This is my book of the year read in 2022, not necessarily newly published. As it happens, one of my absolute faves has won awards, including a Goodreads award, and been picked by several people already. That may be a first for me, and I’m so pleased for the author.

I’ve given up trying to choose one, so I’m listing all those that got 5 stars from me on Goodreads, and putting them into genre-type groups.

Candidates for my Book of the Year

  • Ada Lovelace Cracks the Code (MG, novella)
  • Solstice Day Gifts (novella)
  • HMS Lanternfish (fantasy, later in series)
  • Desperate Undertaking (crime, historical, later in series–plus three more in series)
  • The Darkness Manifesto (non-fiction, environmental)
  • The Empire (mystery, historical)
  • Nocturne (gothic, historical, YA)
  • Bleeding Heart Yard (crime, later in series)
  • Marple: Twelve new stories (crime, anthology)
  • He Knew He Was Right (non-fiction, biography, environmental)
  • Femina (non-fiction, historical)
  • The Shadow of the Great Fire (MG, historical, time travel)
  • Looking for Emily (MG, mystery)
  • Museum of Ordinary People (henlit)
  • Birdgirl (non-fiction, autobiography, environmental, mental health)
  • The Raven Boys (fantasy, YA)
  • Project Hail Mary (science fiction)
  • When Stars are Scattered (MG, non-fiction, refugees)
  • Lessons in Chemistry (suspense, historical, science)
  • Max’s Royal Adventure (MG, time travel, novella, later in series)
  • The Locked Room (crime, later in series)
  • The Flames (historical, art)
  • I, Mona Lisa (historical, art)
  • The Ocean and the End of the Lane (fantasy)

That comes to 27, which is more or less normal for my five-star totals. I’ve read around ten more books than usual, and four were from the same series, (and two more in a different series). So the quality ratings are on a par with previous years, I think. Now to short-list… I find it easiest to do this simply by thinking of the books and how memorable they were.

MG and YA

Nocturne, Looking for Emily, When Stars are Scattered

… and the winner is… Looking For Emily

Novella and Anthology

… and the winner is… …Max’s Royal Adventure

Fantasy, Science Fiction and Time travel

HMS Lanternfish, The Shadow of the Great Fire, The Raven Boys, Project Hail Mary

… and the winner is… Project Hail Mary

Crime, suspense, mystery, thriller

Desperate Undertaking, Lessons in Chemistry, The Locked Room

… and the winner is… Lessons in Chemistry


The Flames, I, Mona Lisa, Lessons in Chemistry

You know, I read these in more or less successive weeks, and I don’t think I can choose between them. All brilliant.


The Darkness Manifesto, Birdgirl, He Knew He was Right

… and the winner is… The Darkness Manifesto

And my Book of the Year is…

I really can’t choose. Even if it was books published in 2022 I’d have trouble, since eight of those in the final selections are 2022 publications (thank you, Net-galley and the publishers.) Five are indie-published, by the way. Actually only five of my 27 are indies, but they all made the whittled down list, which means something, I’m sure.

It’s either The Darkness Manifesto, Lessons In Chemistry, The Flames, I, Mona Lisa or Project Hail Mary, though. 🙂

Book of the Year 2022

6 thoughts on “Book of the Year 2022

  • 7 January, 2023 at 12:20 pm

    Happy New Year, Jemima! Thanks for sharing a list of wonderful books. Will forward to the pleasure of all other readers. Enjoy your weekend! xx Michael

    • 7 January, 2023 at 1:21 pm

      Thanks, Michael. I’m beginning to see some of the books I read turn up in other people’s lists, which is great. And What You Can See From Here, which was on my list for 2021 is regularly mentioned in Diary of a Tuscan Bookshop, which I’m reviewing soon 🙂

    • 8 January, 2023 at 8:45 am

      I’m sure you’d like it as much as I did 😀

  • 8 January, 2023 at 5:39 am

    Your lists are always a good place for me to go looking for reading ideas. And I’m thinking this may be the year for me to concentrate on finishing some series. My non-fiction may be taking a different turn for a while, though.

    • 8 January, 2023 at 1:54 pm

      I’ve written you a long email in reply – and a PS, which is probably read second lol. Now you’re intrigued 🙂

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