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2021 Bookmarks Favorites

2021 Bookmarks Favorites

These are some of our team's favorite audiobooks of 2021!

Playlist Tags: Bookmarks topic: staff picks

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The Surprising Power of a Good Dumpling

By Wai Chim
Narrated by: Christina Ho
Length: 8 hours 2 minutes

An authentic novel about growing up in a migrant Asian family with a mother who is suffering from a debilitating mental illness. Anna Chiu has her hands full. When she's not looking after her brother and sister or helping out at her father's restaurant, she's taking care of her mother, whose debilitating mental illness keeps her in bed most... Read more »

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One of the Good Ones

By Maika Moulite & Maritza Moulite
Narrated by: Bahni Turpin, Jordan Cobb & Carolyn Smith
Length: 9 hours 49 minutes

One of the Good Ones

“I am SPEECHLESS. I am still processing. But what I do know, without a doubt, is that One of the Good Ones is a must-read, a beautiful gut punch by a sister duo that is poised to take the publishing world by storm. Maika and Maritza manage to pack so much into so little, each moment its own universe, tackling the enormously difficult topics of systemic racism, police brutality, coming out to religious parents, epigenetics, and grief. The multiple perspectives across multiple timelines are simply perfect, lending so much to the greater story, and mystery(! I never saw that twist coming), keeping you reading into the early hours. But amidst the greater discussions of dismantling the institutions that uphold respectability above all else, there is so much joy too. There is hope. There is friendship that crosses oceans (or countries as the case may be). There is a road to recovery. And that left me with the best kind of tears in my eyes.”

Second Star to the Right image Britt, Second Star to the Right
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Blood Grove

Easy Rawlins

By Walter Mosley
Narrated by: Michael Boatman
Length: 9 hours 21 minutes

Walter Mosley's infamous detective Easy Rawlins is back, with a new mystery to solve on the sun-soaked streets of Southern California.

Ezekiel "Easy" Porterhouse Rawlins is an unlicensed private investigator turned hard-boiled detective always willing to do what it takes to get things done in the racially charged, dark underbelly of Los... Read more »

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All the Lonely People

By Mike Gayle
Narrated by: Ben Onwukwe
Length: 12 hours 20 minutes

All the Lonely People

“This is one of those books that will make you cry, laugh, cry and wonder at the beauty of human relationships. Hubert, a Jamaican immigrant who lives outside London makes up the world around him because he's lonely, and in the process gets himself into a pickle. Fun twists and turns with a heartwarming, affirming story. The audiobook is excellent, too!”

Flyleaf Books image Jamie, Flyleaf Books
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Better, Not Bitter

Living on Purpose in the Pursuit of Racial Justice

By Yusef Salaam
Narrated by: Yusef Salaam
Length: 7 hours 25 minutes

Named a Best Book of 2021 by NPR

This inspirational memoir serves as a call to action from prison reform activist Yusef Salaam, of the Exonerated Five, that will inspire us all to turn our stories into tools for change in the pursuit of racial justice.


They didn't know who they had.

So begins Yusef Salaam telling his story. No one's life is the... Read more »

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Every Day Is a Gift

A Memoir

By Tammy Duckworth
Narrated by: Tammy Duckworth
Length: 8 hours 36 minutes

Every Day Is a Gift

“From fleeing war-torn Cambodia to immigrating to the US and overcoming poverty to graduate at the top of her classes and rise within the ranks of the US military to being shot down and losing her legs in the Iraq War, Tammy Duckworth time-after-time faced insurmountable odds and overcame them with grace, humor, and perseverance. EVERY DAY IS A GIFT is her story, which ultimately culminates in her role as a US Senator for Illinois, where she continues inspire and chart new paths for women in government. Duckworth narrates the audiobook of EVERY DAY IS A GIFT, making this not only a must-read, but a must-listen.”

Bookmarks image Beth, Bookmarks
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Out of Character

True Colors: Book #2

By Annabeth Albert
Narrated by: Kirt Graves & Joel Froomkin
Length: 9 hours 58 minutes

Jasper Quigley is tired of being everyone's favorite sidekick. He wants to become the hero of his own life, but that's not going to happen if he agrees to help out Milo Lionetti, his former best friend turned king of the jock. High school was miserable enough, thanks, and Jasper has no interest in dredging up painful memories of his old secret... Read more »

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Poison for Breakfast

By Lemony Snicket
Narrated by: Patrick Warburton
Length: 3 hours 19 minutes

Poison for Breakfast

Poison for Breakfast is a delightful and welcome return of Lemony Snicket. After finishing breakfast one morning, Snicket finds a mysterious note declaring simply "you ate poison for breakfast". Curious to discover who may have left the note and which breakfast item could have held poison, Snicket embarks around town, visiting his local shops and going down his breakfast ingredient list one by one. What follows is less of a whodunit and more of an introspective, hilarious, and at times poignant meditation on everyday life. Written in classic Lemony Snicket narration and read by the actor who played Snicket in the most recent Netflix series, I loved every minute of listening to this audiobook (a phrase which here means, I read this book in one sitting, delightfully nostalgic for days spent reading Lemony Snicket books in my youth).”

Mysterious Galaxy Books image Kelly, Mysterious Galaxy Books
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The Secret Lives of Church Ladies

By Deesha Philyaw
Narrated by: Janina Edwards
Length: 4 hours 6 minutes

If you enjoyed The Vanishing Half, then you’ll love The Secret Lives of Church Ladies.

“Beautiful short stories of strong Black women, secret longings, new love, and forbidden affairs. I loved the audiobook! I'm going to be giving this book to friends and urging them to read it!”

A Great Good Place for Books image Mike, A Great Good Place for Books
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The Girls Are All So Nice Here

By Laurie Elizabeth Flynn
Narrated by: Erin Mallon & Alex Allwine
Length: 9 hours 37 minutes

The Girls Are All So Nice Here

The Girls Are All So Nice Here is the first, but not the last, lie you will read when you devour this dark and disturbing novel about college girls and how they treat each other in order to be popular or important. The writing is chilling and so authentic, I felt like I was back in high school or college with a group of toxic girls who would stop at nothing to get what they wanted. The more I read, the more I wondered how Flynn could possibly come up with an ending that would be both satisfying and as deliciously evil as the rest of the book. She managed to deliver, and then some.”

Fiction Addiction image Nancy McFarlane, Fiction Addiction
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Surviving the White Gaze

A Memoir

By Rebecca Carroll
Narrated by: Rebecca Carroll
Length: 7 hours 28 minutes

An Esquire Best Book of 2021

A “gorgeous and powerful” (The New York Times Book Review) memoir from cultural critic Rebecca Carroll recounting her painful struggle to overcome a completely white childhood to forge her identity as a Black woman in America.

Rebecca Carroll grew up the only Black person in her rural New Hampshire town. Adopted at... Read more »

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Falling

A Novel

By T. J. Newman
Narrated by: Steven Weber
Length: 8 hours 26 minutes

Falling

Falling is an absolute masterclass in unique suspense fiction. From the first few lines, I could tell this was going to be a stunner, and boy, was I right. I'll be anxiously waiting until Newman releases her next novel!”

Naughty Dog Books image Shelby Roth, Naughty Dog Books
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Sharks in the Time of Saviors

By Kawai Strong Washburn
Narrated by: Tui Asau, G.K. Bowes, Kaleo Griffith & Jolene Kim
Length: 10 hours 37 minutes

Sharks in the Time of Saviors

“Night Marchers, gods, goddesses, and the dead all walk Hawaii with the Flores family, if only they can stop struggling to survive long enough to see them. At seven years old, Nainoa falls into the Pacific only to be brought back to his mother in the mouth of a shark, unharmed and now burdened with the rumor of legend. Noa struggles to understand his gift and what he is supposed to do with it, and each of his family members grapples with their role as well. Every character is imbued with the truths of family and the magic of legend and you will not close this book unchanged. Beautiful and a must read! The readers on Libro.fm grant entrance in to this world with an authenticity difficult to obtain otherwise.”

Cellar Door Books image Linda, Cellar Door Books
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