As part of Information Today’s We the People column in the January/February 2022 issue, Information Today contributors and staffers shared the (new and not-so-new) books they’re most looking forward to reading in 2022, whether for pleasure, for education, or both. I hope this helps you find your next great read!
—Brandi Scardilli, editor
I’ve become very interested in the “science” part of information science, especially information-seeking behavior. Thus, I am about to cozy up with Donald Case’s book Looking for Information: A Survey of Research on Information Seeking, Needs, and Behavior.
[I’ll be reading] The Lyrics, by Sir Paul McCartney, and a new book about the search for the Nile’s source by the amazing Candice Millard.
I plan to continue reading the works of Octavia Butler, whom I recently learned is considered a sci-fi writer. I began with reading Butler’s The Parable Series with a friend and am hooked!
I am looking forward to reading SPIN Selling by Neil Rackham. It was recommended by Kelvin Watson during his presentation at the 2021 Internet Librarian virtual conference.
Most of my professional reading is from journals (and talking with the experts). However, we all need fun as well. I’m grateful to be in Minnesota, where we have such amazing writers. My next stop is at 2021 Pulitzer winner Louise Erdrich’s bookstore to get her suggestions for my 2022 reads! Its motto says it all: “Our books are lovingly chosen. Our store is tended with care.” A must-see if you travel to the Twin Cities!
The best books for me are always pleasure and education. I’m looking forward to reading Paradise Falls: The True Story of an Environmental Catastrophe by Keith O’Brien (release April 2022) about the contamination of Love Canal, The Other Dr. Gilmer by Benjamin Gilmer (release March 2022) about a doctor with untreated mental illness who committed a shocking crime, and The Hard Sell: Crime and Punishment at an Opioid Startup by Evan Hughes (release January 2022) about Insys Therapeutics and the monetization of the opioid crisis. The best nonfiction book I read this year (not that anyone asked, but I’ll tell you anyway!) was actually published in 2018 and is still a blockbuster: Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by John Carreyrou about Theranos and the spectacular fraud of Elizabeth Holmes. Honorable mention for Not a Happy Family by Shari Lapena, because no one can write a family thriller with a gasp-worthy ending like she can, except maybe Ashley Audrain, whose debut The Push has not left my brain since I read it in March 2021.
I want to read more comic books and graphic novel series. Every few years, I read Alan Moore’s edition of Swamp Thing, and I think a reread of that is coming up.
I am a big fan of Louis Theroux documentaries and really enjoyed his podcasts during lockdown. I am looking forward to learning more about Louis’ own life lessons from his most recent book Gotta Get Theroux This: My Life and Strange Times in Television.
I’ll reread my collection of Jorge Luis Borges and V.S. Naipaul. I’m keeping an eye out for Now You See Us, the follow-up to Invisible Women: Exposing Data Bias in a World Designed for Men, by Caroline Criado Perez.
The upcoming book I am looking forward to reading, for pleasure and education, is Mark Lehner and Pierre Tallet’s The Red Sea Scrolls: How Ancient Papyri Reveal the Secrets of the Pyramids. Tallet discovered the Red Sea Scrolls in 2013, and this soon-to-be published text will discuss that discovery, what the 4,600-year-old papyri tell us about Giza, and further inform our understanding of monument-building in ancient Egypt.
To continue learning about developing data stories, I’m looking forward to working my way through Storytelling With Data by Cole Nussbaumer Knaflic and An Introduction to Statistical Learning by James, Witten, Hastie, and Tibshirani. I’m slowly working my way through Organic Chemistry by Janice Gorzynski Smith. I’ll also be reading The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander and The Sum of Us by Heather McGhee. For fun, I just recently bought Heir of Novron by Michael J. Sullivan (the last book in the Riyria Revelations series), so I’ll be rereading the whole series.
I’m looking forward to reading an upcoming book, Marge and Julia, to be released by University Press of Florida at the end of May 2022. If you want to know why this book has personal meaning for me, I’ll meet you at Computers in Libraries and explain all. See you there!
As a Kentucky native, I sometimes write about the state’s famous bourbon industry, so I’m going to make time to finally read a book that came out about a year ago: Pappyland: A Story of Family, Fine Bourbon, and the Things That Last.
I have two books on my reading list at the moment. I want to read the combined autobiography by brothers Ron and Clint Howard, which is titled The Boys: A Memoir of Hollywood and Family. One of my earliest memories is sneaking out of bed to finish watching The Music Man, which was airing on TV, and I have loved the movie and Ron(ny) Howard ever since. I also was a fan of Gentle Ben, which co-starred a young Clint Howard, and always have fun finding Clint in so many of the films his older bro directs, including Apollo 13. I love historical fiction, so I am looking forward to getting a copy of Three Sisters, the third and most recent in a series of books (The Tattooist of Auschwitz and Cilka’s Journey were the first two, and I highly recommend them both) by Heather Morris.
I just read Andy Weir’s Project Hail Mary and don’t really have anything on my radar screen at the moment. I did attend a workshop on an upcoming book tentatively titled Board to Death, a critical look at the actions and inactions of licensing boards in regulating their respective industries, and it was fascinating and a bit frightening.
I just finished reading Ken Follett’s World Without End and have the next in the series—the third book, A Column of Fire—on my Kindle. They’re excellent books, and I get very engrossed in them, but they’re long, so a pretty big commitment. In 2022, I’d like to finish the series.
I’m excited for the next Greer Hendricks-Sarah Pekkanen thriller, The Golden Couple, which comes out in March. Farrah Rochon’s third entry in The Boyfriend Project rom-com series will publish in August. And I’m looking forward to the nonfiction Funny Farm: My Unexpected Life With 600 Rescue Animals, written by Laurie Zaleski, who is the owner of a local animal sanctuary that opens to the public twice a week.
I’ve got Deanna Raybourn’s An Impossible Imposter (a Veronica Speedwell book) on preorder. She’s been one of my favorite writers for years. I started out as a fan of her work, and now we’ve been friends for ages. I don’t know how I got that lucky, but hey. Holly Black’s Book of Night is something I’m excited about. She was the first professional author I ever met, and her work is always incredibly beautiful. And Claribel Ortega’s Witchlings! Claribel is a totally brilliant YA author, who is one of the kindest, most hardworking people in the business.