Not So Stuffy Award Winners

Are you the kind of person who looks over the typical book award winners and thinks, “Hum, not much here for me?”  Then The Reading List might just be for you!  Established in 2007 by the Reference and User Services Association, a division of the American Library Association, The Reading List “seeks to highlight outstanding genre fiction.”  Check out the winners in your favorite genres.  Visit the official awards list to find readalikes for the winners, the runners up in each genre, and winners from past years.


Before I Go To Sleep – S. J. Watson

Each morning, Christine wakes with no memory. From the clues she left herself, she tries to piece together her identity and sort lies from the truth. The unrelenting pace thrusts the reader into the confusion of a waking nightmare in which revelations of her past lead to a frantic crescendo.


The Night Circus – Erin Morgenstern

Le Cirque des Rêves is utterly unique, disappearing at dawn in one town only to mysteriously reappear in another. At the heart of the circus are two young magicians, involved in a competition neither completely understands. The dreamlike atmosphere and vivid imagery make this fantasy unforgettable.

Historical Fiction

Doc – Mary Doria Russell

In the early days of Dodge City, a genteel, tubercular Southern dentist forges a friendship with the infamous Earp brothers. Combining historical details and lyrical language, this gritty psychological portrait of gunslinger Doc Holliday reveals how the man became the legend.


The Ridge – Michael Koryta

The unexplained death of an eccentric lighthouse keeper in the isolated Kentucky woods, followed by a mysterious threat to a nearby large cat sanctuary prompt an investigation by a journalist and the local sheriff. Palpable evil and a sense of dread drive this chilling tale.


The Devotion of Suspect X –  Keigo Higashino (We’ll get this one ordered soon!)

An introverted mathematician matches wits with a brilliant former colleague to protect the neighbor he secretly adores from a murder charge. Although the reader knows the murderer’s identity from the beginning, this unconventional Japanese mystery remains a taut psychological puzzle.


Silk is for Seduction – Loretta Chase

Ambitious dressmaker Marcelline Noirot will do almost anything to secure the patronage of the Duke of Clevendon’s intended bride. Neither her calculated business plan nor his campaign of seduction can withstand the force of their mutual attraction. Witty banter and strong-willed characters make this a memorable tale.

Science Fiction

Leviathan Wakes – James S.A. Corey

The missions of a jaded cop and a dedicated ice hauler officer collide as the fate of humanity hangs in the balance. A mystery adds a noir touch to this space opera featuring deeply flawed yet heroic characters, non-stop action, and Earth versus Mars politics.

Women’s Fiction

The Language of Flowers – Vanessa Diffenbaugh Ballantine

A former foster child struggles to overcome a past filled with abuse, neglect and anger. Communicating through the Victorian language of flowers allows her to discover hope, redemption and a capacity for love. Damaged, authentic characters create an emotional tension in this profoundly moving story.

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