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Our Favorites from 2021

We asked the Glenside Library staff what their favorite books, movies, TV shows and albums were from the past year. Did any of your favorites make our list?

My three favorite books of last year:

  1. When No One is Watching by Alyssa Cole – a gripping psychological thriller and a clever statement about gentrification.
  2. Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia – A twist on the gothic horror novel, set in 1950s Mexico, with Lovecraftian overtones.
  3. The Madness of Crowds by Louise Penny – The latest in Penny’s acclaimed Chief Inspector Gamache series centers hard choices and controversy in the wake of Canada’s pandemic experience.

Jim

Adult Services Librarian

Books

Television

Albums

Movies

Amy

Youth Services Librarian

My favorite book I read this year was Verity by Colleen Hoover. This book is centered around a family, and the secrets they keep about their recent family tragedies. I really liked that this book had surprise plot twists, and the suspense kept me wondering what would be uncovered next.

One of my favorite albums of this year was Fearless (Taylor’s Version) by Taylor Swift. I love that she is willing to re-record all of her old albums so she can own the newer versions herself, while also making each album feel more updated.

My favorite TV show of 2021 would be Squid Game on Netflix. This series was very different from any show I have watched. I don’t usually watch anything scary but then this series got so popular, I had to see it for myself. Watching the contestants play each game was quite nerve wracking, especially once you see the shocking consequence of losing the game.

Erica

Computer Clerk

  1. When All The Light We Cannot See came out, I didn’t have the patience to wait for an item to come off the hold list to read it. I did read Cloud Cuckoo Land (I bought a copy with a gift card I had–maybe I’m still impatient) and really enjoyed it. I guess this means I’m going to have to read All The Light We Cannot See.
  2. I signed up for a streaming music service and discovered Lyle Lovett. Silk as butter that voice. I think I played the song “If I Had A Boat” on repeat for a week.
  3. Home Before Dark by Riley Sager actually scared me. I don’t read a lot of horror, but I usually try to squeeze one in in October. The book has me thinking that maybe I just haven’t been reading the right horror.

Ryan

Adult Services Librarian

My three favorite books of 2021 are all available at Glenside Library.

  1. I most enjoy books in which I cannot guess what is to come; I could not guess throughout this entire book, Good Me, Bad Me by Ali Land. I found the main character so intriguing; she kept me on my toes, and I was taken aback by the ending.
  2. Woman 99 by Greer Macallister gave realistic insight into what an insane asylum might have been like. I’m fascinated by insane asylums, so this insight entertained me. I found the character development well done as it was layered and realistic. Perhaps some of what happened seemed too good to be true at times, but the author wrote it in such a way that I was able to subscribe to it, and I found the ending to be satisfying.
  3. Lastly, I think I enjoyed The Care of Strangers by Ellen Michaelson so much because I related to the main character, who was a compassionate and observant one. I was touched by her and the other characters while also appreciating the grittiness to them and their settings. Most of all this was a thought-provoking book for me, and what I took away was how important it is to always, always treat people with kindness and to extend empathy.

Julianne

Public Services Librarian

One of my favorite books was Influence: the Psychology of Persuasion by Robert Cialdini. I listened to the Hoopla audiobook on a road trip, and could not stop talking about it with everyone we visited! He describes the psychological process in people when they say “Yes” to something. One fascinating finding is that when people put something in writing, they stay committed to the idea for longer and resist changing their minds about it–reminds me of Facebook.

Another favorite was The River by Peter Heller. It’s a wilderness adventure about two friends taking a canoe trip in Canada before returning to college, encountering very few other campers and then a raging forest fire. I’m ready to read everything written by Peter Heller.

Kate

Youth Services Librarian

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