This is the first time in a long time that I did not struggle to create this list. Upon reviewing my 2022 reads, I discovered that I was quite frugal when it came to awarding 5 stars this year. Click on the picture to see availability if you are interested in any of these.
My non-fiction 5 star reads are no surprise-I love a true crime story! I was surprised to find two poetry books and a romance on my list! My ready adventures also included relistening to the first three books in the Skulduggery Pleasant series by Derek Landy (always 5 stars from me!), devouring more volumes of Phoebe and Her Unicorn by Dana Simpson (if you grew up with Calvin & Hobbes, these are must reads!), and breezing through dozens of thrillers.
As 2022 comes to a close, it’s clear that there is no shortage of good books to read these days! In no particular order and with no rhyme or reason, here are the ten books that I enjoyed most this year.
Tress Montor murdered Felicity Turnado–but she might not have to live with the guilt for long. With an infected arm, the panther who clawed her open on the loose, and the whole town on the hunt for the lost homecoming queen, the odds are stacked against Tress.
Six friends. One college reunion. One unsolved murder. Ten years after graduation, Jessica Miller has planned her triumphant return to her southern, elite Duquette University, down to the envious whispers that are sure to follow in her wake.
Eighteen-year-old Daunis Fontaine has never quite fit in, both in her hometown and on the nearby Ojibwe reservation. Everything comes to light when Daunis witnesses a shocking murder, thrusting her into an FBI investigation of a lethal new drug.
Chrysta Bilton’s magnetic, larger-than-life mother, Debra, yearned to have a child, but as a single gay woman in 1980s California, she had few options. Until one day, she met a man and instantly knew he was the one she’d been looking for.
1978: At her renowned treatment center in picturesque Vermont, the brilliant psychiatrist, Dr. Helen Hildreth, is acclaimed for her compassionate work with the mentally ill. When she brings home Iris, she does not behave like a normal girl.
A heartbreaking and hilarious memoir by iCarly star Jennette McCurdy about her struggles as a former child actor–including eating disorders, addiction, and a complicated relationship with her overbearing mother–and how she retook control of her life.
Growing up I was a major Nancy Drew fan. I read all the books, played all the video games, and generally tried to become an amateur sleuth. Now that I’m an adult, I still love tales of mystery and hijinks. So when The Inheritance Games began making the rounds on Bookstagram, I snapped it right up.
Avery Grambs is a 17 year old who is just hoping to finish high school. When she’s called to the principal’s office one day, she’s met by a man in a sharp silver suit who is the bearer of puzzling news. Billionaire Tobias Hawthorne has died and Avery has been named in the will. The only catch? Avery has never heard of Tobias Hawthorne.
So begins Avery’s entry into the world of the rich and famous. Hawthorne House is filled with secret passageways, one of a kind antiques, and enigmatic occupants. The four Hawthorne grandsons Nash, Grayson, Jameson, and Xander are just as curious to find out why Avery has been named in their grandfather’s will. They’re even more curious when it’s announced that Avery is primary beneficiary. As Avery tries to get used to life as a billionaire, she finds clues that old Tobias Hawthorne has one last game to play- and she’s at the center of it.
Who killed Brooke Donovan? It’s the biggest mystery of the summer, and everyone in Castle Cove thinks it’s the wrong guy. Fans of One of Us Is Lying and Riverdale can’t miss this page-turning who-done-it that’s sure to be the next must read Young Adult thriller!
Last summer, Alice Ogilvie’s basketball-star boyfriend Steve dumped her. Then she disappeared for five days. She’s not talking, so where she went and what happened to her is the biggest mystery in Castle Cove. Or it was, at least. But now, another one of Steve’s girlfriends has vanished: Brooke Donovan, Alice’s ex-best friend. And it doesn’t look like Brooke will be coming back. . . Enter Iris Adams, Alice’s tutor. Iris has her own reasons for wanting to disappear, though unlike Alice, she doesn’t have the money or the means. That could be changed by the hefty reward Brooke’s grandmother is offering to anyone who can share information about her granddaughter’s whereabouts. The police are convinced Steve is the culprit, but Alice isn’t so sure, and with Iris on her side, she just might be able to prove her theory. In order to get the reward and prove Steve’s innocence, they need to figure out who killed Brooke Donovan. And luckily Alice has exactly what they need–the complete works of Agatha Christie. If there’s anyone that can teach the girls how to solve a mystery it’s the master herself. But the town of Castle Cove holds many secrets, and Alice and Iris have no idea how much danger they’re about to walk into.
Two Truths and A Lie by April Henry
A group of teens are trapped in an old motel with a murderer in this chilling YA mystery by New York Times bestselling author April Henry.
Nell has always wanted to be an actor, but doubts her ability. As a member of her school’s theater program, she prefers working backstage. On the way to a contest, an unexpected blizzard strands her acting troupe in a creepy motel. Soon they meet a group of strangers from another high school–including the mysterious and handsome Knox, who insists they play the game Two Truths and a Lie. When it’s Nell’s turn, she draws a slip of paper inked in unfamiliar handwriting: I like to watch people die. I’ve lost count of how many people I’ve killed. Suddenly a night of harmless fun turns into a matter of life and death. As guests go missing, it becomes clear that a murderer is hiding in their midst ready to strike again. In a room full of liars and performers, the truth is never quite what it seems. Nell is going to have to act like her life depends on it–because it does.
From New York Times bestselling author Jessica Goodman comes a twisty new thriller about three best friends, one elite summer camp, and the dark secrets that lead to a body in the lake.
Camp Alpine Lake is the only place where Goldie Easton feels safe. She’s always had a special connection to the place, even before she was old enough to attend. The camp is the lifeline of Roxwood, the small town she lives in. Alpine Lake provides jobs, money and prestige to the region. Few Roxwood locals, though, get to reap the rewards of living so close to the glam summer that camp, with its five-figure tuition and rich kids who have been dumped there for eight weeks by their powerful parents. Goldie’s one of them. Even with her “townie” background, Goldie has never felt more at home at camp and now she’s back as a counselor, desperate for summer to start and her best friends, Ava and Imogen, to arrive. Because Goldie has a terrible dark secret she’s been keeping and she is more in need of the comfort than ever. But Goldie’s not the only person at camp who has been lying. When a teen turns up dead in the lake late one night, she knows that the death couldn’t have been an accident. She also knows that Ava was at the lake that same night. What did Ava see and what does she know? Why hasn’t she said anything to Goldie about the death? Worse–what did Ava do? But asking questions offers no answers, only broken bonds of lifelong friendship, with hidden danger and betrayals deeper than Goldie ever imagined.
YA mystery lovers are in for a fantastic summer of reading!