Monday, January 29, 2007


Well I actually did a rough draft of the next chapter of Reading For My Life. I know, you are saying, "Yeah, yeah." But really all I have to do is edit/re-write/etc. and you will have it.

Meanwhile, as promised, here are the books I liked most in 2006. They were not all published in 2006. They are culled from the books I read in 2006. I am proud to say that I read more books last year than ever before: 141. That is almost 12 per month. I impressed even myself.

1. The Thin Place, Kathryn Davis. Magical, mystical novel about modern times.
2. Ursula, Under, Ingrid Hill. Amazing fictional history of a northern Michigan family and what America really is.
3.Cryptonomicon, Neal Stephenson. More historical fiction combined with modern techno realities.
4. With Billie, Julia Blackburn. One righteous biography of Billie Holiday.
5. The Dream of Scipio, Iain Pears. Historical fiction again but which addresses what it takes to keep civilization going.
6. The Patron Saint of Liars, Ann Patchett. Very real and deep fiction about being a woman.
7. Small Island, Andrea Levy. Lives of Jamaican immigrants in post WWII England.
8. The Big Sky, A B Guthrie Jr. The best western I have ever read, hard to find, try used bookstores.
9. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, Jonathan Safran Foer. The only fiction about 9/11 that I could believe. The coolest kid in fiction today.
10. White Ghost Girls, Alice Greenway. Incredible writing about sisters growing up in the Far East during the Vietnam War.
11. The Tender Bar, J R Moehringer. This is what memoir should be.
12. Brick Lane, Monica Ali. More immigrants in England, this time from Bangladesh. A great story.
13. There Will Never Be Another You, Carolyn See. If you like this author (I do), this is one of her best.
14. The King's English, Betsy Burton. The story of an independent bookstore. Reads like a page-turner novel.
15. Gifts, Ursula Le Guin. Supposed to be Young Adult fiction, but whatever she writes, it is about how to have peace on earth.


  1. Hey! I read 141 books in 2006, too. Not only that, but I definitely share your love of Oskar Schell. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close was a great book. I loved that little guy. Did you read Safran Foer's wife's book? 'The History of Love' by Nicole Krause was wonderful, as well. After reading both books, I was not surprised to learn that their authors were married.

  2. History of Love is coming up in one of my reading groups. I bought it the minute it came out and even went to hear Nicole Krause read, but never read it. Now I will!
    Yes they are married and had a baby and I hope they are not too busy to write more books.
    A little amazing that we both read 141 books. I left you a note about that at your blog today.