20 Books for 2012

I'm a big fan of lists, and particularly year-end lists.  A simple Google search will probably direct you to several different personal blogs on which I have published my end-of-year favorite music lists over the past eight years or so.  For me, lists are intended both as a form of self-analysis and as recommendations for my (modest, random) readership. 

I am also a bit unconventional with these lists.  I care less about the year that something was made than the year that I first experienced it.  So, on the following list, you will find my 20 favorite books that I read (for the first time) in 2012.  Some of the titles were published this year, others were written over a half-century ago.  But they are all great books that you should read, and they are all, incidentally, in HCPL's catalog.  So without further ado,

20 Books for 2012:


White Teeth by Zadie Smith (a gateway book if there ever was one, see below)


The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen


Cathedral by Raymond Carver


Bright Lights, Big City by Jay McInerney


Zeitoun by Dave Eggers


The Floating Opera & The End of the Road by John Barth


A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again by David Foster Wallace


Post Office by Charles Bukowski


Everything that Rises Must Converge by Flannery O'Connor


Short Cuts by Raymond Carver (previously)


Pulphead by John Jeremiah Sullivan


NW by Zadie Smith


Goodbye, Columbus & Five Short Stories by Philip Roth


Every Love Story is a Ghost Story: A Life of David Foster Wallace by D.T. Max


The Autograph Man by Zadie Smith


Fun Home by Alison Bechdel


The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie


Fear of Music by Jonathan Lethem


The Crying of Lot 49 by Thomas Pynchon


Eating the Dinosaur by Chuck Klosterman


Thanks for reading.  I hope there's something in this list that has piqued your interest.  Click on the image or title to reserve a copy of any of these books today.