My Favorite Books of 2022
This year, I broadened my horizons regarding the literature I read. Though I usually prefer poetry, I found myself picking up contemporary fiction more often! So, without further ado, here are my favorite books I’ve read this year (in no particular order):
1. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
Genre: Fiction/Coming of Age/Bildungsroman
Year of publication: 1982
Brief Summary: Walker tells an incredible and moving story of young Celie and her sister Nettie on their journey of finding independence, self-discovery and evolving as young, black women in 1930’s rural Georgia. Divulging in dark themes, the novel takes us through the hardships Celie and her sister face whilst tackling their early childhood trauma. The book’s events are pretty dark and troubling, so do be careful when reading.!
Trigger Warnings: rape, statutory rape, domestic violence, physical and emotional violence, racism
2. Pachinko by Min Jin Lee
Genre: Genre: Historical Fiction
Year of Publication: 2017
Brief Summary: Pachinko covers a Korean family throughout four generations doing whatever they can to survive. The novel focuses on family, motherhood, imperialism and much more. The family saga follows historical events causing turmoil including Japanese colonization, wartime, civil war, and immigration. A truly eye-opening work that exposes you to the hardships East Asian families had to face throughout the 20th century.
Trigger Warnings: war, violence, pedophilia, mentions of substance abuse, racism
3. The Ministry of Utmost Happiness by Arunduthi Roy
Genre: Historical Fiction
Year of Publication: 2017
Brief Summary: The world patiently waited twenty years for Roy to release her next novel after her stellar debut The God of Small Things, and she did not disappoint! The novel follows periods of political unrest in India, namely Hindu nationalism and Kashmiri separatism. Roy narrates the stories of transgender character Anjum who finds her life being upturned by tragedy, and Tilo who fights for her love with freedom fighter Musa as she follows him to Kashmir. An intense and complex narrative, Roy’s prose and wisdom will leave you wanting more and more.
Trigger Warnings: violence, physical and emotional abuse, mentions of assault
4. I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jennette McCurdy
Year of Publication: 2022
Brief Summary: McCurdy takes us on a journey of a former child actor in this intense yet hilarious memoir. Dealing with topics such as fame, substance abuse, eating disorders and mommy issues, this autobiography is certainly one of a kind.
Trigger Warnings: graphic descriptions of eating disorders, substance abuse, child abuse
5. The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri
Year of Publication: 2021
Brief Summary: A departure from the tone of previous books on this list, The Jasmine Throne tells the story of an imprisoned princess and a priestess disguised as a maidservant who unite to rewrite the faith of an empire. Morally grey lesbians and epic fantasy come together to create a brilliant, complex novel that will keep you on your toes throughout!
Trigger Warnings: violence, gore, abuse