Best Books of 2022

  1. Carrie Soto Is Back: Taylor Jenkins Reid‘s latest novel about a nearly over-the-hill tennis star took my breath away.
  2. I’m Glad My Mom Died: Jennette McCurdy’s memoir of her childhood, her career, and her abusive mother made me grateful for my parents, warts, and all.
  3. Hollywood Ending: Harvey Weinstein and the Culture of Silence: The revelations in this book are damming.
  4. What Souls Are Made Of: A Wuthering Heights Remix: The book takes Wuthering Heights in a new direction, deepening the narrative and an understanding of Bronte’s era.
  5. The Matchmakers Gift: A Novel: Lynda Cohen Loigman‘s latest novel about a Jewish teenage matchmaker in the early 20th century and her skeptic granddaughter is pure gold.
  6. The Princess and the Scoundrel: The book tells the story of the wedding and honeymoon of Princess Leia Organa and Han Solo after the destruction of the Empire in Return of the Jedi.
  7. The Weight of Blood: This reboot of Carrie adds racism to the mix, making Stephen King‘s novel even more relevant than it already was.
  8. Gangsters vs. Nazis: How Jewish Mobsters Battled Nazis in WW2 Era America: Their tactics may not have been exactly legal, but standing up against antisemitism is nothing to sneeze at.
  9. Madam Speaker: Nancy Pelosi and the Lessons of Power: This biography of Nancy Pelosi is a reminder of the barriers she has broken and the legacy she will leave behind.
  10. His Name is George Floyd: One Man’s Life and the Struggle For Racial Justice: The murder of George Floyd forced the world to face its racist past.

Here’s to the books we read in 2022 and the ones we will read in 2023.

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Carrie Soto Is Back: A Novel Book Review

Anyone who excels in sports obviously needs both passion and drive to succeed. But at what point are friendships and relationships in general sacrificed to reach the top?

Carrie Soto Is Back: A Novel, by Taylor Jenkins Reid, was published in August. Raised by her widower father Javier, Carolina “Carrie” Soto is a tennis wunderkind. The Serena Williams of her day, she ascends to fame and glory at an early age. But Carrie is also solely focused on the game. Nothing else matters except for the win. By the time she reaches her twenties, she has claimed every championship title that is available to her.

Six years after announcing her retirement, Carrie decides that it is time to re-enter the game one last time. The problem is that she is nearly 40, out of shape, and playing against competitors who are younger and stronger than she. In addition to that internal pressure, the press believes that her time in the sun has set.

While trying to get back to where she was, Carrie is forced to reckon with the hardest thing of all: her heart. Can she open up, live a little, and win for the final time? Or is she done for good?

Jenkins Reid does it again. I was holding my breath throughout the novel, waiting to find out if she reaches her goal. What makes Carrie interesting as a character is that she is unlikeable. As a female, even in 2022, that is extraordinary.

I wanted to dislike her for her singlemindedness and her inability to see past the nose on her face. Instead, I was rooting for her. I wanted Carrie to prove to everyone that she still had it.

I’m the first to admit that I know next to nothing about tennis. The author brilliantly balances the details of playing while telling a story of a woman whose internal flame still burns as brightly as it ever did.

Do I recommend it? Absolutely. It is one of my favorite books that I have read in 2022.

Carrie Soto Is Back: A Novel is available wherever books are sold.

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