Thoughtful Thursday: What’s the best book you read last month?

FanLit Readers' Favorites!It’s the first Thursday of the month. Time to report!

What is the best book you read in February 2022 and why did you love it? It doesn’t have to be a newly published book, or even SFF, or even fiction. We just want to share some great reading material.

Feel free to post a full review of the book here, or a link to the review on your blog, or just write a few sentences about why you thought it was awesome.

And don’t forget that we always have plenty more reading recommendations on our Fanlit Faves page and our 5-Star SFF page.

As always, one commenter with a U.S. mailing address will choose a book from our stacks. If you’re outside the U.S., we’ll send you a $5 Amazon gift card.

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  1. “Akata Woman” by Nnedi Okorafor had everything I wanted and more from this series. This is the 3rd book in “The Nsibidi Series,” and all of the characters are now teenagers and continue to grow into their abilities as they set off to save the world, again. Readers get more insight into each of Sunny’s (the protagonist’s) friends, and we learn more about the strife between Sunny and her father (relevant to the series).

    I did a Buddy Read with a friend and we read through the entire series (including the short story). While many people compare this series to “Harry Potter,” it’s more similar to Rick Riordan’s Universe. That being said, this series in in its own class and should be read by all fantasy fans.

    I hope this is NOT the last book in this series!

    • Andi /

      I love Remote Control and the Binti series by Okorafor–looking forward to starting Akata Witch this year!

    • Noneofyourbusiness /

      The greatest similarity with Harry Potter is that they’re both written by someone who’s a two-faced bad person.

      Nnedi Okorafor was not only a bad teacher, she abused me personally while she was my thesis advisor, to the extent that I still have stress and it triggers me to see her name mentioned.

  2. John Smith /

    I read “The Girl Who Drank the Moon” by Kelly Barnhill. I read it after being reminded of it by an article–probably at–about Newberry award winners. So I looked up the winners and short-listed books at Wikipedia. I wish they had winners and short-listed books divided up into separate lists, and lists that are just names and authors that you can click. The combination of the two categories and the amount of info. makes it very hard to just scan the books.

    Anyway, I looked up the book, read it, and it was pretty good. I think maybe I’d give it 3.5 stars to 4 stars, with 4 stars meaning a competently-crafted book, not a deathless classic. It’s just a very, very typical fantasy book. The fact that they gave it a Newberry medal just strikes me as very odd, more of a comment about YA books or YA fantasy books being a currently fashionable category. So a jury selecting it is a bit like all of the magazine or Website lists of top 100 books or movies where the bias is always heavily, heavily weighted to the most recent works, even if they’re demonstrably crappy or mediocre.

    I was actually surprised that there were a fair number of Newberry winners and short-listed books that are actually quite good and things that I liked when I was growing up. Because when I was growing up there were so many deadly, deadly dull Newberry winners that were books that I wanted to avoid at all costs–preachy, “educational” books that panels of adults wanted to inflict on children–“Here, this is good for you!” I always viewed the Newberry medal on a book cover as a very, very bad sign.

  3. Andi /

    The best was Four Hundred Souls: A Community History of African America 1619-2019. Each chapter covers a five-year period within the specified range of time, starting with the arrival of the first ship of enslaved people from Africa in 1619. Each chapter is also written by a different author, and in the audiobook, read by a different narrator. It was an amazing experience–enlightening and infuriating and devastating and, yes, even hopeful. A must-read for every American.

  4. SandyG /

    My best read of last month was magical realism – an ARC of Lost Coast Literary by Ellie Alexander. It was the one book I read all month that I didn’t want to put down

  5. Only one genre book in February but I liked it very much. Spells and Sensibility is by K.L. Noone and K.S. Murphy. It’s set in an alternative Napoleonic England with magic. Theo is head librarian and a decent magician himself. He find a disheveled ex-military man messing up his library who’s trying to find a cure for a curse. They team up to try to unravel an increasing complicated problem.

  6. Kevin S. /

    Leviathan Falls (The Expanse, #9)- James S.A. Corey

    • Katharine Ott /

      Our son keeps asking me if I’ve read any of the Expanse books – guess I’ll have to give them a try!

  7. Katharine Ott /

    Not a fantasy book, but I really enjoyed Peter Heller’s “Celine.” I’ve read a couple others by him – “The Dog Stars” and “The River” – this one is completely different, a 60-something blue-blood private investigator who hies off to the west, mostly in national parks, in her son’s tiny camper to track down a missing person. Such an enjoyable read.

  8. this one’s easy. Best book I read in Feb was Guy Gavriel Kay’s newest, All the Seas of the World. The 2nd and 3rd best books were Kay’s other two in the Italian triumvirate: Children of Earth and Sky and A Brightness Long Ago. the best non-Kay book was Max Gladstone’s Last Exit

  9. Noneofyourbusiness /

    The Babylon 5 novel “To Dream in the City of Sorrows” provides some much needed background for how Jeffrey Sinclair became the leader of the Rangers during Season 2 and what happened to Catherine Sakai, as well as Marcus Cole’s backstory and various elements of Minbari culture.

  10. Noneofyourbusiness /

    Did it work?

  11. Testing the Notify Me feature.

  12. Noneofyourbusiness /


  13. Hi everyone, sorry that we’re testing comments on this post. Noneofyourbusiness noticed that the comment notifications were no longer working, so I’ve changed our comment system and hope this one is working now. I’ve been making some tweaks this evening. Thanks for being guinea pigs and sorry for the inconvenience!

  14. The Distinguished Professor /

    Convicted murderess Anne Perry pulls off another thriller in “Death in Focus”, introducing a new series starring between-wars photographer Elena Standish. One thing I’ve noticed is that all her books feature people having lots of cups of tea.

  15. Lady Morar /

    “Russian Houses”, which is exactly what it says on the tin. Houses as in buildings, not noble families.

  16. E. J. Jones /

    I had a ton of fun with Summers at Castle Auburn by Sharon Shinn! Exactly what I needed.

  17. Hi everyone, sorry for another comment about this. I suspect that our new commenting system kept bringing down the site — it’s a memory hog. I’ve deactivated it for now to try to isolate the problem. Not sure when the comment notifications will be back. Sorry about that!!

  18. Jillian /

    Station Eleven by Emily St John Mandell. It was beautiful in every way. The perfect mix of post-apocalyptic sci-fi, philosophy, and shakespeare. Suffice to say- I loved it!

  19. LADY MORAR,if you live in the USA, you win a book of your choice from our stacks. If your address is outside of the USA, you will get a $5 Amazon gift card.
    Please contact me (Marion) with your choice and a US address. Happy reading!

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