The Most Popular Books in US Libraries in 2016 and More Critical Linking

Today’s Critical Linking is sponsored by Penguin Random House Audio.


Start off the new year with some inspiring audiobooks!  From personal improvement, to spiritual listens, to health and fitness advice, audiobooks are a great way to digest this useful content while on the go! Visit for listening suggestions.

Hollywood has been good to Paula Hawkins. Following the release of a movie adapted from her novel, The Girl on the Train, the book has become one of the most widely read books at US libraries this year.

A survey of 14 metropolitan libraries by Quartz shows that The Girl on the Train is the most checked-out book at eight of them, and the most checked-out work of fiction at 11.

I love these looks at what people are checking out from US libraries in a given year. If only it included a city or two from the middle of the US (we have cities here, too).



In 2017, Ezra Jack Keats’ most beloved story, The Snowy Day,” will be showcased. Written and illustrated by the celebrated children’s author, it was one of the first prominent 20th-century picture books centered on an African-American child. Each of the four new stamps in this 20-stamp booklet features a different illustration of main character Peter exploring and playing in his neighborhood while wearing his iconic red snowsuit. The images include: Peter forming a snowball, Peter sliding down a mountain of snow, Peter making a snow angel, and Peter leaving footprints in the snow. Art director Antonio Alcalá designed the stamps with Ezra Jack Keat’s original art.

And there’s also some Thoreau stamps coming this year.


“The library helps you to see, not only that you are not alone, but that you’re not really any different from everyone else,” the late Maya Angelou once told an interviewer from the New York Public Library. Those are wiser words than pretty much anything that was said in all of 2016. Let’s try again next year, shall we?

Praise hands!


From picture books like Walter the Farting Dog, to longer works like Winnie the Pooh, and the first two books in the Harry Potter series, a wide variety of titles have made the jump to Latin over the years. Children’s books make good candidates for such translation work due to their simplified language and length, and in turn can give the study of Latin a more contemporary feel. But this doesn’t mean that turning these book into Latin in the first place is any small feat.

When I took Latin in college, children’s books in Latin were such a great learning tool. A fascinating piece on the challenges of taking modern children’s books and translating them to “a dead language.”

It's the ABCs of being a booklover and the only way to conquer your TBR: Always Be Closing (another book). Get your limited-edition tee now!