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Asking a roomful of librarians “What’s your favorite book?” can cause a riot. And it’s not an easy task to narrow a long list down to the top 15. But it’s done.

Frankenstein: Or the Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley is the 2018 Howard County Reads book. Written in 1818 as part of a challenge with Percy Shelley and Lord Byron, Shelley’s book shows unflinching wit and a strong female voice in this cautionary tale of a scientist creating a living, thinking being. And 2018 marks Frankenstein’s 200th birthday.

We’ll be releasing our list of Howard County Reads programs at a later date, and you won’t want to miss it – especially the monstrous mystery dinner and a zombie prom.


Top 15 2018 Howard County Reads Books

Frankenstein, Or the Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley.

All the Missing Girls by Megan Miranda

Told in reverse, over the course of 15 days, this psychological suspense novel will keep you turning the pages to discover the truth of the missing girls.

The Best We Could Do by Thi Bui

Alternating between the present and the past, Thi Bui’s debut graphic novel is a beautifully illustrated memoir about her family’s immigration from Vietnam in the 1970s.

Born a Crime by Trevor Noah

Trevor Noah, host of The Daily Show, has written an engaging and humorous memoir recounting his years growing up as a mixed race child in Apartheid South Africa. His story is a tribute to his mother, who raised him to be independent and courageous.

Forgetting Time by Sharon Guskin

Janie can’t understand why her 4-year-old son, Noah, keeps asking to go home and see his other mother. Things really get weird when she seeks help from a psychologist who has become a laughingstock in his profession.

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Starr’s life is already complex, living in the hood but attending a fancy suburban high school. Then, on the way home from a party, she watches as her best friend is shot by a white police officer and her life really starts spiraling out of control.

Her Mother’s Hope by Francine Rivers

This first of a two-book series, chronicles the life of Marta Schneider who left her native Switzerland to travel to England, Canada, then to the California vineyards, to give her family a better life. Marta’s tough love for her oldest daughter, Hildie, is misunderstood, but along with faith, she holds hope for all of her family.

Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI by David Gran

In the 1920s, a shocking series of crimes against the Osage people caused the newly formed FBI to investigate. Grann’s years of research uncovered startling new evidence revealed in this riveting non-fiction narrative.

Make Your Bed by William McRaven

Based on a commencement speech given in 2014 that went viral, Admiral McRaven shares ten principles he learned while training as a Navy seal that helped him overcome challenges not only in his training but throughout his life.

My Grandmother Told Me to Tell You She’s Sorry by Fredrik Backman

Young Elsa shares a special closeness with her creative, story-telling Granny. When Granny passes, she leaves Elsa a treasure hunt to complete which will lead her to understand the support system that exists for her among the “fairytale” characters that inhabit her building.

Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman

True to the ancient Nordic myths, Gaiman tells the stories of wise Odin, strong Thor and wily Loki, from the creation of the world to Ragnarok, the final destiny of the gods.

Nine Women One Dress by Jane Rosen

Aging designer Morris Siegel finally accomplishes his dream of creating “the” dress of the season. This creation takes on a life of its own, furthering the dreams of nine diverse New York women.

Small Great Things by Jodie Picoult

With a title relating to a Martin Luther King Jr. quote on fighting racism, Picoult deftly describes the trials of an African-American neonatal nurse who is charged with causing the death of the child of white supremacists.

Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

Aza tries to be a good student, a good daughter and a good friend, all while struggling with debilitating thought spirals.

What She Ate: Six Remarkable Women and the Food That Tells Their Stories by Laura Shapiro

Culinary historian Shapiro turns her focus to the relationship of food in the lives of six women, whose lives span over two centuries. This diverse group includes Dorothy Wordsworth, maiden sister of poet William, and feminist Helen Gurley Brown, author of Sex and the Single Girl.

About Howard County Reads

Inspired by the Washington Center for the Book’s “One Book” concept, the Howard County Reads (HCR) program was founded in 2004 to foster a sense of community through page-turning togetherness. It is an annual community-wide reading program sponsored by the Kokomo-Howard County Public Library, the Greentown Public Library, and Indiana University Kokomo Library. Every year a committee of staff members from the Kokomo-Howard County Public Library, the Greentown Public Library, and the Indiana University Kokomo Library as well as community members collaborate to select books and plan programs.