Sunday, September 30, 2012

Best Books of 2012 - at the Three-Quarters Mark

Three-quarters of the way through 2012 already, and I'm finding that my "Best Of" lists are beginning to solidify quicker than in past years.  That might be because this year's lists are limited to books published between October 1, 2011 and December 1, 2012 rather than being open to everything I read during the calendar year.  This is what it looks like as of September 30 (with changes highlighted):


1.     Edge of Dark Water – Joe Lansdale - East Texas redneck noir at its finest
2.     The Angel Makers – Jessica Gregson – Hungarian women react badly to the aftermath of World War I
3.     The Headmaster's Wager Vincent Lam – Betting it all on one throw of the dice
4.     Canada Richard Ford – Some borders are forever
5.     Heading Out to Wonderful Robert Goolrick – Spare me the good old days
6.     The Solitary House Lynn Shepherd – Period mystery using many Bleak House characters
7.     The Sense of an Ending Julian Barnes – Run that past me again
8.     The World without You Joshua Henkin – One family's Fourth of July fireworks
9.     A Blaze of Glory Jeff Shaara – What could have been but for one bullet
10.  The Beautiful Mystery Louise Penny – Monkish murder in a monastry


1.     The One – R.J. Smith – “the life and music of James Brown”
2.     Game Over – Bill Moushey, Bob Dvorchak – the horror of Jerry Sandusky and his enablers lives on
3.     Private Empire – Steve Coll – “ExxonMobil and American Power”
4.     The End of Your Life Book Club – Will Schwalbe – Loving books to the finish line
5.     Visiting Tom – Michael Perry – Gifts from a village elder
6.     Holy Ghost Girl – Donna M. Johnson – growing up while following a tent preacher from town to town
7.     Wild – Cheryl Strayed – one woman’s hike for her life
8.     Taking Flak – Dan Pastorini – Frank memoir from a Houston Oiler quarterback
9.     This Mobius Strip of Ifs Mathias B. Freese – Essays and memories from a thinker
10.     The End of IllnessDavid B. Agus, M.D. – alternative medicine and new technology combine


  1. I have wanted to read The Sense of an Ending for a long while now, and you have pushed me over the edge.
    Gotta read it.

  2. Don't miss out on Sense of an Ending, Cip...and let me know your take on the book when you're done. I've heard so many different interpretations of the plot that my head is still spinning.