books

Boston's Most-Borrowed Library Books of 2019

While the Boston Public Library hasn't provided statistics on its most-borrowed books of the decade, its staff put together not one but 15 lists of "2010s Top Ten" books

Boston Public Library reading room
Getty Images, File

The year 2018 was all the rage among patrons of the Boston Public Library in 2019.

Eight of the library's 12 most-borrowed books this year were published in 2018 — none more so than former first lady Michelle Obama's memoir, "Becoming."

It was checked out more than 9,700 times in 2019 — a rate of about 27 times a day! — far eclipsing the BPL's most-checked out book of 2018, Celeste Ng's novel, "Little Fires Everywhere," according to a list shared by the library.

Ng's book was published in 2017, but the next five most-borrowed books were all published in 2018: "Educated," by Tara Westover; "Where the Crawdads Sing," by Delia Owens; "Nine Perfect Strangers," by Liane Moriarty; "The Woman in the Window," by A.J. Finn, and "The Great Alone," by Kristin Hannah.

Two books from 1998 are also on the list: the first "Harry Potter" book, which was checked out nearly 3,000 times, and "The Handmaid's Tale," Margaret Atwood's novel that's been adapted into an ongoing TV show.

You can scan the list of all 25 most-checked-out books here.

Don't see your favorite book on the list? Technically there's still time to give it a boost — all locations of the library will be open on their normal hours through New Year's Eve, when they close at 5 p.m., though the Central Delivery Desk will be closed that day.

While the BPL hasn't provided statistics on its most-borrowed books of the decade, its staff put together not one but 15 lists of "2010s Top Ten" books, which you can find collected in one place here.

"We don't actually hope you agree with all our choices," last week's blog post noted. "We hope you'll argue with us! Part of the joy of 'best of' lists is getting outraged over what's been left out."

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