By: Megan Hastings
Media Production Editor
As many do when a year comes to an end, I like to look back at some of my questionable decisions and wonder what went wrong, but I’ve recently needed a break from the embarrassing replays of the past that taunt me at 3:00 AM. Thus, instead, I’ve decided to review some questionable decisions from authors with the help of Goodreads’ list of the most popular books published in 2022.
First, let’s take a look at Reminders of Him by Colleen Hoover, which takes the top spot in popularity this year. This would not be a popular book list without Colleen Hoover making an appearance, so this comes as no surprise. Reminders of Him is a romance novel that follows recently-released convict Kenna Rowan as she returns to her hometown. Kenna’s story is heartbreaking, but is overshadowed when we meet Kenna’s love interest Ledger. Ledger’s behavior is so sporadic that I started getting whiplash. Overall, from Ledger’s feelings to his turbulent relationship with Kenna, the pacing was so incredibly off that it lessened the emotional impact the book had on me. I rate it a seven out of ten.
One of the only non-fiction books on the list is American actress Jennette McCurdy’s memoir I’m Glad My Mom Died, which lands in the seventh spot on Goodreads’ popularity list. Already setting the stage with an eye-catching title, McCurdy’s memoir discusses the numerous issues McCurdy faced in life, mostly at the hands of her mother. Her description of events is so detailed that it is impossible to take your eyes off the page. She is hilariously relatable and has a laid-back writing style that seems like her genuine train of thought. Jennette doesn’t shy away from any topics and addresses all of the abuse she went through candidly. Well-balanced with the right amount of humor and sincerity, I’m Glad My Mom Died is an impactful story that should be on the most-popular list next year too. This one is a fantastic ten out of ten.
Lower on the list, at number 50, is I Kissed Shara Wheeler by Casey McQuiston. This book follows Chloe Green as she tracks down a girl who kissed her and suddenly vanished into thin air. As a sucker for romance books with subtle mysteries, I expected to love this book. Unfortunately, it fell flat and did not meet the expectations I set for it. I lost interest in the main romance and the mystery and started to focus more on Chloe’s best friends. I don’t hate it, however, it did leave me wanting an entirely separate book just for the two side characters who fell in love. I rate it a meager six out of ten.
To wrap this review up, I need to talk about Young Mungo by Douglas Stewart. Upsettingly at number 99, Young Mungo gives a voice to those unrepresented in the literary world. The story follows Mungo and James as they become best friends despite differences that should make them enemies. Stuart’s writing is lyrical and fully capable of giving you the ugliest, but well-deserved, cry. This book needs a higher ranking on the Goodreads list. Dare I say the top spot? The only rating this book deserves is a 100 out of 10, because it truly outperformed.
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