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My 2017 Book List

January 1, 2018

Screen Shot 2018-01-01 at 9.05.51 PM.pngThis is my 18th year doing this list. Thanks to all my friends and family who continue to encourage this obsession, who read my reviews and offer responses (or editing suggestions) and who share their own recommendations. Greg, Tim, Mom, Jon, Sarah, Brian, others.

I put myself in a pickle this year—I hit December and had about 12 books I had finished reading but hadn’t yet written reviews for. It was a busy year, and that’s my excuse if these feel uneven.

This has been for many years my favorite annual tradition. I find in books a means of escape, a way to grow my own writing craft by appreciating those better at it than I, and a way to figure out what to think of the world. Writing the review helps me remember the book better and make it my own. These reviews are less traditional reviews and more my very personal experiences with the books.

This year, I read or listened to thirty-five books. Here’s the list by the numbers:

17 were nonfiction, 18 fiction
17 had horses
7 were by or related to Cormac McCarthy
9 were wholly or partially about war
6 were by women
5 were classics (I’m counting Blood Meridian and you can’t stop me)
4 were re-reads

Here’s a link to the full list.

I publish reviews on this blog throughout the year as I read each book.

Here’s the short version of just my favorites:

The Crossing by Cormac McCarthy
Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders
Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
American War by Omar El Akkad
Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy
Manhattan Beach by Jennifer Egan

M Train by Patti Smith
Fantasyland by Kurt Andersen
Sacred Hoops by Phil Jackson
Theft By Finding by David Sedaris
Vacationland by John Hodgman

What did you read in 2017? What did you love? 


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