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Monday, December 5, 2011

Monday Discussion: Best Book You Read This Year Not Published in 2011

Just like last year, I am going to milk this best book thing on the Monday Discussion.  This week we will begin with the best book you read in 2011 that did NOT have a 2011 copyright.  Next week, I will compile the list for those of you who do not go back and follow the comments or read the archive.

Click here to see the recap of how people answered this question last year.

As usual, I will go first.  The best book I read in 2011 was from 2003, The Known World by Edward P. Jones.  I only finished it last month and have yet to get my review posted.  But I will before my final Top 10 books I read this year is published at the end of the month.

This just goes to show you that you can miss a book that appeared on every best list in the past (in this case 8 years ago), but then turn to it years later and absolutely love it.  I know I have been hammering this point home lately, but it is a key point.  With all of the frenzy for the current crop of "best" books, there will be a waiting list and people will need something to read while they wait.  previous years' "bests" are a great readalike option here.

Enough of me.  Bring on your favorite books read this year with a copyright date of 2010 or sooner. Nothing is off limits people.

I will compile the list next week but you can always access the Monday Discussion Archives here.


Alissa W said...

I have two. "Those who save us" by Jenna Blum is from 2000. And "The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie" by Alan Bradley is from 2009. Those who save us has really stayed with me, and I've also gotten all caught up on the Flavia de Luce series so it's a total tie for different reasons. I always have trouble selecting one title.

Jose said...

the things they carried, and life of pi.they have both stuck with me and i can remember them so vividly eventhough i read them in high school.

Bobbie said...

For best fiction - 1992's The Patron Saint of Liars by Ann Patchett, a beautifully written, deeply moving story of grace and meaning found in unlikely places and people. For best non-fiction - Mary Walton's superb 2010 biography of Alice Paul, A Woman's Crusade, which describes the sacrifice and suffering so many women went through to gain something so many take for granted, our right to vote.

Anonymous said...

I loved the YA series by Susan Beth Pfeffer about the moon being knocked off its normal path by a meteor, changing life on earth forever. The first book is, "Life as We Knew It." Also, I really loved "The Wolves in the Walls," and "The Graveyard Book," by Neil Gaiman

John BPL RA said...

The Jason Bourne series by Robert Ludlum. I was never a Robert Lublum fan in the past and only picked up these books after seeing the films. They are amazing. The use of amnesia as a metaphor for identity search has been used to death by authors yet it takes on new heights with these stories. The social-political commentary on government, society, and truth is far deeper than anything I've seen in spy novels.

Esther said...

My coworker Bobbie suggested I read a couple of books on my vacation to the Outer Banks last June. Since I am a slow reader of fiction and super busy, I just finished reading Sea-born Women by B.J. Mountford. I loved the pirate folklore woven with descriptions of landscapes I had actually visited.

Anonymous said...


The book not published in 2011
that I read this year and en-
joyed the most was 'The Art of
Racing in the Rain" by Garth
Stein, published in 2008. An
wonderful story about an extra-
ordinary dog and it's relation-
ship with it's owner that has
an ending to give you chills.

Kimberly said...

American Gods by Neil Gaiman. This book celebrated its tenth anniversary with a new edition this year, but I read the old edition just before the anniversary edition was released. I had not read the book before and if I hadn’t been working with a book group, I would not have read the book by choice as it is a stretch beyond my normal genre preferences. I didn’t immediately realize how terrific I considered this book for several months until one day I realized I was using it as a benchmark to describe many of the other books I was reading. Many of the settings were places with which I am well familiar and literary allusions abound, this book was enhanced by the availability of interviews with Neil Gaiman in which he talks about the influences that led to his telling of this tale.

Kathy BPL RA said...

With a copyright of 2009, the best book I read this year that was not published this year was "Homer and Langley" by E.L. Doctorow. I loved the idea of speculating about how the brothers ended up where they did with how much stuff they had. The fact that Doctorow strayed greatly from the historical facts did not bother me a bit - that's why it is fiction!

Donna said...

I've been reading real oldies this year and fell in love with the Lord Peter Wimsey series by Dorothy L. Sayers. Gaudy Night was the best of the bunch.

Sarah Elsewhere said...

"Shades of Milk and Honey" It was just the perfect mix of Jane Austen romance and magic. I've read a lot of books I've liked this year, but this is the only one I want to reread.

Betty said...

I have to mention "Major Pettigrew's Last Stand." The story was unusual, the characters were memorable and the writing was oh so fine! I've actually read it twice -- once for myself and once for book group. There are not many books that can stand up to two readings.

Italia said...

The Known World¿, by Edward P. Jones I just finished reading this book. Never have I read such a magnificent work of literature. The plot, which in and of itself is nothing short of brilliant, pales when compare to the masterfully, and uniquely brilliant ability possessed by EDWARD P JONES at storytelling. I have read many a book in my life, and those of you who know me on a personal basis are aware of my passion for the classics, particularly Nobel Price of Literature laureates, yet, I most confess, I have not find an author nor a story that comes even close to the mastery displayed in this work.