Sunday, January 1, 2012
Each January, as I compile, or at least revise, my new year's resolutions, I also take down my wall calendar and transfer the titles of the books I read during the year to my Book-Woman notebook, which I've maintained since 1997. I realize that the list isn't as complete as I wish. For example, I rarely list the works I read from the assignments on my syllabus for literature classes. Otherwise, I'd have Beowulf, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Paradise Lost, and more every year. I notice that I have listed several poetry books this year, but I know without a doubt that I read many more complete chapbooks and full collections of poetry this year. Rather than adding those here, I'll devote another post in a few days to add my favorite poetry of 2011. For now, here's how the list stacked up:
Steig Larsen, The Girl Who Played with Fire.
---. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest.
Wally Lamb, The Hour I First Believed.
Heidi W. Durrow. The Girl Who Fell from the Sky.
Patti Smith. Just Kids.
Stewart O'Nan, Songs for the Missing.
Nick Hornby, Slam.
Tim Peeler, Checking Out.
Jane Hamilton, Laura Rider's Masterpiece.
Suzanne Collins, Catching Fire.
Laura Dave, London Is the Best City in America.
Josh Bazell, Beat the Reaper.
Sharyn McCrumb, Devil Amongst the Lawyers.
Ann-Marie McDonald, Fall on Your Knees.
Glenn Cooper, Secret of the Seventh Sign.
Emma Donaghue, Room.
Helen Losse, Seriously Dangerous.
Sarah Addison Allen, Peachkeepers.
Neil Gaiman, Coraline.
Sioghan Fallon, You Know When the Men Are Gone.
Gary Shytengart, Super True Sad Love Story.
Nancy Horan, Loving Frank.
Paula McLain. The Paris Wife.
Gabrielle Hamilton, Blood, Bones, and Butter.
Sara Gruen, Ape House.
Jennifer Egan, A Visit from the Goon Squad.
Stacy Schiff, Cleopatra: A Life.
Ann Patchett, State of Wonders.
Glenn Cooper, Book of Souls.
Steve Martin, An Object of Beauty.
Lisa Genova, Left Neglected.
Nicole Krauss, Great House.
Eleanor Brown, The Weird Sisters.
Rudyard Kipling, The Jungle Book.
Tea Obrecht, The Tiger's Wife.
T. C. Boyle, The Women.
Silas House, Eli the Good.
Rebecca Hunt, Mr. Chartwell.
Firoozeh Dumas, Funny in Farsi.
Geraldine Brooks, Caleb's Crossing.
Jodi Picoult, Sing Me Home.
Ann Napolitano, A Good Hard Look.
Scott Owens, Something Knows the Moment.
Joshilyn Jackson, Backseat Saints.
William Kuhn, Reading Jackie.
Jessie Carty, Fat Girl.
Malaika Albrecht, Spill.
Lisa See, Dreams of Joy.
Deborah Rodriquez, A Cup of Friendship.
Wes Moore, The Other Wes Moore.
Pierre von Rooyen, Saturdays Are Gold.
Ken Follett, Fall of Giants.
Mark Haddon, A Spot of Bother.
Charles Frazier, Nightwoods.
Jonathan Franzen, Freedom.
Laura Schlessinger, The Care and Feeding of Husbands.
David Sedaris. Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk.
Hillary Jordan. When She Woke.
Brad Metzer, Book of Lies.
Alice Randall, The Wind Done Gone.
Adam Rex, The True Meaning of Smekday.
Neil Gaiman, Neverwhere.
Alan Bradley, Sweetness in the Bottom of the Pie.
That's the list for the year. I must add one book in progress: I'm just a little over halfway through IQ84, Haruki Murakami's fascinating story set in 1984 Tokyo. The book weighs in at a heft 1452 (at least the electronic version), but that shouldn't discourage anyone wanting an engrossing tale of two lives connected for twenty years--since the two were ten--that intersect in the strangest of world. It's an ideal book to read as I straddle 2011 and 2012. Meanwhile, my list for the coming year is already stacking up.