Best Books I Read in Fall 2022 – Reading Recap
This is a relatively new thing I’ve been trying out. I’ve been posting most-anticipated reading lists for the season, with my most looked-forward-to new young adult and middle grade releases and why I’m excited about them. Then at the end of the season, I post a look back at the list following up. How many books from the list did I actually read? Which were my favorites? So. Here we are with a list of the best books I read in fall 2022. Let’s get to it!
How many books from my Most-Anticipated Fall Reading List did I actually read?
I created two separate posts to talk about upcoming fall books, one for middle grade and one for young adult with 37 books total. This time, I managed to read all the books on my most-anticipated lists plus about 15 others that are a combination of last-minute requests or books from earlier in the year that I finally managed to read. Here are a few highlights from those 15.
Victory. Stand!: Raising My Fist for Justice by Tommie Smith, Derrick Barnes, and Dawud Anyabwile
What you need to know: This graphic novel was longlisted for the National Book Award and tells the story of Olympic Medalist Tommie Smith as he lifted a black-gloved fist to protest the treatment of Black athletes in the United States.
Hell Followed with Us by Andrew Joseph White
What you need to know: I’m not usually a horror girl, but so many things about this book hooked me. The post-apocalyptic setting. The escape from a traumatic, abusive cult. Love in the midst of pandemic and disaster. I loved it. Though I was eagerly looking forward to this one, somehow it didn’t make it onto my most-anticipated list.
The Ghosts of Rose Hill by R. M. Romero
What you need to know: This has been a great year for me with reading novels in verse, but this one is my favorite of all. I loved the magical Prague setting. The sweet, slow burn romance. It was all beautiful and fantastic.
Best Books I Read in Fall 2022: Favorites by Familiar Authors
In the last few months, I read 15 books by authors I’d read before. Brigid Kemmerer (9 books) and Courtney Summers (6 books) are the authors I’ve read most. For most of the other authors on the list, I’ve only read one book by them before this fall.
Here are my favorite YA, MG, and nonfiction titles from all the books I read by familiar authors.
The First to Die at the End by Adam Silvera
What you need to know: Honestly, I liked this one even more than THEY BOTH DIE AT THE END. I think it perfectly celebrated its predecessor and brought entirely new ideas and characters into the Death Cast world. This was a total win for me.
The Antiracist Kid by Tiffany Jewell
What you need to know: I think this is the only nonfiction title by a familiar author that I read this fall. I love that this book makes justice and activism accessible to kids. It was a very easy read and very encouraging.
Best Books I Read in Fall 2022: Favorites by a New Author or Author New to Me
The majority of the books that I read this fall were by authors who were new to me. Some of them were debut authors, which is always exciting. You never really know what you’re going to get with a debut, so I feel like when a debut is amazing, it’s all the more awesome to feel like you’ll get to follow that author’s writing right from the beginning.
Some of the authors who are new to me are authors I’ve really wanted to try for a long time. For the first time this fall, I read books by Crystal Maldonado, Justina Ireland, Dean Atta, and Susan Dennard. All of them are authors I’ve heard amazing things about and just hadn’t managed to read yet. My reading list only gets longer the more great authors I discover!
At any rate, here are my favorite books by authors I’d never read before this fall. I chose one each for YA, MG, nonfiction, and backlist books.
The Luminaries by Susan Dennard
What you need to know: I don’t know what I expected going into this book, but I was completely blown away. The forest is creepy and the small community feels so real with its prejudices and complex connections. And… ugh Jay. (I loved Winnie and Jay!)
Braiding Sweetgrass for Young Adults by Robin Wall Kimmerer
What you need to know: I had heard really great things about the adult version of this book, so when I saw that there was a young adult version, I jumped at the chance to read and review it here. I loved the introspective questions, the history and ecology lessons woven together in perfect harmony.
Book that Surprised Me the Most
Reading a lot of new authors gives me a LOT of room to be surprised by a book, and I love that. I do enjoy the security of reading a book by an author I’m familiar with and having a really high likelihood that I’ll enjoy the book. But I also like to gamble and see what other voices are bringing to the book world. This season, I’d say that gambling more than paid off because several books completely blew me away in ways I couldn’t have predicted.
It Looks Like Us by Allison Ames
What you need to know: Did I mention that I’m not usually into horror? I couldn’t get enough of the Antarctic setting. The tenuous friendships disrupted by an alien or infection. Also, there’s a wildly rich, rocket launching, electric car manufacturing guy named Anton Rusk. Lol.
What are the best books you read this past fall?
Now I’ve shared all the best books I read in fall 2022. What are your favorite books that you read this fall? Tell me about your favorites so I can check them out, too. Did you read any of the books on my lists? What did you think of them? Leave a comment and let me know what you thought.