Table of Contents
What’s better than a good book? A good book written by your neighbor (or former neighbor). Brew up a batch of your favorite tea or coffee and get ready to meet your next read, because we’re talking about locally written books in San Diego.
- “The Vanishing Half” by Brit Bennett | Release date: June 2, 2020 | The Oceanside-born author tells the story of identical twins who separate as teens + deal with their racial identity very differently.
- “Endless Blue Sky” by Josh Turner | Release date: Oct. 1, 2018 | A look at self-medication + the limits of sunshine, told through the narrative of Jeff Ashby.
- “One Tiger One Teen” by Pete Peterson | Release date: April 1, 2020 | A 17-year-old wants to catch a tiger and release it as his senior prank, but things don’t go as planned.
- “How to Set Yourself on Fire” by Julia Dixon Evans | Release date: May 8, 2018 | When Sheila’s grandmother dies, she inherits a box of love letters from a man who’s not her grandfather.
- “The Dawn Patrol” by Don Winslow | Release date: June 16, 2009 | The Julian-based author tells the story of an avid surfer + private investigator who gets the ride of his life while exploring a case.
For the family
- “Flash Facts” by Mayim Bialik | Release date: Feb. 2, 2021 | The San Diego-born actress + neuroscientist curates stories to answer some of your burning questions — with some help from the Scarlet Speedster.
- “When Mom Feels Great Then We Do Too” written by Phyllis Schwartz + illustrated by Siski Kalla| Release date: Sept. 2, 2022 | The Encinitas-based author teaches families how small gestures can help a parent battling cancer.
- “Once Upon a Forest” written + illustrated by Pam Fong | Release date: Feb. 8, 2022 | A marmot helps show kindness to animals + the environment by helping a forest recover from a wildfire.
- “The Spirit of Chicano Park/El Espíritu del Parque Chicano” written by Beatrice Zamora + illustrated by Meza Maira | Release date: April 20, 2020 | A bilingual story of two children learning about the creation of the historic park in Logan Heights, founded in 1970.
- “Freddie vs. the Family Curse” by Tracy Badua | Release date: May 3, 2022 | A historically + culturally-based story of a Filipino-American boy that teams up with his ancestors to break a generational curse.
- “Icky Micky” written by Victoria Bennett + illustrated by Mike Motz | Release date: July 8, 2022 | This rhyming book by the Carmel Valley author follows a boy trying to discover why gets called a gross nickname.
- “The Lorax” by Dr. Seuss | Release date: Aug. 12, 1971 | The environmentally-friendly book is believed to have drawn inspiration from La Jolla, where the author once lived.
Learn something new
- “See You at San Diego: An Oral History of Comic-Con, Fandom, and the Triumph of Geek Culture” by Mathew Klickstein | Release date: Sept. 6, 2022 | Travel through time and discover how the local celebration became a home for many voices.
- “Slave Revolt on Screen: The Haitian Revolution in Film and Video Games” by Alyssa Goldstein Sepinwall | Release date: May 28, 2021 | The Cal State San Marcos professor analyzes how films + video games have depicted the slave revolt with focus on the Haitian Revolution.
- “Abandoned San Diego” by Jessica D. Johnson | Release date: Feb. 25, 2019 | Discover local history by visiting sites in various states of deterioration.
- “Sam the Cooking Guy: Between the Buns” by Sam “The Cooking Guy” Zien | Release date: May 17, 2022 | The local chef, restaurateur, and YouTube star teaches you to make burgers, sandwiches, tacos, burritos, hot dogs + more.
Part of a series
- “Then She Vanished” by T. Jefferson Parker | Release date: Aug. 11, 2020 | The most recent installment of the Roland Ford series follows the private investigator as he searches for a rising politician’s missing wife.
- “The Drama Club: Senior Year” by Denise J Smith | Release date: Jan. 15, 2021 | Six teens spend their final year of high school performing in the drama club and confronting issues like racism + homophobia.
- “Balboa Firefly” by Jack Trolley | Release date: 1994 | The first book in a 4-part series following fast-paced police sergeant Tommy Donahoo.
- “The Sea Fairies” by L. Frank Baum | Release date: 1911 | This installment in “The Oz Series” draws inspiration from Coronado, where Baum spent many winters.
- “A Shadow Cast in Dust” by Ben Johnson | Release date: May 11, 2014 | The first of the “Webworld Trilogy,” Stewart Zanderson escapes his captors with a mysterious knife — set in Golden Hill.
- “Last Redemption” by Matt Coyle | Release date: Nov. 30, 2021 | The eighth — and most recent — entry in the Rick Cahill series features the protagonist fighting for his life so he can witness the birth of his first child.
- “Blood of the Band: An Ipai Family Story” by David L. Toler Jr. | Release date: Nov. 1, 2015 | A story of the Ipai — aka Kumeyaay — the native people of northern San Diego County and their history with our land.
- “They Poured Fire on Us From the Sky: The True Story of Three Lost Boys from Sudan” by Judy A. Bernstein, Alephonsion + Benson Deng, and Benjamin Ajak | Release date: 2005 | The story of two brothers + a cousin who escaped from Sudan’s civil war.
- “Angel Blue: A Song of Redemption” by Forrest Lang | Release date: June 27, 2022 | A former foster child learns to accept himself and finds success after his time serving in Iraq.
- “Float Me Away, Floodwaters” by Adam Gnade | Release date: Oct. 5, 2020 | The San Diego-born author takes a look at life outside of the city, in small towns that have been largely forgotten.
Need more recommendations? Stop by Warwick’s, Mysterious Galaxy Bookstore, La Playa Books, or shop used at Verbatim Books, to get expert advice from San Diego’s local booksellers. 📚