Monday, December 7, 2009

And so it begins ...

It is that time of the year. All those 'best of' lists. I have been on the lookout for my favorites - the 'best books of the year' lists from The Washington Post, The New York Times and The Economist. Those aren't all out yet (though NYT has published some lists on 'favorites from the year' of their regular reviewers).

But I did see a really interesting list on The Guardian, from the other side of the pond. The good folk at The Guardian have released a list of best books of the decade. (Please don't ask me whether the decade 'actually' ends in 2009 or 2010. I hated that argument during Y2K, and 10 years haven't changed my mind.)

Books of the Decade

By the way, are you one of those people that wonder what to call the decade of 2000's? If the decade before was the nineties, and the one before was the eighties, what is this one to be called? The Guardian has a suggestion. They call it the 'noughties'. Cute.

The list of Books of the Noughties has some really interesting ones. Many of them have been either reviewed or discussed here on Brick and Rope. Remember, these aren't meant to be the 'best' books of the decade. Only 'the books that defined the decade'. So there is a good bit of popular culture reflected. Here then, are some books that caught my eye -

The Tipping Point, by Malcolm Gladwell. I am a fan of the book, and of Gladwell in general.

Atonement, by Ian McEwan. I wrote a review of McEwan's most recent book yesterday. That book (On Chesil Beach) is no match for this, McEwan's masterpiece.

Nickel and Dimed, by Barbara Ehrenreich. You don't know the hidden economy of the poor in America till you read Ehrenreich.

The da Vinci Code, by Dan Brown. No comment.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time, by Mark Haddon. A phenomenal debut book. Which Haddon spoiled by writing his second.

The Kite Runner, by Khalid Husseini. I liked it well enough, but wasn't jumping out of my seat. Some friends didn't agree.

Eats, Shoots and Leaves, by Lynne Truss. The Guardian calls this 'the ultimate posh loo book'.

Freakonimics, by Steven Levitt. A good first book which the authors want to milk for whatever it's worth with the second book released in 2009 - Super Freakonomics.

Saturday, by Ian McEwan. The only author with two works on the list. Impressive.

The God Delusion, by Richard Dawkins. Was on my list of favorite reads of 2008. Remains one of my favorite non-fiction books of all time.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, by J.K. Rowling. You didn't really think they were going to skip Hogwarts, did you?

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