I’m not sure what compelled me to start publishing the list of all the books I read in the year, but I’ve been doing it a couple of years in a row. Since three makes a trend, here’s my third annual list.
I gotta start with Homegoing. This is literally one of the best books I’ve read in a few years. It is super compelling, very touching, enthrallingly written and weaves a complex story in a very satisfying way.
Looking back at this list, some of the standouts were the truly excellent Half a Yellow Sun; Sea of Tranquility, which I finished and re-read almost immediately to better understand all the nuances (which I’d never done before); Finding the Mother Tree was something I’d been meaning to read for a while and it was beautifully written and an important subject; Namwayut was a book by Chief Robert Joseph, whom I’ve known a little for many years and found his telling of his story to be powerfully written and deeply moving.
VanBikes was written by my friend Colin, and I’m so proud of him for telling this story which he’s been working on for so many years—it came together beautifully. Run Towards the Danger has stayed with me and still feels very present. Invisible Boy was an amazing insight into a situation I know nothing about and is extremely compelling. Finally, I’ve been an Elvis Costello fan since I was a teenager, so I don’t know why it took me so long to read his memoir, Unfaithful Music & Disappearing Ink. As I write this I’m about half-way through and am enjoying it a lot.
Here’s my list of books I read in 2022 in the order I read them:
- Indigenous Relations — Bob Joseph & Cynthia F. Joseph
- Under a White Sky — Elizabeth Kolbert
- Life in the City of Dirty Water — Clayton Thomas-Müller
- Half of a Yellow Sun — Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
- Factfulness — Hans Rosling, Anna Rosling Rönnlund & Oka Rosling
- Homegoing — Yaa Gyasi
- The 1619 Project — Nikole Hannah-Jones
- How the Word is Passed — Clint Smith
- The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time — Mark Haddon
- The Sixth Extinction — Elizabeth Kolbert
- Caste — Isabel Wilkerson
- State of Terror — Hillary Clinton & Louise Penny
- Stolen Focus — Johann Hari
- Heart of Darkness — Joseph Conrad
- How to be Perfect — Michael Schur
- Finding the Mother Tree — Suzanne Simard
- Americanah — Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
- The Comedians — Kliph Nesteroff
- Sing Backwards and Weep — Mark Lanegan
- Underground Airlines — Ben H. Winters
- Transcendent Kingdom — Yaa Gyasi
- Origin — Jennifer Raff
- Entangled Life — Merlin Sheldrake
- Big Lonely Doug — Harley Rustad
- Fundamentals — Frank Wilczek
- The Islander — Chris Blackwell
- Ragged Company — Richard Wagamese
- Paris 1919 — Margaret MacMillan
- Sea of Tranquility — Emily St. John Mandel
- Lonely Boy — Steve Jones
- Sea of Tranquility — Emily St. John Mandel (I had to read it again immediately to fully appreciate it)
- Vanishing Half — Brit Bennett
- The Glass Hotel — Emily St. John Mandel
- Station Eleven — Emily St. John Mandel
- Quiet — Susan Cain
- Subdivided — Jay Pitter & John Lorinc
- The Netanyahus —Joshua Cohen
- The Midnight Library — Matt Haig
- How to Be Animal — Melanie Challenger
- Nasty, Brutish, and Short — Scott Hershovitz
- Namwayut — Chief Robert Joseph
- The Last White Man — Mohsin Hamid
- Humble Pi — Matt Parker
- Monkey Beach — Eden Robinson
- Too Dumb for Democracy? — David Moscrop
- Vanbikes — Colin Stein
- Profiles in Ignorance — Andy Borowitz
- Run Towards the Danger — Sarah Polley
- True Reconciliation — Jody Wilson-Raybould
- Surrender — Bono
- Invisible Boy — Harrison Mooney
- Unfaithful Music & Disappearing Ink — Elvis Costello
I’m looking forward to all the books to read in 2023!
Great list! Some I’ve read, many I haven’t and will add them to the list. My fave book of 2022 was Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow, by Gabrielle Zevin. Highly recommend. Happy New Year.
Hi Alison! Thanks for that reco, it’s now on my list!
Great list, William. I also read the two titles you mentioned from the very gifted Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. I really enjoyed Station Eleven when I read it years ago and would like to get my hands on Sea of Tranquility. I picked up he Last White Man when I heard Eleanor Wachtel interviewing Mohsin Hamid on the radio. I’ll bookmark this page for the day when I am without something to read. I like your taste in books!
Thanks Alan! Anything you read this past year you recommend for me to read in 2023?