Saturday, December 31, 2011

Reading is Fundamental: 2011 Edition

A selection of books I read this year below. Tell me what you read and and would recommend for 2012 in comments.

  1. The Imperfectionists, by Tom Rachman

  2. Wishful Drinking, by Carrie Fisher

  3. Nebraska: Stories, by Ron Hansen

  4. A Drinking Life, by Pete Hamill

  5. About a Boy, by Nick Hornby

  6. Impatient with Desire, by Gabrielle Burton

  7. My Antonia, by Willa Cather

  8. The Indifferent Stars Above, by Daniel James Brown

  9. Love and Other Impossible Pursuits, by Ayelet Waldman

  10. On Persephone's Island: A Sicilian Journal, by Mary Taylor Simeti

  11. Imagining Argentina, by Lawrence Thornton

  12. David Copperfield, by Charles Dickens

  13. Howards End, by E.M. Forster

  14. Twilight, by Stephanie Meyer

  15. Major Pettigrew's Last Stand, by Helen Simonson

  16. Homer and Langley, by E.L. Doctorow

  17. Devil in the White City, by Erik Larson

  18. Sarah's Key, by Tatiana de Rosnay

  19. The Handmaid's Tale, by Margaret Atwood

  20. Open City, by Teju Cole

  21. A Man Called Intrepid, by William Stevenson

  22. Heliopolis, by James Scudamore

  23. Mr. Peanut, by Adam Ross

  24. Chavs: The Demonization of the Working Class, by Owen Jones

  25. The Fall of Rome & The End of Civilization, by Bryan Ward Perkins

  26. Just Kids, by Patti Smith

  27. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, by Mark Haddon

  28. Envy: The Seven Deadly Sins, by Joseph Epstein

  29. Against Love: A Polemic, by Laura Kipnis

  30. The Leftovers, by Tom Perrotta

  31. In the Garden of Beasts, by Erik Larson

  32. Prep, by Curtis Sittenfeld


Anonymous said...

Quite a list; some of those books I read 20-years ago!

My recommendations:
"Unbroken" Laura Hillenbrand. You know it's a good book when, after repeated, "....just one more page...", you look up from your bed and see the sun coming up and you have to get up in 15-minutes to go to work! That good.

"Fatso", 20-year old book by Art Donovan who played for the Baltimore Colts in the 50's & 60's. Re-read it because he was in the news last August when his stolen championship ring turned up and recovered by police. Funny as hell. There's a reason Letterman kept having him on his show. Enjoyed re-reading it!

"Packing for Mars" by Mary Roach, the only book about science (getting to Mars) that has you laughing and enlightened.

"Matterhorn", by Karl Marlantes, a book I picked up because James Fallows said it was the best book of 2010, and I trust Fallows. He was right. Turns out Karl and I have a few friends and things in common. He was interviewed on NPR yesterday on the subject of killing in war. It's a novel. It's long. It's terrific. It's also now required reading at West Point. (FYI: Marlantes was a Marine in Vietnam and earned the Bronze Star, two Navy Commendation Medals for valor, two Purple Hearts, and ten air medals - and the Navy Cross! And he was only there one year. Like all wars, this one got to him.)

When you finish "Matterhorn", pick up Jon Krakauer's book, "Where Men Win Glory" about Pat Tillman and notice the similarities!!!

There are more, but I have no time. but note that Robert Caro's 4th of five terrific books on Lyndon Johnson is going to be released in May. Title is "The Passage of Power". His focus is 1958 to 1964, from the time Johnson began seeking the presidency, to becoming president after JFK's assassination. I'm guessing book #5 will cover the rise of Goldwater, the civil rights legislation and the Vietnam war.

acrannymint said...

You actually read Twilight? I read Devil in the White City some time ago and liked it. I also read his book about Crippen.

Anonymous said...

The End by Ian Kershaw about the last year of Nazi Germany and why no one, top to bottom stopped fighting until Hitler was dead. Talk about not being able to quit a relationship.

The Churchills - In Love and War by Mary Lovell. A social history of the Churchill family and through them of British nobility. Part history, part gossipy romp through the bedchambers.

Anonymous said...

Got Swamplandia! and 1493 last night.

Comments don't seem to be added - this is a test.

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