This book review favorites list was written by Gail Ruester from our Bainbridge Branch. Find all Staff Book Reviews here.
There are 427 titles on the 100 Book Challenge list, and I thought it would be easy to narrow down my top 10 favorites. It was NOT easy. However, after much deliberation, these are what I chose:
Nonfiction – “In the Kingdom of Ice” (Hampton Sides) I read this book with an afghan on my lap and a cup of hot tea in my hands. The 1879 voyage of George De Long into Arctic waters was anything but a Holland America cruise to Alaska.
Historical Fiction – “News of the World” (Paulette Jiles) A good mix of suspense and feel-good emotions. I couldn’t help but love 10-year-old Johanna. Look for the movie starring Tom Hanks coming out December 2020.
Classic – “To Kill a Mockingbird” (Harper Lee) I am ashamed to admit I had never read this book until this year. I can understand why it won “The Great American Read” in 2018.
Young Adult – “Code Name Verity” (Elizabeth Wein) This didn’t feel like a YA book. Intrigue, mystery, a surprise ending (for me, anyway) – there was never a dull moment in this book.
Mystery – “Irish Sports Pages” (Les Roberts) It was fun to read about streets and neighborhoods in Cleveland. I was reading this book shortly after a trip to the Cleveland Clinic and I thought, “I was just down that road!”
Biography – “Becoming” (Michelle Obama) Whatever your political bent, it is interesting to read about the lives of former first ladies. She came from a multi-generational home on Chicago’s south side and ended up drinking tea on the balcony of the White House. You’d never believe what the Secret Service had to do to make THAT happen!
Graphic Novel – “Hey, Kiddo” (Jarrett Krosoczka) This was an entertaining audio book, with sound effects and different voices. It is a true story, and although it can be heart breaking in certain places, Jarrett went on to be a very successful children’s author and illustrator.
Fiction – “Left Neglected” (Lisa Genova) No, this is not about an abandoned child. I am drawn to medical stories and this one drew me in from the beginning.
Fantasy – “Garden Spells” (Sarah Addison Allen) Just a light-hearted, fun and easy read.
Thriller – “The Other Typist” (Suzanne Rindell) The ending can mean different things to different people. I was on the edge of my seat reading this book, and I’m still not sure who did it…..
There are many runners-up to my list (The Boys in the Boat, The Wonder, Fever, Travels with Charley, to name a few). If you are interested in beginning the 100 Book Challenge, visit your local library branch or sign up on our website under “Ask Us Online”.
Gail is currently reading “Miracle Creek” by Angie Kim