Saturday, November 27, 2010

'Best Books' lists

The year-end 'Best Books' lists are coming out. I love these lists because I love books, and not because I want to rank them, but because the lists always introduce me to some new books and remind me of books I'm already aware of and have yet to read.

For instance, there seems to be consensus that Isabel Wilkerson's The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration is a wonderful book. I was also happy to be reminded of Marlon James' The Book of Night Women. I kept noticing the arresting book cover at my local library and when I returned to take it out I learned something new: libraries often have new books that rotate out and are not part of their collection. I always assumed if you saw a book at the library it was part of the system's collection. The Guardian's list also introduced to me a fascinating-sounding book mentioned by several writers: The Hare with Amber Eyes: A Family's Century of Art and Loss by Edmund de Waal.

Mysteries/thrillers/suspense don't often make it on such lists, but Janet Maslin, one of the New York Times book reviewers, gives kudos to two: A Faithful Place by Tana French and Lee Child's 61 Hours. I don't see a list by Marilyn Stasio, the newspaper's crime fiction reviewer, but other reviewers there list their books and there is the editors' 100 Notable Books of 2010 listing. The 10 best books of the year listing comes out later.

Geez, I love books.

PS New poll to the right. Thanks for voting!

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