Most Popular Checkouts of 2018, Fort Myers Beach Library


You Read, Watched, Listened to That?

I Read, Watched, Listened to That Too!

One of the aims of the library is to share awareness and excitement relating to reading discoveries that come our way. Between 600,000 and 1,000,000 titles were published in the United States alone in 2018, so it’s a challenge to have the titles that our readers will digest and quality ones that we can bring to the attention of those readers. By looking at those titles that have been checked out most often we come to see what becomes a must list for future readers. It also reinforces the purpose of the library–to share resources–and here in the “must list” we take the discoveries and enjoyment of many to work together to create the list. And a happy invitation to look forward to all in the new 2019 season. We can’t wait to see what the most checked out titles will be.


End Game (M BAL) is thrilling mystery fiction from the Will Robie Series by fan favorite author David Baldacci. Secret Service and terrorism’s deadly games of cat and mouse reel throughout this tale of defending the American way of life. This title was checked out in both fiction regular print and in large print over 100 times.

Three other titles are in the same circulation frequency category as Baldacci’s. Don’t Let Go (M COB) by international bestselling fiction author Harlan Coben is a step back in time to solve a personal cold case crime. The Cuban Affair (M DEM) –  Cuba and Key West have a long storied history; author Nelson DeMille combines the politics and danger of the islands and the high seas. Finally James Patterson’s The People vs. Alex Cross (M PAT) which reminds us how true to life defending a self-defense claim is, so very difficult to prove. There is never a winner when it comes down to an unintended death. Perceived intent to kill is always in the jury’s and the media’s scope.

Mangrove Lightning (M WHI) is the 24th Doc Ford Novel Series by Florida author, Randy Wayne White. The mystery sleuth must solve the question, are these crimes the result of antiquated curses and dangerous ghosts or an amateur serial killer? The story got the attention of nearly as many check-outs as Baldacci and DeMille’s titles.

One could not round out the fiction and mystery category without including The Rooster Bar by John Grisham (M GRI), a title that attracts attention across the board.


The top three TEEN titles have been The Alchemyst by Michael Scott (TEEN SCO), The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan (TEEN RIO) and Twenty Thousand Leagues under the Sea by Jules Verne (TEEN VER).


DVD is in constant demand and the most checked out titles in that regard were The West Wing series (WES) and Friends (FRI). Following that and often in viewer’s hands were The X-files (M XFI) and Downton Abbey (DOW).


Purplicious (JE KAN) is a children’s series  that shared the most checked out title status with J.K Rowling’s Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone (J ROW) by sisters, Elizabeth and Victoria Kann. Who could bully a little girl who loves pink a little too much? Well we all are susceptible to the blues, especially being the subject of other’s thoughtless opinions and biting words. One generous soul shares the secret to not being too blue…blend in the secret ingredient, pink and purplely, purplicious, purple appears to inspire joy and true friendship. Very popular were the related Emeraldalicious (JE KAN) and 5-Minute Pinkalicious Stories (J KAN).

Other children’s titles generates a lot of interest have been Lights, Camera, Middle School by Jennifer Holm (J HOL) and Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin (JE MAR).


Cookbooks remain a popular category, and in that regard, Margaritaville, the Cookbook by Carlo Sernagalia spent more time in reader’s hands than on the shelves. This was followed by Susanna Foo Chinese Cuisine (Cookbooks World Asian FOO) and Atkins: Eat Right, Not Less by Colette Heimowitz (Cookbooks Healthy Low-Carb, Heimoqitz). One can’t concentrate just on these three titles as Fix-it and Forget-it Big Cookbook by Phyllis P Good and The Flavor Matrix by James Briscione occupied a lot of attention too. If one wants titles that garnered much interest, include Crock-pot, The Minimalist Cooks at Home by Mark Bittman, Pasta & Italian by Fiona Biggs, Cravings by Chrissy Teigen, Bobby Flay Fit by Bobby Flay and Valerie’s Home Cooking by Valeria Bertinelli.

The Classics

The Classics Collection consistently gets a lot of attention and if you’ve been by you’ve seen the shelves and bookends that are giving increased life to these books. The most checked out title was Prayer, the Mightiest Force in the World by Frank Charles Laubach, followed in close-second by A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole, and The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger.

A simple formula for the classics is “a book that won’t stay closed.” The Classics titles keep producing meaning for one generation after another, in different contexts, for audiences with different mind-sets and needs–even though the text still speaks with the same words. The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway and War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy got attention over and over.

Also high on the classics list were Scott Fitzgerald’s The Last Tycoon and King Solomon’s Mines by H. Rider Haggard.

Health and Medical

Health and Medical titles found in the top spot include The Inflammation Syndrome by Jack Challern (Health, Pain, Challem) with Dynamic Aging by Katy Bowman and The Memory Bible by Gary Small getting regular attention. These titles were not only frequently checked out but also renewed:  The End of Alzheimer’s by Dale Bredesen, Mind Over Meds by Andrew Weil, Good Can Fix It by Mehmet Oz and Glow 15 by Naomi Whittel.


If you’re a fan of audiobooks, you’re in a growing crowd. If you have never before been a fan of audiobooks, now is the perfect time to try them out. Whether you listen on your commute, in the gym or when you’re doing chores around the house, there’s probably an audio to maximize your productivity. Lovers & Players by Jackie Collins (COL), Next by Michael Vrichton (CRI), Outlander by Diana Gabaldon (GB) got a lot of attention. Also popular is Game of Thrones by George Martin (MAR), The Divide by Nicholas Evans (EVA) and Married Lovers by Jackie Collins (COL).


You enjoy listening to stories and we listen to you. We have added these Playaways to highlight the favorites enjoyed in 2018. In the Playaway collection, find The Woman in the Window by A. J. Finn, An American Marriage by Tayari Jones, The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah, Circe by Madeline Miller, The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware, The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang, There There by Tommy Orange, and Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover. I could devote paragraphs to the narrators for these titles, suffice it to say they are ones deserving to be heard as you walk, tread-mill, meditate or engage in relaxation.

By Dr. Leroy Hommerding
Beach Library Director