Thursday, December 3, 2009

The 27 Books I'm Not Recommending for Christmas

I love reading lists of books that people suggest for Christmas. I don’t know exactly why. Perhaps it’s what the lists tell me about the list makers, or to see if I’ve read any of them, or just to see what people have been reading and enjoying.

I also read the “list of fall books” published by the newspaper, usually at the end of August. Maybe I have a thing for book lists. But only book lists. List readers tend to gravitate toward “The 5 Ways Twitter Will Make You Rich” or “The 7 Things You Can Do to Make Your Boss Love You” or similar ones. Just watch this on Twitter for a while – you’ll be surprised.

But I look at book lists. I don’t usually compose them. Until now: my list of the “Best Books I’ve Read in 2009.”

I’m not recommending these books to give as Christmas presents. Reading is too personal a thing for me, and I start to get antsy when people give me books as presents. I’m polite, of course, but still antsy. This isn’t the same as telling my wife what books I would really like to read, leaving subtle hints like email messages and handwritten notes where she’s most likely to see them.

So here’s my list of the “Best Books I’ve Read in 2009.” Not all of them were published this year. If you wanted to give some of them as gifts, well, I’m not stopping you, of course. But all I’m saying is that these were the best books I read in 2009. For me. That’s all.

· The Credible Company by Roger D’Aprix.
· The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work by Alain de Botton.

· Stone Crossings by L.L. Barkat
· Churched by Matthew Paul Turner
· Quiet Strength by Tony Dungy
· Uncommon by Tony Dungy
· The Eyes of the Heart by Frederick Buechner

· Scream by Mike Dellosso
· Faces in the Fire by T.L. Hines
· Through the Fire by Shawn Grady
· Fatal Illusions by Adam Blumer
· Ghostwriter by Travis Thrasher
· Offworld by Robin Parrish

· Providence by Chris Coppernoll
· Dogwood by Chris Fabry
· Chasing Francis by Ian Cron
· Talking to the Dead by Bonnie Grove
· Lost Mission by Athol Dickson
· Return Policy by Michael Snyder
· The Shape of Mercy by Susan Meissner
· Summer of Light by Dale Cramer
· Wayback by Sam Batterman

· A Village Life by Louise Gluck
· Breakfast with Blake at the Lacoon by John Estes
· The Feast by Walter Bargen
· Sailing Alone Around the Room by Billy Collins
· Beyond the Masks by Harvey Stanbrough


L.L. Barkat said...

More poetry books for my wish list! :)

I love, LOVED the way you leave hints for your wife. (More strategies for my wish list ;-)

Matthew Paul Turner said...

Thank you. I'm truly honored to have made such a list...

nAncY said...

what an absolutely beautiful put together listing!

i copied it onto a word doc to keep for awhile.

i agree that giving a book is like giving a piece of art. a person likes to make their own choice for the most part.
perhaps a gift card to a book store... along with such a pretty listing such as this one would be nice.

i also like your postings on books that you have read.


Adam Blumer said...

Wow! I feel so honored to be included. Thank you!

Laura said...

Oh, my goodness! I love these lists. Nothing better than getting a recommendation from the horses mouth. Books! Books! Books! That's all I want for Christmas!


p.s. I bet you'll be adding another little gem to your poetry list soon...unless you get turned all Inside Out, that is. :)

Sam Batterman said...

Wow, Glenn! Thanks for including Wayback on this list.

Merry Christmas to you and yours!