What I’m Reading (2019)

One of the occupational hazards of being an English professor (or grad student) is losing the ability or the interest in pleasure reading. We have so much to read as part of our jobs, not just novels and poems or plays, but criticism, essays, memos, emails . . . the act of reading becomes all about work. I have always loved to read, but a while back, I realized that I wasn’t doing it much anymore, only on planes or breaks from school. From then on, I decided to make it a point to read “for fun” every day, even if only for a few minutes before I go to sleep. I’m frequently asked for book recommendations, so a few years ago, I thought I’d start to keep a list. Titles below are books I have read or listened to since January 1, 2019. Asterisks for my most favorite. Links are Amazon affiliate.

The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet (David Mitchell, audiobook)

Rosewater (Tade Thompson, audiobook)

Space Opera (Catherynne M. Valente)

The Feral Detective (Jonathan Lethem, audiobook)

Elevation (Stephen King)

Motherless Brooklyn (Jonathan Lethem)

Red War (Kyle Mills as Vince Flynn)

The Boy on the Bridge (M. R. Carey, audio)

Fellside (M. R. Carey, audio)

The Witch Elm  (Tana French, audio)*

Census (Jesse Ball)

The Water Cure (Sophie Mackintosh, audiobook)

Freefall (Jessica Barry)

Finding Ultra (Rich Roll)

Lone Survivor (Marcus Luttrell)

Can’t Hurt Me (David Goggins, audiobook)*

American Sniper (Chris Kyle)

Where Men Win Glory (Jon Krakauer, audiobook)

The Dreamers (Karen Thompson Walker, audiobook)

Salvage the Bones (Jesmyn Ward)

Gnomon (Nick Harkaway, audiobook)

Golden State (Ben Winters, audiobook)

Cemetery Road (Greg Iles, audiobook)

Optic Nerve  (Maria Gainza)

Blood on Snow (Jo Nesbø)

Children of Ruin (Adrian Tchaikovsky, audiobook)

A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World (C. A. Fletcher)

Testimony (Scott Turow)

Ordinary Heroes (Scott Turow)

Blood On Snow (Jo Nesbo)

The Last (Hannah Jameson, audiobook)*

The Lost Man (Jane Harper, audiobook)

Rage Against the Dying (Becky Masterman, audiobook)

Fear the Darkness (Becky Masterman, audiobook)

A Twist of the Knife (Becky Masterman, audiobook)

The Red Birds (Mohammed Hanif)

Swann’s Way (Marcel Proust)

We Were Killers Once (Becky Masterman, audiobook)

The Never Game (Jeffrey Deaver, audiobook)

The Nickel Boys (Colson Whitehead)

This Is How You Lose the Time War (Amal El-Mohtar & Max Gladstone)

The Dark Half (Stephen King)

On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous (Ocean Vuong)*

The Other Americans (Laila Lalami)

The Descent (Tim Johnston)

Knife (Jo Nesbo, audiobook)

The Dog Stars (Peter Heller, audiobook)

The River (Peter Heller, audiobook) 

The Scholar (Dervla McTiernan)

The Sisters (Dervla McTiernan, audiobook–FREE IN SEPT)

Level Five (William Ledbetter)

Kindred (Octavia Butler)

The Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI (David Grann)

My Sister the Serial Killer (Oyinkan Braithwaite)

The Chain (Adrian McKinty)

The Mothers (Britt Bennett)

Mostly Dead Things (Kristen Arnett)

Dare to Lead (Brene Brown)

The Shallows (Matt Goldman, audiobook)

Night Man (Brett Battles)

The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair (Joel Dicker, audiobook)

Backlash (Brad Thor, audiobook)

Dark Sacred Night (Michael Connelly, audiobook)

Spymaster (Brad Thor, audiobook)

From a Low and Quiet Sea (Donal Ryan, audiobook)

The Reckoning (John Grisham, audiobook)

10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World (Elif Shafak, audiobook)

Supernova Era (Cixin Liu, audiobook)

The Starless Sea (Erin Morgenstern)

Trust Exercise (Susan Choi, audiobook)

Find Me (Laura van den Berg, reread)

The Gone World (Tom Sweterlitsch, audiobook)*

The Night Fire (Michael Connelly, audiobook)

The Department of Speculation (Jenny Offill)

10:04 (Ben Lerner)

The Topeka School (Ben Lerner)

Normal People (Sally Rooney, audiobook)*

Daisy Jones and the Six (Taylor Jenkins Reid, audiobook)