Wednesday, December 9, 2009

LA Times Picks its Best Books of 2009

The LA Times weighs in with its opinion on the best books of the 2009, with 25 books acknowledged in its fiction and poetry list, and another 25 in its nonfiction list. Here are some of the newspaper's selections:

  • The Angel's Game, Carlos Ruiz Zafon. The long-awaited follow-up novel by the author of The Shadow of the Wind, actually a "prequel" of sorts, tells the story of a struggling young writer in 1920s Barcelona.
  • The Book of Genesis Illustrated, R Crumb. An honest and powerful rendering of the Book of Genesis by famed illustrator.
  • Asterios Polyp, David Mazzucchelli. This graphic novel has hit several "Best of" lists recently, and it was just discussed on our blog yesterday in Day Eight of The 24 Days of Books.
  • The Collected Stories of Lydia Davis. This is another book that has hit several lists, and Ms. Davis read in Portland recently as part of the Literary Arts program. Thought-provoking "short shorts."
  • The Financial Lives of Poets, Jess Walter. This darkly funny novel by a Spokane writer is another book we blogged about recently.
  • Sunnyside, Glen David Gold. Charlie Chaplin stars in this epic-sized novel about early Hollywood and LA by the author of Carter Beats the Devil.
  • Too Much Happiness, Alice Munro. Not much left to be said about the latest short story collection from the master of short stories except why haven't you read it yet???
  • The Big Burn: Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire that Saved America, Timothy Egan. Another book we've blogged about recently by one of my all-time-favorite nonfiction writers. If you can't bring yourself to buy a hardbound book, pick up The Good Rain (a wonderful book about the history of the Pacific NW) or The Worst Hard Time (National Book Award winner about the Great American Dust Bowl), both in paperback now.
  • Changing My Mind: Occasional Essays, Zadie Smith. "Lively unselfconscious rigorous erudite collection" of essays on wide-ranging topics from the author of two novels I loved, White Teeth and On Beauty.
  • Crow Planet: Essential Wisdom from the Urban Wilderness, Lyanda Lynn Haupt. A lovely book by Seattle-based writer and naturalist. A link and another link here.
  • Eating Animals, Jonathan Safran Foer. Why eating animals is killing us and our planet. Day Two in The 24 Days of Books.
  • Dawn Light: Dancing with Cranes and Other Ways to Start Your Day, Diane Ackerman. Reflections on human interconnectedness with the planet by prolific author.
  • Stitches: A Memoir, David Small. Memoir in graphic novel format that has hit several "best of" lists. Illustrator of children's books recounts his upbringing and the literal and figurative scars inflicted by his parents.
  • Strength in What Remains: A Journey of Remembrance and Forgiveness, Tracy Kidder. Another story about the heroism inherent in ordinary people.
  • A Paradise built in Hell: The Extraordinary Communities that Arise in Disaster, Rebecca Solnit. I love titles of nonfiction books that so clearly spell out what the book is about.
Okay. There you have it. See you in the store soon to pick up this latest collection of must-reads! And judging from the weekend weather forecasts, this will be a perfect weekend for hunkering down with a great stack of books and a hot cup of tea, preferably with a kitty or two on your lap.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.