How to Read Harder

How to Read Harder

The above linked article talks about books that are thought provoking and are recommended by librarians.

1. An epistolary novel or collection of letters

Twain & Stanley Enter Paradise by Oscar Hijuelos

When the English Fall by David Williams

Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal by Amy Krouse Rosenthal

The Letters of Sylvia Plath by Sylvia Plath

2. An alternate history novel

The Arrival of Missives by Aliya Whiteley

The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu

The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal

Dread Nation by Justina Ireland

3. A book by a woman and/or AOC (Author of Color) that won a literary award in 2018


Lucky Broken Girl by Ruth Behar (Pura Belpré Author Award)

Macy McMillan and the Rainbow Goddess by Shari Green (Schneider Family Book Award)

Piecing Me Together by Reneé Watson (Coretta Scott King Book Award)

Stay with Me by Ayobami Adebayo (ALA’s Notable Books List)

4. A humor book


My Life as a Goddess: A Memoir Through (Un)popular Culture by Guy Branum

Gmorning, Gnight! Little Pep Talks for Me & You by Lin-Manuel Miranda, art by Jonny Sun

You Can’t Touch My Hair: And Other Things I Still Have to Explain by Phoebe Robinson

How to Ruin Everything by George Watsky

5. A book by a journalist or about journalism


Stranger: The Challenge of a Latino Immigrant in the Trump Era by Jorge Ramos

Reporter: A Memoir by Seymour Hersh

No Turning Back: Life, Loss, and Hope in Wartime Syria by Rania Abouzeid

Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors, and the Drug Company that Addicted America by Beth Macy

6. A book by an AOC set in or about space


Nigerians in Space by Deji Bryce Olukotun

Exo by Fonda Lee

Dawn by Octavia Butler

Ninefox Gambit by Yoon Ha Lee

7.  An #ownvoices book set in Mexico or Central America


The Body Where I Was Born by Guadalupe Nettel (Mexico)

The Dream of My Return by Horacio Castellanos Moya (El Salvador)

The Story of My Teeth by Valeria Luiselli (Mexico)

A novel or book of poetry in Spanish by Gioconda Belli (Nicaragua)
 

8. An #ownvoices book set in Oceania

Terra Nullius by Claire Colman

Bridge of Clay by Markus Zusak

The Descendants by Kaui Hart Hemmings

Rani Patel in Full Effect by Sonia Patel


9. A book published prior to January 1, 2019, with fewer than 100 reviews on Goodreads

Trust by Cynthia Ozick

Brazil-Maru by Karen Tei Yamashita

Mrs. Hollingsworth’s Men by Padgett Powell

Selected Tales by Henry James


10.  A translated book written by and/or translated by a woman


Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata, translated from Japanese by Ginny Tapley Takemori

Waking Lions by Ayelet Gundar-Goshen, translated from Hebrew by Sondra Silverton

Ladivine by Marie Ndiaye, translated from French by Jordan Stump

Human Acts by Han Kang, translated from Korean by Deborah Smith

11.  A book of manga


The Promised Neverland by Kaiu Shirai

My Hero Academia by Kohei Horikoshi

Skip Beat by Yoshiki Nakamura

Fullmetal Alchemist by Hiromu Arakawa

12.  A book in which an animal or inanimate object is a point-of-view character


Fox 8 by George Saunders

The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate

Watership Down by Richard Adams

Empire of the Ants by Bernard Werber

13.  A book by or about someone that identifies as neurodiverse


On the Edge of Gone by Corinne Duyvis

Autism Adulthood: Strategies and Insight for a Fulfilling Life by Susan Senator

The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

The State of Grace by Rachael Lucas

14.  A cozy mystery


One Day in December by Josie Silver

Born of Persuasion by Jessica Dotta

What the Dead Leave Behind by Rosemary Simpson

12 Clues of Christmas by Rhys Bowen

15.  A book of mythology or folklore


Mythology by Edith Hamilton

Don’t Know Much about Mythology: Everything You Need to Know about the Greatest Stories in Human History but Never  Learned by Kenneth C. Davis

Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman

Asian Mythology: Myths and Legends of China, Japan, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia by Rachel Storm

16.  An historical romance by an AOC

Tempest by Beverly Jenkins

An Extraordinary Union by Alyssa Cole

A Dance with Danger by Jeannie Lin

As Rich as a Rogue by Jade Lee

17.  A business book


The Art of Gathering: How We Meet and Why It Matters by Priya Parker

Rework: Change the Way You Work Forever by Jason Fried and David Hansson

The Magic of Tiny Business: You Don’t Have to Go Big to Make a Great Living by Sharon Rowe

Skin in the Game: Hidden Asymmetries in Daily Life by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

18.  A novel by a trans or nonbinary author


Long Black Veil by Jennifer Finney Boylan

Confessions of the Fox by Jordy Rosenberg

Little Fish by Casey Plett

Nevada by Imogen Binnie

19.  A book of nonviolent true crime


Our Bodies, Our Data: How Companies Make Billions Selling Our Medical Records by Adam Tanner

Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by John Carreyrou

Red Card: How the U.S. Blew the Whistle on the World’s Biggest Sports Scandal by Ken Bensinger

Chain of Title: How Three Americans Uncovered Wall Street’s Great Foreclosure Fraud by David Dayen

20.  A book written in prison

The Greybar Hotel: Stories by Curtis Dawkins

Conversations with Myself by Nelson Mandela

Inside: Life Behind Bars in America by Michael Santos

Our Lady of the Flowers by Jean Genet

21.  A comic by an LGBTQIA creator

Nimona by Noelle Stevenson

Wuvable Oaf by Ed Luce

The Backstagers, vol. 1: Rebels Without Applause by James Tynion IV, art by Rian Sygh

Fun Home by Alison Bechdel

22.  A children’s or middle grade book (not YA) that has won a diversity award since 2009

Lily and Dunkin by Donna Gephart (Rainbow Book List, 2017)

The Three Lucys by Hayan Charara (Arab American Book Award, 2017)

Rain Reign by Ann M. Martin (Dolly Gray Award, 2016)

How I Became a Ghost by Tim Tingle (American Indian Youth Literature Award, 2014)


23.  A self-published book

Different libraries have different policies about including self-published books in their collections, but Book Riot suggested a great place to start!

24.  A collection of poetry published since 2014


Ordinary Beast by Nicole Sealey

Cenzontle by Marcelo Hernandez Castillo

Wade in the Water by Tracy K. Smith

When I Grow Up, I Want to Be a List of Further Possibilities by Chen Chen

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