2018 Reading Year in Review


2018 brought many changes into my life, but my reading habits remained intact. I reread many of my favorites including most of Robin Hobb’s fantasy works and some of Elizabeth Peter’s Peabody Mysteries. I also participated in Book Riot’s Read Harder Challenge again. My choices for the challenges are listed below. I saved the best for last and read The Velveteen Rabbit to my daughter. I anticipate enjoying more books together and more trips to the library with her next year.

An Essay Anthology

Shrill: Notes from a Loud WomanShrill: Notes from a Loud Woman by Lindy West
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Journalist Lindy West writes with humor and veracity about life as a large, opinionated woman, her battles with comedians over rape jokes, and love and friendship. She ends on a fascinating account of her confrontation with one of the internet trolls who made it his mission to harass and humiliate her online.

A Book of True Crime

Too Politically SensitiveToo Politically Sensitive by Michale Callahan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Set in Paris, Illinois, a few hours from my hometown, retired state trooper Michale Callahan lays out the evidence for the murders of Dyke and Karen Rhoads, the wrongful convictions of two men, and a coverup by law enforcement.

A Book Published Posthumously

A Book of Genre Fiction in Translation

The Girl in the Spider's Web (Millennium, #4)The Girl in the Spider's Web by David Lagercrantz
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is the fourth book in the Millennium Series. The first three were published posthumously by Stieg Larsson and the subsequent books continued with author David Lagercrantz. The antisocial, genius hacker Lisbeth Salander and the charismatic journalist Mikael Blomkvist pair together again to expose dangerous murders and cybercriminals.

A Comic Written and Illustrated by the Same Person

A Comic Written or Illustrated by a Person of Color

A Comic That Isn’t Published by Marvel, Dc, or Image

A One-Sitting Book

Malice in Ovenland: Vol. 1Malice in Ovenland: Vol. 1 by Micheline Hess
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Lily Brown enters the magical, strange, and greasy world lurking in her mother’s oven.

A Book of Colonial or Postcolonial Literature

An Assigned Book You Hated (Or Never Finished)

Heart of DarknessHeart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Steamboat captain Charles Marlow travels into the Congo to find the missing and mad European trader Kurtz.

A Classic of Genre Fiction (I.E. Mystery, Sci Fi/Fantasy, Romance)

Foundation (Foundation, #1)Foundation by Isaac Asimov
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Through the study of psychohistory, researchers discover that the Galactic Empire will fall leaving its pieces in a dark age of ignorance and warfare that will last thirty thousand years. To save humanity, they create the Foundation.

A Book of Social Science

Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and WorstBehave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst by Robert M. Sapolsky
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Author Robert Sapolsky demonstrates how genetics, hormones, environments, parents, and societies work together in a complex fashion we are only just now understanding to determine why we behave the way we do.

A Sci Fi Novel with a Female Protagonist by a Female Author

The Stars Are LegionThe Stars Are Legion by Kameron Hurley
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

An all female populated legion of ships travels the universe under constant warfare. Zan wakes up with no memories but is told she is their salvation.

A Book About Nature

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power: Your Action Handbook to Learn the Science, Find Your Voice, and Help Solve the Climate CrisisAn Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power: Your Action Handbook to Learn the Science, Find Your Voice, and Help Solve the Climate Crisis by Al Gore
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A follow up to Al Gore’s book An Inconvenient Truth with a practical guide for getting involved with climate change politics.

The First Book in a New-To-You YA or Middle Grade Series

The Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air, #1)The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Two human girls struggle to grow up and find their place in the violent court of the fairy realm.

A Celebrity Memoir

The Princess DiaristThe Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Carrie Fisher publishes excerpts from the diary she kept during the filming of Star Wars and recounts her affair with Harrison Ford.

A Book with a Cover You Hate

What HappenedWhat Happened by Hillary Rodham Clinton
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Hillary Clinton shares tales from the campaign road and provides her arguments and insights into what went wrong with the 2016 election.

A Romance Novel by or About a Person of Color

An Oprah Book Club Selection

Love in the Time of CholeraLove in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel García Márquez
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

A story of unrequited love.

A Book with a Female Protagonist over the Age of 60

The Autobiography of Miss Jane PittmanThe Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman by Ernest J. Gaines
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A fictional account of Jane Pittman, a woman who lived over a hundred years through slavery and civil rights, love and heartache.

A Mystery by a Person of Color or LGBTQ+ Author

The Last Place You Look (Roxane Weary, #1)The Last Place You Look by Kristen Lepionka
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

PI Roxane Wary is hired to look into the death row case of Brad Stockton, convicted of murdering his missing girlfriend’s parents.

A Western

EpitaphEpitaph by Mary Doria Russell
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A fictional account of the gunfight at O.K. Corral.

A Book Set in or About One of the Five Brics Countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China, or South Africa)

ShantaramShantaram by Gregory David Roberts
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

An epic novel and semi-autobiographical account of Gregory Roberts’s life set in the criminal underworld of Bombay.

A Children’s Classic Published Before 1980

The Velveteen RabbitThe Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A classic story of how toys become real.

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