You know the drill. As 2022 draws to a close, it’s time to look back, reflect, and recap the highs and lows of the year. Here at Bookstr, we’re most concerned with the former – ruminating on some of the most impactul reads of the year. The books that left us inspired, in awe, or even in tears.
Therefore, for our final installment of Three to Read for 2022, we have three enrapturing books to share from three unique genres: a premiere example of narrative nonfiction, a stunning poetry collection, and a paranormal LGBTQ+ historical fiction tale. Let’s recap!
by Ed Yong
Every animal, including human beings, live in their own unique sensory bubble of experience. Ed Yong takes readers beyond our accustomed field of knowledge to explore the elaborate lives and perceptions of Earth’s flora and fauna. From bees to squid to crocodiles, dogs, songbirds, and flowers, there is so much to discover! All of which serves to deepen our own notions of existence and profoundly appreciate the immense natural world around us.
Yong’s 2022 summer release is perfect not only for science nerds but for those who nearly flunked biology in high school (aka: me). It’s accessible and emotionally– moving premise is expertly reported in narrative form– displaying Yong’s talent as a Pulitzer-Prize winning science writer and journalist. In other words, this scientific read is sure to evoke wonder and leave you reveling in the intricacy and mystery of our world.
Coffee Shop Read
by Ocean Vuong
Vuong’s touching exploration of life after his mother’s death substantiates a beautiful rumination on the paradox of grief and survival. Expanding upon the many intimate themes of his debut, On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous, the collection holds vivid insight into navigating personal loss as well as the meaning of family. Innovative in language and form, Time Is a Mother is composed of sheer, inexhaustible beauty.
Ocean Vuong, one of the most powerful young poets of our time, returned this year with their second stunning collection. If 2022 was a particularly hard year for you, Vuong’s prose provides a beacon of insight and comfort for understanding how to live life in periods of great darkness and despair. Pouring over Vuong’s poems as 2022 comes to a close is, in short, a perfect way to find beauty and resilience.
by Nell Stevens
Fourteen-year-old Blanca dies in a hilltop monastary in Mallorca circa 1473, and has haunted the place ever since. Centuries after her death, writer George Sand, her children, and her lover, Frederic Chopin, move to the small village. Blanca is absolutely enchanted from the afterlife when she sees Sand– setting off a moving and magical historical tale about artistry and desire.
Nell Steven’s impactful and atmospheric new release employs fictionalized biography writing for a gorgeous and quirky story about love and life after death. Uniting history, biography, and paranormal romance, Briefly, a Delicious Life holds enough oddity and intrigue to captivate all readers. It’s storytelling beautifully revisits centuries past through the eyes of a teenage ghost, meditating on themes of unrequited longing.
Look back on all of Bookstr’s Three to Read line-ups of 2022 here.