Favorite books read in 2018

Over on Library Twitter, many people identified their favorite books published in 2018 with the hashtag #Libfaves18. I participated as well, but I read many books I loved in 2018 that were published in previous years. Here they are (for reviews, click through to my LibraryThing catalog):

Picture Books

This is a long list, but I read a LOT of picture books this year and there were so many that were excellent. There’s something here for every mood and for every audience, whether it’s one-on-one or a storytime crowd. These books have humor, heart, whimsy, mischief, sweetness, bravery, creativity, and beauty.

Chirri and Chirra by Kaya Doi
The Class by Boni Ashburn
Dear Substitute by Audrey Vernick
A Different Pond by Bao Phi
Flora and the Flamingo by Molly Idle
Flyaway Katie by Polly Dunbar
The Giant Jumperee by Julia Donaldson and Helen Oxenbury
Grumpy Pants by Claire Messer
Hello Hello by Brendan Wenzel
Henry & Leo by Pamela Zagarenski
Hoodwinked by Arthur Howard
Jabari Jumps by Gaia Cornwall
Just Add Glitter by Angela DiTerlizzi
Miss Brooks Loves Books (And I Don’t!) by Barbara Bottner
Puffling by Margaret Wild
Shake A Leg, Egg! by Kurt Cyrus
Sleep Like A Tiger by Mary Logue and Pamela Zagarenski
Sloth at the Zoom by Becker
Sophie’s Squash by Pat Zietlow Miller
Solutions for Cold Feet and Other Little Problems by Carey Sookocheff
The Steves by Morag Hood
The Sun Is Kind Of A Big Deal by Nick Seluk (nonfiction)
There Might Be Lobsters by Carolyn Crimi and Laurel Molk
Tinyville Town Gets to Work by Brian Biggs
Toys Meet Snow by Emily Jenkins and Paul O. Zelinsky
The Wonky Donkey by Craig Smith

Middle Grade

I read less YA than usual this year but way more middle grade, and I love it. The characters are at such an interesting age, when a lot of (often painful) growth happens, relationships change, and they are tackling real problems, often on their own. For realistic fiction, I’m now a devotee of Sharon M. Draper and Lynda Mullaly Hunt; on the magical side of things, I was blown away by Lauren Oliver’s Liesel & Po.

Dear Sister by Alison McGhee
Drama by Raina Telgemeier (also: Smile, Sisters, and Ghosts)
Hunger by Donna Jo Napoli
Illegal by Eoin Colfer, Andrew Donkin, and Giovanni Rigano
It Wasn’t Me by Dana Alison Levy
Liesl and Po by Lauren Oliver
The Marvels by Brian Selznick
The Night Diary by Veera Hiranandani
One for the Murphys and Fish in a Tree by Lynda Mullaly Hunt
Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper
Refugee by Alan Gratz
The Thing About Jellyfish by Ali Benjamin


Fewer titles than usual this year, but still some standouts, and a cluster of stellar realistic romance books.

Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia
Far From the Tree by Robin Benway

Realistic romance: When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon, You Bring the Distant Near by Mitali Perkins, I Have Lost My Way by Gayle Forman, Puddin’ by Julie Murphy (see also: Dumplin;, book and movie), The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things by Carolyn Mackler, Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli

Adult Nonfiction

Some important books here, particularly Evicted, which I read for a Community Reads committee (we didn’t choose it, but not because it isn’t 100% worthwhile; it is). Rebecca Solnit is always worth reading; she’s brilliant, measured, and incisive.

Educated by Tara Westover
Evicted by Matthew Desmond
Call Them By Their True Names by Rebecca Solnit (2018)
I Am, I Am, I Am by Maggie O’Farrell (2018)
When They Call You A Terrorist by Patrisse Khan-Cullors
Women & Power by Mary Beard

Adult Fiction

A lot of speculative fiction this year, but The Great Believers is the one I’ve been recommending to everyone. It is absolutely crushing. 

The Bear and the Nightingale and The Girl in the Tower (first two books of the Winternight trilogy) by Katherine Arden
The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai (2018)
The Fifth Season, The Obelisk Gate, and The Stone Sky (The Broken Earth trilogy) by N.K. Jemisin
Sourdough by Robin Sloan
Stories of Your Life and Others by Ted Chiang
Transcription by Kate Atkinson (2018)
An Unkindness of Ghosts by Rivers Solomon

Favorite Books Read in 2017 (First Half)| Favorite Books Read in 2017 (Second Half) | 2018 Reading Wrap-Up

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