What do local library patrons say are the Best Books of 2023?

The good book-loving humans who work in the Sonoma County Library system have once again delivered their annual list of the 10 most checked-out books of the previous year.

“We are delighted to share the titles most checked out by community members this year which focus on thrillers, mysteries and pandemic fiction,” said Sonoma County Library Acting Co-Deputy Director & Collection Services Division Manager Jaime Anderson, in a news release accompanying the list. “In addition, library staff has curated a diverse list of their own favorites for kids, teens and adults. I guarantee you will discover something new.

The list does indeed include a range of interests, although per tradition the 10 books are not presented in any particular order, so although we know these are the 10 titles that were checked out the most, we do not know which ones were the most popular

Clearly, we’ll have to just make sure we read all 10.

“The Lincoln Highway” by Amor Towles

“Apples Never Fall” by Liane Moriarty

“The Judge’s List” by John Grisham

“State of Terror” by Hillary Rodham Clinton and Louise Penny

“Cloud Cuckoo Land” by Anthony Doerr

“Wish You Were Here” by Jodi Picoult

“The Maid” by Nita Prose

“The Last Thing He Told Me” by Laura Dave

“The Paris Apartment” by Lucy Foley

“The Madness of Crowds” by Louise Penny

As mentioned by Anderson, the staff of all Sonoma County branches also weighed in with their own favorites. The choices of librarians working at the Petaluma Regional Library include Stacy Willingham’s gripping 2022 novel “A Flicker in the Dark,” described as a “twisty thriller” along the lines of the “Criminal Minds” TV show, the eye-opening 2022 nonfiction “ Stolen Focus: Why You Can’t Pay Attention and How to Think Deeply Again,” by Johann Hari, and “Red Paint: The Ancestral Autobiography of a Coast Salish Punk,” by Sasha taqwšeblu LaPointe. The latter, released in 2022, is described as “an intimate and searing portrayal of a young Coast Salish woman’s journey as she embraces not only her own trauma, but also the experiences of colonial violence that her relatives endured, so that she can heal and carve a space out for herself in the world.”

The full list of Staff Picks can be found on LibraryAware.com.

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