What did you read in 2011? Which books do you recommend?
|Reading in Rome|
Books Read in 2011:
- Bossypants, Tina Fey: This autobiography was amusing, but not laugh-out-loud hilarious. However, it does present what it means to be a woman in TV, and addresses the question of why there aren't more women comedians.
- The Year of Magical Thinking, Joan Didion: A memoir of grieving, Joan Didion wrote this in the year that her husband died, followed by her daughter dying a few months later.
- Guns, Germs and Steel, Jared Diamond
- One Day, David Nicholls: The narration follows a couple for one day each year, a nice concept. This book is all the rage in the UK, but I was underwhelmed in the end. A shame.
- Our Man in Havana, Graham Green: Supposedly hilarious, this British farce follows a loser-Brit who lives in Cuba and is accidentally pulled into the secret service. One of the few times when the British-American cultural divide is a bit too big to cross for me.
- Zeitoun, Dave Eggers: This dramatic true story recounts a Muslim-American family living through Hurrican Katrina. One of my favourite books this year!
- Island Beneath the Sea, Isabel Allende: Based in the 1770's, Allende tells the story of a slave in the Caribbean. Not my favourite by Allende, but still worth a read.
- The Blank Slate: the modern denial of human nature, Stephen Pinker:This is an excellent philosophical/scientific exploration into the nature vs nurture argument, which it closes definitively. Fascinating stuff!
- The Finkler Question, Howard Jacobson:More depressing loser-literature about a sad Jewish man in London living an insignificant life.
- 59 Seconds, Richard Wiseman
- The Thousand Autumns of Jakob de Zoet, David Mitchell: A novel about the Dutch trading port in Japanin the 1700s.
- Moab is my Washpot, Stephen Fry: This autobiography of Stephen Fry was incredibly self-deprecating, but also is an interesting story of the boarding-school system in England.
- Shadow of the Silk Road, Colin Thubron
- Eating India: An Odyssey into the Food and Culture of the Land of Spices, Chitrita Banerji
- Room, Emma Donoghue
- The Long Song, Andrea Levy
- We Need to Talk about Kevin, Lionel Shriver. This book was traumatising but still mesmerising. It explores the mind of the mother of a child who murders his classmates, and whether she is responsible for his actions.
- Lady Chatterley's Lover, DH Lawrence
- Scar Tissue, Anthony Kiedis
- So Much For That, Lionel Shriver
- Stone in a Landslide, Maria Barbel
- The Slap, Christos Tsiolkas
- Moods of Future Joys, Alistair Humphreys
- My Life in France, Julia Child