Image courtesy King County Library System

Image courtesy King County Library System

KCLS releases best books list of 2023

Librarians are always reading — here’s their top picks for this year.

Still looking for a gift for someone special?

KCLS recently released their top 125 books list for 2023, which includes 25 titles from fiction, non-fiction, teen, children, and audio books, which is a new category this year.

The Best Books list is comprised of nominations made by KCLS staff and librarians that “read thousands of books each year”, a press release reads. A selection committee then takes those nominations and whittles them down to the list it is now.

For a full list in all categories, and to see if they’re available to check out at your local library, head to


* “I Have Some Questions for You”, by Rebecca Makkai

* “The Covenant of Water”, by Abraham Verghese

* “Ghost Music”, by An Yu

* “Tress of the Emerald Sea”, by Brandon Sanderson

* “The September House”, by Carissa Orlando

* “Biography of X”, by Catherine Lacey

* “Happy Place”, by Emily Henry

* “Ink Blood Sister Scribe”, by Emma Torzs

* “How to Sell A Haunted House”, by Grady Hendrix

* “Emily Wilde’s Encyclopedia of Faeries”, Heather Fawcett

* “The Wind Knows My Name,” by Isabel Allende

* “Big Swiss”, by Jen Beagin

* “Summer Reading,” by Jenn McKinlay

* “Maame”, by Jessica George

* “Bad Cree”, by Jessica Johns

* “Good Night, Irene”, by Luis Alberto Ussea

* “The Spare Man”, by Mary Robinette Kowal

* “What You Are Looking For Is in the Library”, by Michiko Aoyama

* “To Shape A Dragon’s Breath”, by Moniquill Blackgoose

* “The Shamshine Blind”, by Paz Pardo

* “Yellowface”, by R. F. Kuang

* “Fourth Wing”, by Rebecca Yarros

* “Mr. Nash’s Ashes”, by Sarah Adler

* “Lone Women”, by Victor LaValle

* “The Passenger”, by Cormac McCarthy

* “Stella Maris”, by Cormac McCarthy


* “Imogen, Obviously”, by Becky Albertalli

* “A First Time for Everything”, by Dan Santat

* “The Princess and the Grilled Cheese Sandwich”, by Deya Muniz

* “A Stolen Heir”, by Holly Black

* “Darkhearts”, by James Sutter

* “Lion’s Legacy”, by Lev EC Rosen

* “Different for Boys”, by Patrick Ness

* “The New Next Syrian Girl”, by Ream Shukairy

* Ander & Santi Were Here”, by Jonny Garza Villa

* “Those Who Helped Us”, by Ken Mockizuki

* “Imposter Syndrome and Other Confessions of Alejanda Kim”, by Patrica Park

* “Family Style”, by Thien Pham

* “Blood Debts”, by Terry J. Benton-Walker

* “Spice Road”, by Maiya Ibrahim

* “Accountable:, by Dashka Slater

* “Brooms”, by Jasmine Walls

* “The Davenports”, by Krystal Marquis

* “An Echo in the City”, by K. X. Song

* “She Is A Haunting”, by Trang Thanh Tran

* “That Self-same Metal”, by Brittany N. Williams

* “Those Who Saw the Sun”, by Jaha Nailah Avery

* “Your Freedom, your Power”, by Allison Matulli

* “¡Ay, Mija!” by Christine Suggs

* “Simon Sort of Says”, by Erin Bow

* “Reggie and Delilah’s Year of Falling”, by Elise Bryant


* “Global”, by Eoin Global

* “Just Jerry”, by Jerry Pikney

* “Remember”, by Joy Harjo

* “An American Story”, by Kwame Alexander

* “Spanish Is The Language of My Family”, by Michael Genhart

* “The Dark Lord’s Daughter”, by Patricia C. Wrede

* “Mexikid”, by Pedro Martin

* “Woo Hoo! You’re Doing Great!”, by Sandra Boynton

* “A Land of Books”, by Duncan Tonatiuh

* “Bea Wolf”, by Zach Weinersmith

* “I’m From”, by Gary Gray

* “Stickler Loves the World”, by Lane Smith

* “In The Night Garden”, by Carin Berger

* “My Powerful Hair”, by Carole Lindstrom

* “My Baba’s Garden”, by Jordan Scott

* “One Upon A Book”, by Lin Grace

* “Nell Plants A Tree”, by Anne Wynter

* “The Universe in You”, by Jason Chin

* “Simon and the Better Bone”, by Corey R. Tabor

* “The Yellow Handkerchief”, by Donna Barba Higuera

* “Slowly, Slowly”, by Toni Yuly

* “The Manifestor Prophecy”, by Angie Thomas

* “We Still Belong”, by Christine Day

* “The Lost Year”, by Katherine Marsh

* “Parachute Kids”, by Betty C. Tang

Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in Life

Healthy Kids Day free event coming up April 20 at Kent YMCA

Activities to include face painting, bounce house and dodgeball

City of Kent offers space festival for families May 4 at ShoWare Center

Retired astronaut Jose M. Hernandez to speak at event

Kent-based Theatre Battery seeks performers for ‘Romeo and Juliet'

Auditions set for April 29-30 at Kent Station

City to begin major renovations at Kent Commons Community Center

Work on $1.5 million project to start soon to upgrade recreation facility

Comic book collection is still a staple of Emerald City Comic Con. Photo by Bailey Jo Josie/.
Fandoms converge at Emerald City Comic Con

Even with big names at this year’s con, locals brought the good vibes to the nerdy weekend.

Spring is near as nesting eagles return to Riverbend in Kent

Eagles can be spotted near Riverbend Golf Complex and along the Green River and Interurban Trail

Kent YMCA to offer free Community Day on Saturday, Feb. 24

Facility will be open noon to 3 p.m. to all for swim, gym and other activities

Voiceover actor Kat Cressida will visit Auburn at Unlock the Con on Feb. 17-18 for meet and greets, an exclusive dinner with a Q&A panel and a Sunday “Brunch with the Bride.” (Courtesy photo)
Disney voice actor Kat Cressida to host meet and greet in Auburn

Tickets are available for this two-day fandom event at the Outlet Collection’s Unlock the Con on Feb. 17 and 18.

Performers wanted for return of ‘Kent Has Talent' show

Registration starts Feb. 1; auditions March 23-24; show set for May 23

Cider & Ale Trail coming to historic downtown Kent March 8

Event to feature cideries, breweries, distilleries from Washington and Oregon

Construction at the Snoqualmie Casino. CAMERON SIRES,
Snoqualmie Casino expansion inches closer to completion

Convention space, ballroom and 210-room hotel to be completed by 2025