In 2017, Tallulah disappears. She’s a 19 year old college student who lives with her mother, her baby boy and the boys father, Zach. The night begins with Lula and Zach on a date. Their dinner is interrupted by Scarlett, Lula’s new friend from school. They couple heads to Scarlett’s home after dinner and are never to be seen again.
Sophie and her boyfriend have just moved into the cottage on the same property of the college that Lula attended. The boyfriend accepted a position as head-teacher. Sophie is a mystery novel author. She steps out into the garden one morning and discovers a sign that says “dig here.” And so she pushes forward discovering the mystery of the two missing teenagers.
11. All Her Little Secrets by Wanda M. Morris
Ellice Littlejohn is an educated corporate attorney working for Houghton Transportation in Atlanta, GA. She’s the only black attorney in the office and she’s been having an affair with her married boss, Michael, for several years.
Michael asks Ellice to meet early in the morning in his office, but she finds him dead in his office when she arrives. Instead of contacting authorities, she closes the door and goes back to her own office. And then the secrets start to unravel! Ellice has tried so hard to distance from her rural past, but now she has to go back to her roots when the detective starts asking questions.
What’s on your reading list? Let me know in the comments below!