Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Year in Books

I read 20 books in 2009. This down from 24 in 2008, 26 in 2007, 32 in 2006, and a whopping 34 in '05. How am I reading less now that my kids are older? Maybe because I'm older and heading to bed earlier, or because I no longer pause in the middle of the day to read for pleasure. Or I'm having trouble finding the good stuff--I started many books this year only to deem them not worth finishing.

Nevertheless, I read some books worth talking about. Standouts include:

Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert
The Monsters of Templeton by Lauren Groff
Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl
Seven Types of Ambiguity by Elliot Perlman
Zeitoun by Dave Eggers

I see now that the list is half fiction, half non. Though I write primarily nonfiction, I enjoy--and learn from--all types of writers and styles. If it's good, it's good. I want to be that kind of writer: solidly good. The kind you pause for, rather than fly through, because you know they will reward you. Maybe that will be my New Year's resolution.

Meanwhile, I need some good reading material for '10, especially novels for my bedside. Any suggestions?

4 comments:

  1. If you loved Seven Types of Ambiguity by Elliot Perlman, I highly recommend his other books, Three Dollars and a collection of short stories, The Reasons I Won't Be Coming. Completely different to Seven Types but the writing is still beautiful.

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  2. I did love that book. I think it's the longest book I ever finished because I wanted to. I've read about half of The Reasons I Won't Be Coming, which is indeed lovely, as you say, and I'll definitely check out the other. Thanks for the recommendations.

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  3. I just finished Zeitoun and really enjoyed it!! I tried Eggers first book and stopped about 40 pages short of finishing it though... just couldn't take any more.

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  4. Erin: try "What is the What" by Eggers. It's outstanding. And thanks for visiting!

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