Best of 2017

The votes are in! Here are 10 of the best adult fiction and non-fiction titles that our staff read in 2017. If you're looking for more recommendations, our staff would love to help you. Tell us about what you like to read, and we can give you personalized reading recommendations.

Best Books of 2017

Click on any of the titles below to see all available formats in our catalogue.

At Home in the World: Reflections on Belonging While Wandering the Globe by Tsh Oxenreider


graphic orange and teal book coverAs the author chronicles her family's adventure around the world--seeing, smelling, and tasting the widely varying cultures along the way -she discovers what it truly means to be at home. Oxenreider invites us on a worldwide adventure without the cost of a ticket; to discover people, places, and stories worth knowing about; to find peace in the places we call home; and to learn that, as the Thai say, in the end, we are all 'same same but different'

 

The Cottingley Secret by Hazel Gaynor


book cover showing old house through the fog and treesWhen two young cousins, Frances Griffiths and Elsie Wright from Cottingley, England, claim to have photographed fairies at the bottom of the garden, their parents are astonished. But when one of the great novelists of the time, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, becomes convinced of the photographs' authenticity, the girls become a national sensation, their discovery offering hope to those longing for something to believe in amid a world ravaged by war.



Difficult Women by Roxane Gay

Black cover with a pink heart and letteringA collection of stories of rare force and beauty, of hardscrabble lives, passionate loves, and quirky and vexed human connection. The women in these stories live lives of privilege and of poverty, are in marriages both loving and haunted by past crimes or emotional blackmail.

 

 

 

Do Not Become Alarmed by Maile Meloy

grey book cover with red flowersWhen Liv and Nora decide to take their families on a holiday cruise, everyone is thrilled. The ship's comforts and possibilities seem infinite, but when they all go ashore in beautiful Central America, a series of minor misfortunes leads the families farther and farther from the ship's safety.

 

 

 

Exit West by Mohsin Hamid

Blue cover with light blue titleIn a country teetering on the brink of civil war, two young people meet--sensual, fiercely independent Nadia and gentle, restrained Saeed. They embark on a furtive love affair, thrust into premature intimacy by the unrest roiling their city. As violence and the threat of violence escalate, Nadia and Saeed decide that they no longer have a choice. Leaving their homeland and their old lives behind, they find a door and step through.

 

Goodnight from London by Jennifer Robson

Book cover with couple kissing in front of Big BenIn the summer of 1940, ambitious young American journalist Ruby Sutton gets her big break: the chance to report on the European war as a staff writer for Picture Weekly newsmagazine in London. She jumps at the chance, for it's an opportunity not only to prove herself, but also to start fresh in a city and country that know nothing of her humble origins. But life in besieged Britain tests Ruby in ways she never imagined.

 

Option B: facing adversity, building resilience, and finding joy by Sheryl Sandberg

White cover with a floating balloon holding up a brickAfter the sudden death of her husband, Sheryl Sandberg felt certain that she and her children would never feel pure joy again. Her friend Adam Grant, a psychologist at Wharton, told her there are concrete steps people can take to recover and rebound from life-shattering experiences. We are not born with a fixed amount of resilience. It is a muscle that everyone can build. Option B combines Sheryl's personal insights with Adam's eye-opening research on finding strength in the face of adversity.

 

Rise and Shine Benedict Stone by Phaedra Patrick

Book cover of a man in a treeIn the quiet village of Noon Sun, Benedict Stone has settled into a complacent and predictable routine. Business at his jewelry shop has dried up; his marriage is on the rocks. His life is in desperate need of a jump start. And then a surprise arrives at his door. His audacious teenage niece invites herself into Benedict's world and turns his orderly life upside down. But she might just be exactly what he needs to get his life back on track.

 

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden

Cover with winter landscape and a cottage with lights onIn a village at the edge of the wilderness of northern Russia, a stranger with piercing blue eyes presents a new father with a gift - a precious jewel on a delicate chain, intended for his young daughter. Uncertain of its meaning, Pytor hides the gift away and Vasya grows up a wild, willful girl, to the chagrin of her family. But when mysterious forces threaten the happiness of their village, Vasya discovers that, armed only with the necklace, she may be the only one who can keep the darkness at bay.

 

The Hearts Invisible Furies by John Boyne

Pink cover with red font and small white arrowsCyril Avery is not a real Avery--or at least that's what his adoptive parents tell him. And he never will be. But if he isn't a real Avery, then who is he? Cyril is adrift in the world, anchored only tenuously by his heartfelt friendship with the infinitely more glamorous and dangerous Julian Woodbead. At the mercy of fortune and coincidence, he will spend a lifetime coming to know himself and where he came from and--over his many years--will struggle to discover an identity, a home, a country and much more.

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