That Boot! That Book!

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MY TOP 10 FAVORITE BOOKS OF 2012

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It was damned hard to pluck this list down to 10 but, in the end, these very special books were by far my favorite reading experiences of this year.  And if you read this blog regularly, you know I had a serious girl crush on Cheryl Strayed for months after reading WILD.  I even lost my ability to speak like a human in her book-signing line at The Ferry Building.  *sigh*

1.  WILD by Cheryl Strayed

2.  THE TICKING IS THE BOMB by Nick Flynn

3.  BEING FLYNN by Nick Flynn

4.  THE SENSE OF AN ENDING by Julian Barnes

5.  THE DESCENDANTS by Kaui Hart Hemmings

6.  RULES OF CIVILITY by Amor Towles

7.  THE LIFEBOAT by Charlotte Rogan

8.  FROM OUR HOUSE by Lee Martin

9.  THE YELLOW BIRDS by Kevin Powers

10.  GONE GIRL by Gillian Flynn

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What fabulous books made your top 10 list?

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31 thoughts on “That Boot! That Book!

  1. Erika Marks

    This time of year is so hard because I am reminded of all the wonderful books I’ve missed AND I know there will be more in the new year–so when can a girl catch up???

    The Lifeboat is still on my must list–and I think I am the only person who hasn’t read WILD yet so I think I just came up with my first New Year’s resolution!!

    My list would have to include An Available Man, The Silent Land and Reading My Father.

    1. Teri

      I’m looking that one up right now —- thanks, Bobbi. And good luck with your move. Like Downith said over at your place, you need to have a very LOUD moving out party.

  2. CJ Rice (@leapof)

    Zazen by Veselka
    Dora: A Headcase by Yuknavitch
    The Devil all the Time by Pollack
    Open City by Cole
    Light in August by Faulkner
    Near to the Wild Heart by Lispector
    The Round House by Erdrich
    The Sense of an Ending by Barnes
    Train Dreams: a novella by Johnson
    Crazy Brave: A Memoir by Harjo

    These are the books I finished this year that I found myself shaken by.

  3. Josephine

    yes, Wild, yes Nick Flynn, yes the lifeboat, (i also finally read and loved the adderall diaries this year, can i count that even though it’s not a 2012 release?) here’s some more i liked:
    Swimming Studies (leanne shapton)
    Elsewhere (richard russo)
    Fiction Ruined My Family (jeanne darst)
    The Man in the Empty Boat (mark salzman)
    Dora, a Headcase (lidia yuknavitch)
    Some Assembly Required (anne lamott)
    99 days (bill clegg)

    and, of course:
    the mermaid collector (erika marks)
    finding me in france (bobbie french)
    living arrangments (laura maylene walter)
    and i haven’t gotten it yet, but i’m sure i’ll love Fifty Shades of Funny (sherry stanfa-stanley & lisa golden…and a few others)

    1. Teri

      Ahhh yes. I loved loved loved your “of course” list too!!! Maybe I need to make a top 50?

      It was a strange year, reading-wise. In addition to the books I loved, I also have a ridiculously high stack of books I couldn’t get into, many I gave up on, more than usual.

  4. macdougalstreetbaby

    I’m only 30 pages in but I’m fairly certain THE MARRIAGE PLOT is going to be high on my list. I remember how much you loved WILD. Thank you for the reminder. It’s next on my TBR pile.

  5. Jennine G.

    In no particular order:

    The Winter of Our Disconnect – Susan Maushart
    11/22/63 – Stephen King
    On Writing – Stephen King
    Driving With Dead People – Monica Halloway
    The Color of Water – James McBride
    Eden Close – Anita Shreeve
    Les Miserables – Victor Hugo
    Their Eyes Were Watching God – Zora Neale Hurston
    The Circle Maker – Mark Batterson

    And, of course, the summer read that brought me to the blogosphere and all of you – The Forest for the Trees by Betsy Lerner.

  6. Averil Dean

    GONE GIRL – Gillian Flynn
    THE SENSE OF AN ENDING – Julian Barnes
    HIGH LONESOME – Joyce Carol Oates
    A FAIR MAIDEN – Joyce Carol Oates (I could go on . . .)
    WHITE OLEANDER – Janet Fitch
    HEARTSICK – Chelsea Cain
    THE BEST AMERICAN NOIR – Edited by James Ellroy and Otto Penzler
    DEFENDING JACOB – William Landay
    THE FACE THIEF – Eli Gottlieb

    And I have my copies of THE MERMAID COLLECTOR and 50 SHADES OF FUNNY which I’m dying to start, but am saving them as a reward for when my revisions are done.

    1. Teri

      I love your list, Averil. Love it. Just think, you can spend all of 2013 with JCO as well and still not finish all of her books. JCO = the gift that keeps on giving.

      And THE SENSE OF AN ENDING. My god, that book.

  7. Catherine

    I really liked Sarah Hall’s The Beautiful Indifference, and Laura’s Living Arrangements. Vanessa Gebbie’s A Coward’s Tale was very good. Ahh so was Chika Unigwe’s On Black Sisters’ Street. So many books this year, I can’t even remember them!

    1. Averil Dean

      The sad part about these lists is that I lose track altogether of when I read them. Was Laura’s book out this year? Why does it seem so long ago to me? Sheesh.

      Well, add LIVING ARRANGEMENTS to my list, too.

      1. LauraMaylene

        LIVING ARRANGEMENTS came out in late 2011. And oh wow! Just realized I forgot to mark its first publication birthday. Oops. (It does feel long ago, doesn’t it?)

    2. Teri

      I can’t remember all of mine either, Cat. I had to look back through my blog! And so many books I thought I read this year, I really read last year…. Where did 2012 go?

  8. Jennine G.

    Oh we’re we supposed to list ones published this year?! I listed good books I read in 2012. I read books as they hit me, but I don’t think any of my big reads were published in 2012.

    1. Teri Post author

      No, you don’t need to list books published this year. Only books you read this year!! Regarding LIVING ARRANGMENTS, I remembered it came out in 2011 and I read it the minute I got it (meaning last year).

      All of the books on my list were certainly NOT published this year…..

  9. JustAnotherEmpress

    THIS IS HOW YOU LOSE HER — Junot Diaz
    SOMEDAY THIS PAIN WILL BE USEFUL — Peter Cameron
    KILL YOU TWICE – Chelsea Cain
    GONE GIRL – Gillian Flynn
    WILD – Cheryl Strayed
    FORGE — Laurie Halse Anderson
    DORA — Lidia Yuknavitch
    THE FAULT IN OUR STARS – John Green

  10. girl in the hat

    You guys are in another league. Put me on the short bus. I’ve been reading the first chapter of A Visit from the Goon Squad for weeks now, years too late, trying to figure it out. Sheesh.

    1. Teri Post author

      Um, hello Anna, you are busy querying!! One thing at a time, my friend. The goon squad (which I almost just typed as the “good” squad) will still be there when you’re ready.

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