Continuing my tradition of not recommending any books for Christmas, I now turn to what I’m not recommending for fiction.
Fiction may be the genre I’m most comfortable with. It’s the one I started with, way back when my mother read Grimm’s Fairy Tales aloud to me. (That's not me in the photograph above, but it could have been.) It’s the one I’ve likely read the most of. And it’s certainly the one I feel the most at home in.
I’m keeping this list non-partisan, which means I’m not including my own two novels, both of which I’ve read several times this year for different reasons (and the links are off to the right, in case you’re interested). Most of these were published in 2012.
Christmas at Eagle Pond by Donald Hall.
God’s Acres by David Gerard.
The Mountain Between Us by Charles Martin.
The Novelist by L.L. Barkat.
The Matisse Stories by A.S. Byatt.
The Captive Heart by Dale Cramer (it’s hard for me to believe I’m recommending an Amish romance, but I am).
The Tourist Killer by F.C. Etier
The Angel’s Game by Carlos Ruiz Zafon.
Temptation by Travis Thrasher.
Thursday at Noon by William Brown.
If They Keep Silent: Stories by Daniel Dydek.
Frantic by Mike Dellosso.
The Blue Hallelujah by Andy Straka.
Dragonmarch by Ian Thomas Curtis
The Unraveling of Wentwater by C.S. Lakin
I read this after I compiled and posted my poetry non-recommendations, and it may well be the best contemporary book of poetry I read this year. It's so good that I’m almost tempted to recommend it.
Darkroom by Jazzy Danziger.
Photograph: Child and Book by George Hodan via Public Domain Pictures. Used with permission.