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Posts Tagged ‘best of 2012’

bookxmasI love lists of books because I almost always find new titles to add to my infinite TBR list. My favorite lists are themed — best baseball novels, choice chick-lit, nifty noir tales, etc. Come December and I’m immersed in everyone’s best-of-the-year lists, nodding in agreement when I spot my own favorites and taking note of titles I still want to check out.

Louise Erdrich’s The Round House, which won the National Book  Award for fiction and which an elf named Dean has left under my Christmas tree, will be at the top as soon as I finish Michael Connelly’s The Black Box, a Secret Santa gift. Waiting in the wings is Ben Fountain’s Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, which I snapped up during a recent e-book sale. And I’m on the library waiting list for Barbara Kingsolver’s Flight Behavior.

Friends of this blog probably know my favorites of 2012 because I’ve raved about them in previous posts. A goodly number overlap with others’ lists of best/favorites of the year: Megan Abbott’s cheerleader noir Dare Me, Jess Walters’ non-linear novel Beautiful Ruins, Tana French’s chilly Broken Harbor, and Robin Sloan’s debut, Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore.

Three more first novels proved rewarding: Daniel O’Malley’s supernatural detective thriller The Rook, Douglas Nicholas’ haunting historical Something Red, and Attica Locke’s plantation mystery The Cutting Season. I read e-galleys of all three and purchased copies when the digital versions expired.

I expected good books from favorite authors, and Alice Munro (Dear Life), Richard Ford (Canada), Alan Furst (Mission to Paris) and Barbara Vine (The Child’s Child) all came through. So did Elizabeth Hand with Available Dark, Carol Anshaw with Carry the One, and Dan Fesperman with The Double Game.

“Best,” of course, doesn’t necessarily mean best-selling, but it’s nice when it happens. Congrats to Gillian Flynn (Gone Girl) and John Green (The Fault in Our Stars).

So, what do you recommend not mentioned here? I’m making a list.

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