best of 2017: year’s end

Note: I’m out of pocket during my residency period at school. I love your comments! But it may take me several days or a week or more to respond.


My year-in-review post will be up next week, as usual. But first, also as usual, I want to share the list of my favorite things I read this year.

Not as usual: none were audiobooks, because I read no audiobooks this year. Few of these are new releases (they are marked with an asterisk*).

I gave a single rating of 10, late in the game, to an essay I’ve read over and over, and it keeps getting better every time. I still have not written about this essay. I still think you should go into it blind.

  • “The Fourth State of Matter,” Jo Ann Beard – nonfiction

I’ve refrained from going back and changing any ratings that I gave at the time; but I have split the books that I rated 9 into two groups, as I judge them now. This list is overwhelmingly nonfiction, since that is most of what I’ve been reading this year.

So. The top three which received ratings of 9, are:

The rest of my 9-ratings, all wonderful reads:

I gave plenty of 8s–too many, perhaps–and I’ve gone through and compiled you a slightly shorter list of my favorites from those books.

I hope this lengthy list gives you some good ideas for your own reading! What are some of the best books you’ve read this year?

Come back next week to see a further breakdown of my reading habits in 2017, what’s changed and what’s a surprise. Happy holidays and happy reading, friends.

6 Responses

  1. Julia. Please, please, please put your thoughts down here on ‘The Fourth State of Matter’! I just read it for the first time and would love to hear your perspective. (Not all of us are so perceptive, or can write, or think as well as you!) I’m off to the library to print it–when my tears dry or run out–so that I may reread it again and again. I will say that, while the piece is perhaps the finest I’ve ever read, it’s the fact that it was her story to tell, and a true one at that, that lends it its ultimate power. So very sad. So very moving.

    • Thank you for the compliments to my writing and thinking, and for your request; but you’ve made a fine start here, too! Okay. Well, you know I’m at school this week. So I can’t do the writing you’ve asked for just now, but I promise I will, before the end of January. Okay? You’ll find it here. Thanks so much for your interest in my thoughts!

  2. […] For the very *best* books I’ve read this year, see last Friday’s post, best of 2017. […]

  3. […] much about it. I had such a wild time with it again on this reading that I had to amend my “best of the year” post to put it at the very top. I felt close to Katie as I read this packet, too, knowing […]

  4. […] the gracious request of Uriah Pariah, here is a my response to an essay I admire greatly, and more and more every time I […]

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