The Books of 2023

So many books, so little time—part 17.

My son started keeping a reading list in third grade, so I did too. This is the 17th year we’ve done this.

Work and well, life in general kept me pretty busy, but I still managed to read a LOT, and listened to a number of audiobooks as well.

This is How it Always is by Laurie Frankel

My favorite books this year were Tom Lake, by Ann Patchett (a beautiful story about a mother telling her daughters the story of a long ago summer romance), Klara and the Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro (a futuristic novel that brings in elements of AI and its possible role in our futures), Hello Beautiful by Ann Napolitano (a moving story about the bonds of family), Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt (a book club pick about a widow and an octopus that I was sure I’d hate, but ended up loving), Foreverland: On the Divine Tedium of Marriage by Heather Havilresky (the only nonfiction pick on my list of favorites, this is a series of essays about, you guessed, marriage),

Nothing to See Here by Kevin Wilson

Yellowface. by R.F. Kuang (a really compelling novel about the world of literature and who gets to tell what stories in the age of cultural appropriation), The Golden Couple by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen (a page turner till the bitter end), Nothing to See Here by Kevin Wilson ( a very original story full of weirdly compelling characters, including a pair of twins who light on fire when they get angry), and This is How it Always is by Laurie Frankel ( a really well done and eye opening story about a family with a transgender child).

I’d love to hear what everyone else enjoyed. Here’s my 2023 list:

Love on the Brain Ali Hazelwood
Less Andrew Sean Greer
The Vibrant Years Sonali Dev
The Lincoln Highway Amor Towles
Rules of Civility Amor Towles
The Half Known Life Pico Iyer
Amanda Wakes Up Alisyn Camerota
When in Rome Sarah Adams
Like a Rolling Stone Jann S. Wenner
Incense and Sensibility Sonali Dev
Perfect Tunes Emily Gould
The Second Season Emily Adrian
The Matzah Ball Jean Meltzer
When Sparks Fly Helena Hunting
A Holly Jolly Diwali Sonya Lalli
Black Girls Must BE Magic Jayne Allen
Remarkably Bright Creatures Shelby Van Pelt
The Sound of Gravel Ruth Wariner
Look Alive Out There Sloane Crosley
The Unspeakable Meghan Daum
Have I Told You This Already? Lauren Graham
Keya Das’s Second Act Sopan Deb
Pride, Prejudice and Other Flavors Sonali Dev
Yours Cheerfully A.J. Pearce
The Invitation Lucy Foley
The Candid Life of Meena Dave Namrata Patel
The Power Naomi Alderman
Dear Mrs. Bird AJ Pearce
The Flatshare Beth O’Leary
Klara and the Sun Kazuo Ishiguro
The People We Keep Alison Larkin
This is How it Always Is Laurie Frankel
What’s the Matter with Mary Jane? Candas Jane Dorsey
Cult Classic Sloane Crosley
Crying in H Mart Michelle Zaunder
Something She’s Not Telling Us Darcey Bell
Spare Prince Harry
Forget Me Not Ellie Terry
Nothing to See Here Kevin Wilson
Big Magic Elizabeth Gilbert
Unmarriageable Soniah Kamal
The Four Winds Kristin Hannah
Serena Singh Flips the Script Sonya Lalli
The Last Bookshop in London Madeline Martin
Mika in Real Life Emiko Jean
The Ex Hex Erin Sterling
Little Lovely Things Maureen Joyce Connolly
The Younger Wife Sally Hepworth
The Good Girl Complex Elle Kennedy
Tokyo Ever After Emiko Jean
Commitment Mona Simpson
The Suite Spot Trish Doller
Dear Edward Ann Napolitano
I’ll Be You Janelle Brown
Romantic Comedy Curtis Sittenfeld
The Book of the Most Precious Substance Sara Gran
Really Good, Actually Monica Heisey
The Golden Couple Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen
Cassandra in Reverse Holly Smale
The Storyteller Dave Grohl
Yellowface R.F. Kuang
Fathers and Sons Ivan Turgenev
Where you See Yourself Claire Forrest
The Off Limits Rule Sarah Adams
For Her Consideration Amy Spalding
If He Had Been With Me Laura Nowlin
The Secret Life of Albert Entwistle Matt Cain
This Story Will Change Elizabeth Crane
The Birthday Girls Pauline Lawless
Hot to Trot M.C. Beaton
After I Do Taylor Jenkins Reid
Bookish People Susan Coll
On the Rooftop Margaret Wilkerson Sexton
The Swimmers Julie Otsuka
Wahala Nikki May
Foreverland: On the Divine Tedium of Marriage Heather Havilresky
More Than You’ll Ever Know Katie Gutierrez
Unfortunately Yours Tessa Bailey
For Girls Who Walk Through Fire Kim DeRose
The Diamond Eye Kate Quinn
Early Morning Riser Katherine Heiny
Tom Lake Ann Patchett
The Princess Trap Talia Hibbert
The Incendiaries R.O. Kwon
Hello Beautiful Ann Napolitano
Year of the Monkey Patti Smith
I Have Lost My Way Gayle Forman
The It Girl Ruth Ware
Lucy by the Sea Elizabeth Strout
The Death of Mrs. Westaway Ruth Ware
A Killer App Linda Lovely
The Littlest Library Poppy Alexander
Someone Else’s Shoes JoJo Moyes
Any Other Family Eleanor Brown
High Strung: A Humorous Cozy Mystery (Glass Bead Mystery Series Book 1) Janice Peacock
Pest Elizabeth Foscue
The Wedding Setup Sonali Dev
The Rachel Incident Caroline O’Donoghue
The Woman in Cabin 10 Ruth Ware
I Could Live Here Forever Hanna Halperin
The Arc Tory Henwood Hoen
One by One Ruth Ware
Sadie on a Plate Amanda Ellliot
Maybe Next Time Cesca Major
A Very Inconvenient Scandal Jacquelyn Mitchard

Previous Book Lists

The Books of 2022

The Books of 2021

The Books of 2020

The Books of 2019

The Books of 2018

The Books of 2017

The Books of 2016

The Books of 2015

The Books of 2014

The Books of 2013

The Books of 2012

The Books of 2011

The Books of 2010

The Books of 2009

The Books of 2008

The Books of 2007

The Books of 2015

Fates and Furies coverSo many books, so little time—part nine.

My son started keeping a reading list in third grade, so I did too. This is the ninth year we’ve done this.

My favorite books of 2015 were probably The Goldfinch, by Donna Tartt (which incidentally, won the Pulitzer Prize), Girl on a Train, by Paula Hawkins, and Fates and Furiesby Lauren Groff—all of which are widely-praised fiction, so nothing too original in my suggestions for this year, unfortunately. I don’t read a lot of non-fiction, but I did really enjoy Quiet (about introverts) by Susan Cain and I Am Malala, by Malala Yousafzai.

Anyway, I’d love to hear about other people’s favorite books this year.

2015 Book List
title author first author last
Amber Beach Elizabeth Lowell
Pegasus Danielle Steel
A Grown Up Kind of Pretty Joshilyn Jackson
Love Anthony Lisa Genova
Shopaholic to the Stars Sophie Kinsella
Small Victories Anne Lamott
The Quality of Life Report Megham Daum
The Best of Us Sarah Pekkanen
Delicious Ruth Reichel
Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda: 60 Endings, 2 Happily Ever Afters Tara Lee Reed
The Rosie Project Graeme Simsion
The Heiresses Sara Shepherd
Yes Please Amy Poehler
Sweet Salt Air Barbara Delinsky
Then Came You Jennifer Weiner
The Last Anniversary Liane Moriarty
The Last Letter From Your Lover JoJo Moyes
14 Peter Cline
Night Road Kristin Hannah
Flight Behavior Barbara Kingsolver
Lift Kelly Corrigan
Family Ties Danielle Steel
Lock and Key Sarah Dessen
Littlebee Chris Cleave
The American Heiress Daisy Goodwin
Big Little Lies Liane Moriarty
Spring Fever Mary Kay Andrews
Julie and Romeo: A Novel Jeanne Ray
Let’s Just Say It Wasn’t Pretty Diane Keaton
The Rosie Effect Graeme Simsion
Laura Rider’s Masterpiece Jane Hamilton
Glitter and Glue Kelly Corrigan
Dirty Daddy Bob Sagat
A Tale for the Time Being Ruth Ozeki
The Goldfinch Donna Tartt
Funny Girl Nick Hornby
The Precious One Marisa de los Santos
Wife 22 Melanie Gideon
Summer Island Kristin Hannah
Jane and the Genius of Place Stephanie Barron
Marry Kiss Kill Anne Flett-Giordano
Let’s Explore Diabetes With Owls David Sedaris
Single, Carefree, Mellow Katherine Heiny
The Summer Hideaway Susan Wiggs
Along for the Ride Sarah Dessen
Scandal in Spring Lisa Kleypass
Me Without You JoJo Moyes
The Man Who Loved Books Too Much Allison Hoover Bartlett
All the Light We Cannot See Anthony Doerr
Mine Till Midnight Lisa Kleypass
Pretty Much Screwed Jenna McCarthy
From the Notebooks of a Middle School Princess Meg Cabot
You Won’t Remember This Kate Blackwell
The Nightingale Kristin Hannah
Finding Audrey Sophie Kinsella
The Beginning of Everything Robyn Schneider
The Vacationers Emma Straub
The Girl on the Train Paula Hawkins
This I Believe Various
Life’s a Beach Claire Cook
Blueprints Barbara Delinsky
Breakfast at Tiffany’s Truman Capote
Then Again Diane Keaton
Friends Like Us Lauren Fox
Circle of Wives Alice La Plante
China Rich Girlfriend Kevin Kwan
Smart Blondes Sonia Koso
A Fine Romance Candice Bergen
Mermaid Out of Water Randy Gross
Quiet Susan Cain
A Wonder Story: Pluto R.J. Palacio
The Julian Chapter: A Wonder Story R.J. Palacio
A Window Opens Elisabeth Egan
Luckiest Girl Alive Jessica Knoll
Red Summer Fran Davis
I Am Malala Malala Yousafzai
After You JoJo Moyes
Arcadia Lauren Groff
The Woman I Wanted to Be Diane Van Furstenberg
Crystal Walter Dean Meyers
We Were Liars E. Lockhart
Being Committed Anna Maxted
Dietland Sarai Walker
Cross My Heart Carly Phillips
My Fair Lazy Jen Lancaster
Movie Star A Novel by Lizzie Pepper Hilary Liftin
Everybody Rise Stephanie Clifford
Fates and Furies Lauren Groff
The Bee Cottage Story Frances Schultz
Killing Monica Candace Bushnell
Modern Romance Aziz Ansari
Ladies Night Mary Kay Andrews
Does This Beach Make Me Look Fat? Lisa & Francesca Serratella Scottoline


The Books of 2013

Where'd You Go BernadetteSo many books, so little time—part seven.

My son started keeping a reading list in third grade, so I did too. This is the seventh year we’ve done this.

My favorite book of 2013 was probably Where’d You Go Bernadette, by Maria Semple. I’m not sure how much that had to do with the book itself and how much had to do with my reading it during a lovely spa getaway with my mom at Ojai Valley Inn, but either way I loved it!

Anyway, I’d love to hear about other people’s favorite books this year.

Local Girls Hoffman Alice
Curable Romantic Skibell Joseph
The Casual Vacancy Rowling J.K.
Happily Ever Madder McAfee Stephanie
Moonwalking With Einstein Foer Joshua
The Future of Us Asher Jay & Carolyn Mackler
Escape Delinsky Barbara
Where We Belong Giffin Emily
Meet Me at Emotional Baggage Claim Scottoline Lisa & Francesca Serritella
40 Love Wickham Madeleine
Hannah’s List Macomber Debbie
Perfected by Girls Martino Alfred C.
Happy Birthday Steel Danielle
Grace (Eventually) Thoughts on Faith Lamott Anne
Interpreter of Maladies Lahiri Jumpa
Helen Keller in Love Sultan Rosie
Still Alice Genova Lisa
The Fault in Our Stars Green John
Friendship Bread Gee Darien
Everything We Ever Wanted Shepard Sara
Craft Activism Tapper Joan
The Art of Fielding Harbach Chad
The Ice Queen Hoffman Alice
Firefly Lane Hannah Kristin
Guilt By Association Clark Marcia
Nothing Daunted: The Unexpected Education of Two Society Girls in the West Wickenden Dorothy
The Newlyweds Freudenberger Nell
The House in Amalfi Adler Elizabeth
What Happened to Goodbye Dessen Sarah
Name Dropping Heller Jane
The Penderwicks on Gardam Street Birdsong Jeanne
The Summer of Naked Swim Parties Blau Jessica Anya
The Things We Do For Love Hannah Kristin
More Baths: Less Talking Hornby Nick
This Lullaby Dessen Sarah
Wild Strayed Cheryl
Uncommon Crimminals Carter Ally
Home Again Hannah Kristin
Chocolate Chocolate Moons Kingon Jackie
Gone Girl Flynn Gillian
A Half Life Weiner Jennifer
Recalculating Weiner Jennifer
The Family Tree Cadwalladr Carole
The Blossom Sisters Michaels Fern
Getting the Pretty Back Ringwald Molly
Some Assembly Required Lamott Anne
The Gilly Salt Sisters Baker Tiffany
Life on Hold McQuestion Karen
Summer House Thayer Nancy
Come Home Scottoline Lisa
A Visit From the Goon Squad Egan Jennifer
Pictures of You Leavitt Caroline
Watermelon Keyes Marian
The Obituary Writer Hood Ann
Silver Girl Hilderbrand Elin
The Round House Erdrich Louise
The Princesses of Iowa Backes M. Molly
Where’d You Go Bernadette Semple Maria
The Language of Flowers Diffenbaugh Vanessa
The Castaways Hilderbrand Elin
True Colors Hannah Kristin
Growing Up Amish Wagler Ira
Watch Me Barnholdt Lauren
Help Thanks Wow Lamott Anne
Saving CeeCee Honeycutt Hoffman Beth
The Grace of Crows Shawn Tracy
Sharp Objects Flynn Gillian
Scrap City Gambino Paul
Will Grayson, Will Grayson Green John and David Levithan
Because I Said So Peri Camille and Kate Moses
Fly Away Hannah Kristin
An Abundance of Katherines Green John
Behind the Beautiful Forevers Boo Katherine
The Family Man Lipman Elinor
How To Love Cotugno Kate
Starry Night Macomber Debbie
Dark Witch Roberts Nora
Anastasia Krupnik Lowry Lois
A Summer Affair Hilderbrand Elin
Mrs. Kimble Haigh Jennifer
Christmas Bliss Andrews Mary Kay
Anybody Out There Keyes Marian
Waking Up in the Land of Glitter Cano-Murillo Kathy
Does this church make me look fat? Jantzen Rhoda
Intoxerated: The Definitive Drinker’s Dictionary Dickson Paul

Click to read The Books of 2012.

Click to read The Books of 2011.

Click to read The Books of 2010.

Click to read The Books of 2009.

Click to read The Books of 2008.

Click to read The Books of 2007.