Reflection is always a good thing. It helps you understand where you’ve been, what you’ve done, and where you’re going.
Looking back at a decade of reading, one thing was clear to me – if left to my own devices, I read very narrowly in just a few genres (children’s fiction, cookbooks, history, and mystery/suspense). When I assembled the list below of my “Best Books of the Decade,” I realized that many of these titles were sent my way by other people; they were *not* titles that I picked up on my own. This shows the power of being part of a reading community where you expose yourself to books you might otherwise never find.
There are many types of reading communities – book clubs where you gather with a group to discuss a particular book; online communities like Litsy, Goodreads, and LibraryThing; Book of the Month where you subscribe and receive a new set of books each month; and my favorite – your local library, where you can usually find someone who will happily discuss and recommend books.
Here are the books that resonated with me over the last 10 years. Perhaps you’ll find something interesting!
My Antonia by Willa Cather
Distant Hours by Kate Morton
Night Circus by Erin Morgernstern
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
The Hum and the Shiver by Alex Bledsoe (and here’s a music video inspired by the book by the Tuatha Dea)
Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh
Aristotle & Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz
Something Red by Douglas Nicholas
Where’d You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple
The Darkling Bride by Laura Anderson
The Unforgettable Guinevere St. Clair by Amy Makechnie
Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth Hogan
Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware
Circe by Madeline Miller
Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik
Florida by Lauren Groff
Whiskey When We’re Dry by John Larison
Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield
Virgil Wander by Leif Enger
Cursed by Thomas Wheeler
The World That We Knew by Alice Hoffman
Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates
Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead
The Guinevere Deception by Kiersten White
Family Upstairs by Lisa Jewell
Inland by Tea Obrecht
My intent for the next few years is to read more widely – more non-fiction and more world authors.