Wednesday, December 03, 2008

New York Times 10 Best Books of 2008

The New York Times has cut its list of 100 notable books to a Top Ten for 2008, comprised of five fiction and five nonfiction titles:

Fiction Titles:

Dangerous Laughter: Thirteen Stories - Steven Milhauser

A Mercy - Toni Morrison

Netherland - Joseph O'Neill

2666 - Roberto BolaƱo

Unaccustomed Earth - Jhumpa Lahiri

Nonfiction Titles:

The Dark Side: The Inside Story of How the War on Terror Turned Into a War on American Ideals - Jane Mayer

The Forever War - Dexter Filkins

Nothing to Be Frightened Of - Julian Barnes

This Republic of Suffering:
Death and the American Civil War - Drew Gilpin Faust

The World Is What It Is
The Authorized Biography of V.S. Naipaul - Patrick French
I've only read one of the ten, This Republic of Suffering, definitely one of my favorites of the year. This is a book that puts the massive loss of life during the American Civil War into perspective for modern readers. I highly recommend this one to even casual fans of American history writing.

Interestingly, maybe amazingly is the right word, according to, " Also, Wednesday, The New York Times announced its 10 best books for 2008. Nine of them, including Toni Morrison's "A Mercy" and Jhumpa Lahiri's "Unaccustomed Earth," were published by Random House Inc."

Take a look at the list I linked to and tell me which book is not under the Random House umbrella. Does it strike anyone else as unlikely that one publishing house could possibly produce nine of the ten best books of the year? I'm just saying...


  1. Random House is big.....

    I've only read Netherland, and I wasn't that crazy about it. Dakota, on the other hand, loved it.

  2. Obviously, Dakota has good taste in books. :-)