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The Year's Best Books: Our Critic's Picks

Fresh Air's book critic looks back at a busy year and selects the books that linger in memory as the calendar page turns.

Her favorite fiction:

  • Richard Russo's Bridge of Sighs
  • Min Jin Lee's Free Food for Millionaires
  • Stewart O'Nan's Last Night at the Lobster
  • Roddy Doyle's Paula Spencer
  • Salley Vickers' The Other Side of You
  • Ian McEwan's On Chesil Beach
  • Fred Vargas' Wash This Blood from My Hands
  • Ann Patchett's Run
  • Philip Roth's Exit Ghost


Nonfiction picks:

  • A.M Homes' The Mistress' Daughter
  • Clare Tomalin's Thomas Hardy
  • Arnold Rampersad's Ralph Ellison: A Biography

Copyright 2022 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

Maureen Corrigan, book critic for NPR's Fresh Air, is The Nicky and Jamie Grant Distinguished Professor of the Practice in Literary Criticism at Georgetown University. She is an associate editor of and contributor to Mystery and Suspense Writers (Scribner) and the winner of the 1999 Edgar Award for Criticism, presented by the Mystery Writers of America. In 2019, Corrigan was awarded the Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing by the National Book Critics Circle.