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Rachel’s Reads – December 2022

The year is winding down, the weather outside is becoming chillier, and I can’t wait to curl up by the fire with a great book. As in past Decembers, I am continuing the tradition started several years ago of sharing my top books of the year. I hope you will see one of your favorites or will be inspired to pick up one of these. Maybe you will even find yourself reading by the fire, too!

  • The Swimmers by Julie Otsuka
  • Septology by Jon Fosse, translated by Damion Searls
  • Babel, Or the Necessity of Violence: An Arcane History of the Oxford Translators’ Revolution by R. F. Kuang
  • Trust by Hernan Diaz
  • The Colony by Audrey Magee
  • The Invisible Kingdom: Reimagining Chronic Illness by Meghan O’Rourke
  • Two Wheels Good: The History and Mystery of the Bicycle by Jody Rosen
  • South to America: A Journey Below the Mason-Dixon to Understand the Soul of a Nation by Imani Perry
  • An Immense World: How Animal Senses Reveal the Hidden Realms Around Us by Ed Yong
  • What We Owe the Future by William MacAskill
  • Alive At The End Of The World by Saeed Jones
  • Please Make Me Pretty, I Don’t Want to Die: Poems by Tawanda Mulalu
  • The Hurting Kind: Poems by Ada Limón
  • Time Is a Mother by Ocean Vuong
  • The Slain Birds by Michael Longley
  • Stranger in the Shogun’s City: A Japanese Woman and Her World by Amy Stanley
  • The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives edited by Viet Thanh Nguyen
  • In the Darkroom by Susan Faludi
  • Letters to Camondo by Edmund de Waal
  • Gathering Moss: A Natural and Cultural History of Mosses by Robin Wall Kimmerer

There are many books I didn’t get to read this year, and I would love to hear from subscribers about their favorite books so I can add them to my never-ending “to be read” list. Please reach out with the books you loved this year, and I will share reader favorites in my January column. 

Happy Reading and Happy Holidays!


Rachel became the publisher of The Independent in March of 2017 and then married her husband Jake in May. Their goldendoodle Einstein joined the family last year. Rachel is an avid reader and loves to share book recommendations. (Don’t miss her column, Rachel’s Reads in the Magazine!) She can always be found with a book nearby, especially while traveling (another of her favorite things).


Bailey Pianalto Photography


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