365 days – 1,342 items in the book bag, give or take a few

book stack

Why would one person check out this much stuff? Books, magazines, graphic novels, movies, music, picture books, middle grade, teen, mysteries, history, sci-fi, tv series, the occasional puppet and so much more. E-books and e-audiobooks aren’t even included, nor are the things which never end up in my email folder of library receipts. If I actually buy something, it’s not counted – and those are often the books I’m most excited about and can’t wait for the library to get. My husband and son also figure into this number; it’s usually just easier to check out what they want when I’m at work. And some things never get read or watched, even though they come home with me.  So I’m never sure exactly how many books I read.

Still, why so many?  It’s not just that I love the library and work in one. My healthy holds list means that I’m never short on new things to look at. (Often there are 80-90 things on that list in addition to everything I have checked out.) I also follow authors and what’s new in publishing, and I lead a writing group, which frequently has me thinking about storytelling or word choice or past favorite reads. Teaching a college class this fall also meant I needed books to look over and consider for student assignments. Some of those items are books or cds I requested when I was scheduled to lead story time or wanted to talk about a particular topic at one of my volunteer gigs.

When I look at everything the library shared with me (for free!), I see new favorites and things to laugh about, scary stories, great friendships, love, grief, fear, and hope. My life is so much more exciting and full because I read. I can’t wait to see what the next year holds – more books, more tears, more laughter, more joy.

Not everything I read was published in 2015, but many were. Here are just a few of my 2015 favorites, in no particular order, grouped by loose categories:

Picture Books

Wolfie the Bunny

Rude Cakes

Float

Last Stop on Market Street

Please, Mr. Panda

Boats for Papa

Leo: A Ghost Story

Imaginary Fred

Nerdy Birdy

We Forgot Brock!

Red

 

Middle grade

The Terrible Two

Echo

Gone Crazy in Alabama

Nightbird

The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate

Beware the Power of the Dark Side

Confessions of an Imaginary Friend

The Thing about Jellyfish

Circus Mirandus

 

Graphic Novels

The Graveyard Book, vol. 1 & 2

March

The Sleeper and the Spindle (I’m putting this one with the graphic novels, because it’s such a beautifully illustrated version.)

The Phantom Bully

Little Robot

Awkward

Nimona

Hilo

 

Teen Fiction

Under a Painted Sky

Silver in the Blood

Carry On

Everything, Everything

Dumplin’

Library of Souls

 

Teen Nonfiction

Symphony for the City of the Dead

Most Dangerous

I Will Always Write Back

 

Adult

Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend

A God in Ruins

Between the World and Me

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