favorite books

Can You Guess What My Favorite Books Were From 2018?

Posted on January 5, 2019 by

My favorite books in 2018 were…

I read 58 books in 2018.

I feel pretty good about that – not just because I passed my Goodreads goal (I do so like a challenge), but mostly because I pushed myself to read a VARIETY of books this year.

Change is good, right?

It’s been part of building my reading community

I’ve failed at IRL book clubs, so my reading pals have been mostly virtual – on  Goodreads, Instagram, and Facebook. I’d love to connect with you there if we aren’t already.

You can read my best books list here from 2017. If you’d like to read the best books I read in 2016 click here, and for more best books recommendations click over to 2013 and 2014 favorites posts. I’ve also written a Books I Love post and would love to connect with you on Goodreads to share more about reading.

I’m happy to share my favorite books from 2018 with you!

Becoming by Michelle Obama

When I can read a book that feels like the writer is speaking directly to me, even when our experiences seem vastly different, I know I’ve found a gem. And the surprising thing about this book is that as it turns out, our stories are more alike than they are different. 5 stars.

Georgia: A Novel of Georgia O’Keeffe by Dawn Tripp

I have friends who shared mixed feelings about this one, but overall, I enjoyed the life story of this American master…it was as much a revealing of a woman’s journey towards self as it was about her art. 4 stars.

The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey

Oh, this book…Alaska 1920, set in the wilderness, in the snow. Just the right blend of history, romance, magical realism and the quest to know the balance between over and under parenting…poetic. 5 stars.

Dive Into Inquiry: Amplify Learning and Empower Student Voice by Trevor MacKenzie

Books written by awesome teachers to help transform our teaching from ‘good’ to ‘best’ – thinking about thinking fascinates me! 5 stars.

Tell The Wolves I’m Home by Carol Rifka Brunt

Such a beautiful and heart-wrenching story. Those who lived through the 1980s AIDS epidemic will remember the fear and ostracism…and those friends we lost. 5 stars.

When They Call You A Terrorist: A Black Lives Matter Memoir by Patrisse Khan-Cullors

A powerful read – what you don’t hear about the real stories that led up to the Black Lives Matter movement. Honest, raw and beautifully told memoir. 4 stars.

Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly

Wow – I loved this one! The author wove three narratives of the true, parallel stories of a NY socialite activist, a Polish concentration camp prisoner who was one of the famous ‘Rabbits’ of WW2, and a German Nazi doctor. So important to remember the atrocities and keep them from being repeated. 5 stars.

Refugee by Alan Gratz

Wow. What a book. I read this aloud to my 7th-grade students as part of the Global Read Aloud project – but I think EVERYONE should read it. Powerful three-part narrative sharing the refugee stories of Nazi Germany, 1994 Cuba and 2015 Syria. 5 stars.

Passionate Readers: The Art of Reaching and Engaging Every Child by Pernille Ripp

If you’re at all interested in learning about engaging readers, check out Pernille’s book. It’s so real, so direct, and so inspiring. I had the pleasure of talking with her at the NCTE conference in Houston last November, and she truly embodies the image of a passionate reading teacher. 5 stars.

The Art of Communicating by Thich Nhat Hanh

Learning to connect my personal peace with the world I create outside myself was a huge takeaway from this book. Highly recommend for everyone wanting to make the world a better place – and super useful for teachers and parents. 5 stars.

The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom by Miguel Ruiz

This one was actually a re-read for me, but since I’m older and wiser it meant something different than the first time. I found myself cheering the areas of life where I’m using some of the agreements, and reminding myself that I can always do better. Super helpful for teaching, too. 5 stars.

I’m Just Happy to Be Here: A Memoir or Renegade Parenting by Janelle Hanchett

When you watch blogger friends write and write and write and then wham – they publish a real life paper version – it’s something super special. And then when it’s this real, this WOW, this amazing…Janelle’s memoir isn’t for the faint of heart. But man, can she tell her story. 5 stars.

My Absolute Darling by Gabriel Tallent

This book was heart-wrenching, beautifully written, and one of the most difficult books I’ve read. Oh, how I could see Turtle…in the strength of children who endure so much more than they should ever have to. This book is epidemic difficult to read and not for a reader who can’t handle having Turtle’s painful story linger in their mind. 5 stars.

Glitter and Glue by Kelly Corrigan

This book caught me by surprise. I wasn’t expecting to like it this much, and I rarely take the time to read an entire book in one sitting. Glitter and Glue is the kind of book I’d like to write but am not sure I could. It’s as much about becoming a mom as it is finding out how much of your mom you have become. And that’s a good thing. 5 stars.

Other books I enjoyed in 2018:

A Year of Daily Joy by Jennifer Louden

You Are A Badass by Jen Sincero

A Clearing in the Wild by Jane Kirkpatrick

Caleb’s Crossing by Geraldine Brooks

Coco Chanel by Susan Goldman Rubin

The Woman in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck

An Invisible Thread by Laura Schroff

A Boy Called Bat by Elana Arnold

A Fugitive in Walden Woods by Norman Lock

The Orchardist by Amanda Coplin

Simon v. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Alberalli

The Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller

An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

Grading Smarter Not Harder by Dueck Myron

What She Left Behind by Ellen Marie Wiseman

The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware

A Note Yet Unsung by Tamera Alexander

Inquiry Mindset by Trevor MacKenzie

Peak by Roland Smith

A Beauty So Rare by Tamera Alexander

Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline

Amal Unbound by Aisha Saeed

A Lasting Impression by Tamera Alexander

The Butterfly Collector by Dot Hutchison

Home by Toni Morrison

All The Missing Girls by Megan Miranda

The Last Camellia by Sarah Jio

The Married Girls by Diney Costeloe

The Girl With No Name by Diney Costeloe

And a few more favorite books in 2018:

Beneath a Scarlet Sky by Mark T. Sullivan

The Daughter of Union County by Francine Howard

The Winter Guest by Pam Jenoff

Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

The Art of Stillness by Pico Iyer

The Tuscan Child by Rhys Bowen

At The Water’s Edge by Sara Gruen

The Secret Wife by Gill Paul

Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur

Salt To The Sea by Ruta Sepetys

Truth and Beauty by Ann Patchett

Downfall by JA Jance

The Perfume Collector by Kathleen Tessaro

The Paris Wife by Paula McLain

Jennifer Wolfe

Jennifer Wolfe, a writer-teacher-mom, is dedicated to finding the extraordinary in the ordinary moments of life by thinking deeply, loving fiercely, and teaching audaciously. Jennifer is a Google Certified Educator, Hyperdoc fanatic, and a voracious reader. Read her stories on her blog, mamawolfe, and grab free copies of her teaching and parenting resources.

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Comments: 3

  • My Inner Chick

    April 12, 2019

    what a great list.
    I’ve read Lilac Girls, which I loved.
    Thank you for you list.
    My list is on my blog, too!
    Which one, out of all of them, should I read? x

    • Jennifer Wolfe

      April 23, 2019

      Hi! So great to hear from you – I loved Lilac Girls. Have you read The Snow Child? And I think you’d like ‘I’m Just Happy To Be Here’ as well – two totally different types of writing, but both great! xoxo

  • Dawn Wink

    January 6, 2019

    You are AMAZING! What a spectrum of the world you create through your reading. Thanks so much fir sharing!! Xo

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