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Books, 2009

The 33 books I read last year:

Scarpetta by Patricia Cornwell
Little Bee by Chris Cleave
Boy Toy by Barry Lyga
Flipping Out by Marshall Karp
Bloodthirsty by Marshall Karp
The Forger's Spell by Edward Dolnick
Lullaby by Chuck Palahniuk
Blind Eye by James B. Stewart
Ablutions by Patrick deWitt
Snuff by Chuck Palahniuk
Running from the Devil by James Frevelatti
Dark Places by Gillian Flynn
Phases of Gravity by Dan Simmons
[Title Redacted] by Marshall Karp*
Show me the Sky by Nicholas Hogg
The Dart League King by Keith Lee Morris
Buffalow Lockjaw by Greg Ames
The Little Sleep by iain Banks
The Spellman Files by Lisa Lutz
Evil at Heart by Chelsea Cain
Fear the Worst by Linwood Barclay
This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper
Curse of the Spellman by Lisa Lutz
Carter Beats the Devil by Glen David Gold
Glover's Mistake by Nick Laird
Revenge of the Spellmans by Lisa Lutz
The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein
Huge by James W. Fuerst
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Downtown Owl by Chuck Klosterman
The Scarpetta Factor by Patricia Cornwell
e2 by Matt Beaumont
Eating the Dinosaur by Chuck Klosterman

* I know the title of this book, but I can't tell you. One of the main perks of working for a fabulous author is being able to cajole him into sending you the draft of his next book, coming to a bookstore near you, with a title and everything, early this summer. You should read his first three books now to get ready.

The ones I think you should read:

Little Bee by Chris Cleave. I think I said before that for the first third of this book I thought it was possibly the most amazing thing I had ever read. The rest of it didn't quite hold up to the beginning, but still worth reading.

Boy Toy by Barry Lyga. Good book. About a teenager, which I don't usually like, but not at all a book for teenagers, at least not exclusively.

Ablutions by Patrick deWitt. Strangely compelling, and I am at a loss to explain why. I was put off by the style for the first three pages, and then completely absorbed.

Carter Beats the Devil by Glen David Gold. Old, I know, but I missed it when it was new. One of those books that creates such a rich, deep, detailed world that you stop reading and find yourself blinking and squinting for a minute, trying to remember which reality is the one in which you participate.

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. If you only know Austen in screenplay form, you have been greatly deprived. And if you have a Kindle or iPhone or other electronic reader, all her books are free.

Now, what's the best book you read last year? I only have twelve in my To Read pile and being so low makes me nervous.

Comments (31)

If you haven't read The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, I think you would love it.

Also, Olive Kitteridge, The Calling, and The Blind Assassin.

I cannot WAIT for Marhsall's new book!! And I found him through YOUR blog, so give yourself a pat on the 'ol back. ;-)

I'm re-reading Carter Beats the Devil right now! You're so right - fantastic book. I'll have to check out a few of those others!

Live and Other impossible Pursuits-Ayalet Waldman

I love Carter Beats the Devil.

Have you read Kavalier and Clay by Micheal Chabon? It's another favorite of mine.

One Thousand White Women by Jim Dodd
The Help by Kathryn Stockett
My Life in France by Julia Child

Maybe my first time commenting, not sure.

If you haven't read The Lovely Bones (Alice Sebold, the movie version opens very soon) or The Secret Life of Bees (Sue Monk Kidd), please do so. You won't be sorry.

Wonderful books!

"The Three Musketeers" by Alexandre Dumas. I thought it was going to be the most boring book ever, but it was a total blast. I started it right before my second kid was born and after she arrived and was safely ensconced in her Moses basket, I'd hide under the covers of my bed with a light and try to turn the pages as quietly as possible. It was that good.

I would second The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.

I second the vote for The Help - great book! Two other good ones are People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks and The Book Theif by Markus Zusak. Happy reading!

I loved Little Bee. Haunting, but I still loved it.

I know everyone is saying it, but my recent favorite is also The Help. I'm still thinking about it every day and I finished it awhile ago.

Into the Woods and The Likeness, both by Tana French.

Well, since I get many of my book recommendations from your husband, my list is very similar to yours! I have become fans of Gillian Flynn, Chelsea Cain, Marshall Karp and Lisa Lutz through one or both of you!

IN addition I always also read any new books by Jonathan Kellerman, Faye Kellerman, JJOdi Picoult, Dan Koontz, Janet Evanovich, James Patterson, Stephen King, John Sanford,Harlan Coben, Patrica Cornwell (and a few dozen other authors)as I have been reading them for years and feel some loyalty and obligation to them. I also read the whole "True Blood" series by Charlaine Harris (fun easy books! Good for the beach)

Some of my favorite books from the past year that I recommend:

Perfection, Julie Metz
Zeitoun, Dave Eggers
Nine Lives, Dan Baum
Pieces of Me, Paul Sanchez
Handle With Care, Jodi Picoult
The Sound of Building Coffins, Louis Maistros

Here, There Be Dragons by James A. Owen
(If you like it there are three others.)

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins and its sequal
Catching Fire

I think they are all technically young adult fiction, but I was completely entertained by the Dragon series and riveted for Hunger Games and friend. I gave them all to adults and kids alike for Christmas and people were pleased :)


I don't keep track. I think that I read about 6 books. The Blind Side was my favorite, but I could have done without the endless football chatter in places and I LOVE FOOTBALL. I find it hard to understand how you and Chris have the time to read so much with two young children.

Thanks for the recommendations! What genre are these books? (Mystery, history, etc)

How do you find time to read with a child that doesn't nap and sleeps in your bed? You are my hero. You probably don't watch nearly as much TV as I do, though!

My to-read list is already way too long - I'll have to come back to this later! Stoked about the new Karp book though - I've really enjoyed his so far!

Definitely the best book I read this year was Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill (goes by the title Someone Knows My Name in the US!) I also really liked The Birth House (Ami McKay). I read 22 novels in 2009, and am aiming for 30 or so this year.

I have read a few books on your list. My favorites were Dark Places and The Art of Racing in the Rain.

I recommend reading "The Hate List" by Jennifer Brown. It's a more adult and darker "Mean Girls" minus Lohhan.

One of my all-time favorite books is "How to Kill a Rockstar" by Tiffanie Debartolo.

I'm not sure how new these books are but they are both great reads!!!

Death With Interruptions by Jose Saramago.

Carter Beats the Devil is on my ever-growing list.

I'm with BunnyBear -- the Hunger Games and Catching Fire were fun reads. I just started China Mieville's The City and the City, which is promising so far.

I am currently reading the new Stephen King - Under the Dome. It is very good so far...and REALLY long! I have seen King on your book lists before, so I would recommend you try this one out.

Dear Husband by Joyce Carol Oates and The Lazarus Project by Aleksandar Hemon. Fantastic writers with brilliant minds.

Discover that I have only read two of these - did not like Little Bee at all but P&P is always good value.

"Gilead" by Marilynn Robinson was the best book I read last year - but it is hard going and a bit thin on plot.

I also really enjoyed "American Wife" by Curtis Sittenfield and Charlotte Mosley's collection of letters between the Mitford sisters.

The Man in the Dark, Paul Auster. Very good, unexpectedly so for me. I'm going to read the rest of his stuff now.

I'm reading The Help for Jonniker/Jenni's Book Lushes online club so that's the next one for me.

Best Book I read last year was "Boundaries" by Cloud & Townsend. Life Changing for me!

HI! I have never kept track of what I read specifically. One of my goals is to do that--inspired by you. (and Chris)

I do recall reading these books:

Scarpetta by Patricia Cornwell
Flipping Out by Marshall Karp
Bloodthirsty by Marshall Karp
The Scarpetta Factor by Patricia Cornwell
A Quiet Belief in Angels--can't remember
The Lost Symbol--Dan Brown
All of the Twilight saga stuff
Finger Lickin' Fifteen Janet Evanovich
Plum Spooky--Janet Evanovich
Also books by Carly Phillips, Julie Leto, Janelle Denson, Leslie Kelley

And I predict the name of that mysterious Marshall Karp book is Cut, Paste, Kill

Have a great day!

Like a few others I also highly recommend The Hunger Games and the sequel Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins. I was hesitant to read these at first since they are classified as YA but was absolutely blown away in the best possible way. I now have my Mom and sister reading them.

Don't let "Snuff" fool you, Palahniuk has more to offer. If you haven't read read "Fight Club" and "Choke" you should do so immediately.

(He should really start paying me for this kind of thing.)

Hi! If you haven't yet read them, the Thursday Next series is hysterically funny. Sort of like Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy with a girl. I am officially jealous of you if you haven't read them yet and start doing so. They are the bomb!

The History of Love was a beautiful, heart-pulling read. Bel Canto was both suspenseful and elegantly written.I also enjoyed Chelsea Handler's My Horizontal Life, essays chronicling her one night stands. The Suzanne Collins' series, starting with The Hunger Games was a fun, quick read. Someone mentioned The Book Thief, and I really enjoyed that, too. Same for People of the Book. And, of course, if you haven't read it, Geek Love is one of my all time favorites.

Happy reading!

I love being recommended new, never-heard-of books. Thanks!

Among my favourites for last year were:

After dark - Haruki Murakami

Imperium - Robert Harris (which was absolutely brilliant and a page turner extraordinaire which I did not expect at all)

and if you like non-fiction:

Nudge - Thaler and Sunstein

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