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As 2022 comes to a close, the Calgary Public Library has taken a deep dive into its borrowing records to see what interested Calgary readers the most this year.
Taking top spot as the most borrowed book of adult fiction was The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave, followed by Kristin Hannah’s The Four Winds and Brit Bennett’s The Vanishing Half – both of which also placed in 2021’s Top 10 List.
Other highlights include Brianna Wiest’s 101 Essays That Will Change the Way You Think topped the audiobook chart, followed by James Clear’s Atomic Habits, which was first published in 2018.
The top 16 most-read titles for teens in 2022 were all from the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney. Other popular titles included Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo and They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera.
Captain Underpants and the Big, Bad Battle of the Bionic Booger Boy by Dav Pilkey captured the No. 1 spot for Kids in 2022, with JRR Tolkien’s classic The Hobbit also placing.
Calgary authors were also popular this past year, including several who featured in the news.
Readers were eager to get their hands on The Sleeping Car Porter after it won the 2022 Giller Prize, Canada’s most significant literary award, in November. Author Suzette Mayr University of Calgary English professor, was also a featured speaker at Wordfest. Her book brings to life an important part of Black history in North America, from the perspective of a queer man living in a culture that renders him invisible. When a mudslide strands a train, Baxter, a Black sleeping car porter, must contend with the perils of white passengers, ghosts, and his secret love affair. https://calgary.bibliocommons.com/v2/record/S95C1479326
Also popular was a supernatural noir thriller by Calgary writer CL Polk. Even Though I Knew the End is about a magical detective who dives into the affairs of Chicago’s divine monsters to secure a future with the love of her life. https://calgary.bibliocommons.com/v2/record/S95C1459789
Another book that was repeatedly requested seemed ripped from the headlines. And it was.
Mauled: Lessons Learned from a Grizzly Bear Attack by Crosbie Cotton and Jeremy Evans tells the miraculous tale of an Alberta man’s survival after being attacked in the backcountry. Evans was lucky to survive his extensive injuries and he still suffers some PTSD from the incident. https://calgary.bibliocommons.com/v2/record/S95C1476240
Fiction wasn’t the only thing of interest at the city’s public libraries. Local books about food, history and architecture were checked out often.
Local outdoor guide author Lori Beattie, who runs Fit Frog Adventures, added to her guidebooks with Calgary’s Best Bike Rides: 50 Urban Cycle Tours and Pathway Pedals. It not only details the routes, but popular attractions and stops along the way. https://calgary.bibliocommons.com/v2/record/S95C1456742
Shaun Hunter takes a literary journey around Calgary from its frontier beginnings to today’s contemporary city in her book Calgary Through the Eyes of Writers. She selected excerpts from over 150 novels, stories, poems and essays that explore the city’s human and natural terrain. https://calgary.bibliocommons.com/v2/record/S95C1224358
Julie Van Rosendaal has been feeding Calgarians’ interest in food since the 1990s, through her former bakery, her cookbooks and a recurring radio spot on Calgary Eyeopener. Her de ella latest cookbook de ella, You are Human and You Need Cake, results from a series of nasty social media messages which transformed into uplifting blackout poetry and this collection of 36 comforting cakes. It is Van Rosendaal’s 13th cookbook. https://calgary.bibliocommons.com/v2/record/S95C1503700
Calgary Public Library members can access these and other titles by Alberta authors online through the Indie Alberta collection and the Read Alberta eBooks and eMagazines platform at calgarylibrary.ca
The Indie Alberta platform gives library members access to Independently published works from local authors across a wide variety of genres. The Read Alberta platform gives members aaccess to over 2,000 eBooks, audiobooks, and magazines from Alberta publishers, including the Prairie Indigenous eBook Collection: 300 titles by Indigenous authors and writings about Indigenous culture from publishers in Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta.