Books That I Read This Year

Many people have been asking me to recommend books for them to read. I am posting on my blog all the books that I read (many not for the first time) during the past year. Since 77% of the books is fiction, readers of preponderantly non-fiction books may be somewhat disappointed with this list.      

The Sea ——      John Banville

Heat and Dust—–Ruth Prawer Jhabvala

Disgrace———-   J. M. Coetzee

The Ghost Road—–Pat Barker

Team of Rivals——Doris Kearns Goodwin

Cheeseland———- Randy Richardson

The Magic Barrel—-Bernard Malamud

Idiots First————–Bernard Malamud

Pictures of Fidelman—Bernard Malamud

Sons and Lovers——–D. H. Lawrence

Too Dark To Sleep—–Diane Gallagher

The Man with the Golden Arm—Nelson Algren

Never Come Morning —Nelson Algren

The Founding Mothers—-Cokie Roberts

Knock on any Door—-Willard Motley

Nelson Algren————Bettina Drew

Harvest  ——————Jim Crace

The Last Carousel——-Nelson Algren

Sweet Tooth————-Ian McEwan

Joseph Anton——-— Salman Rushdie

The Testament of Mary—Colm Toibin

How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia –Mohsin Hamid

Chicago: City on the Make————Nelson Algren

Saints and Sinners———————- Edna O’Brien

Saul Bellow’s Heart——————— Greg Bellow

Burr—————————————-   Gore Vidal

Ghana Must Go————————-   Taiye Selasi

TransAtlantic—————————-   Colum McCann  

The Third Coast—————————- Thomas Dyja

Havana Lost———————————Libby Fischer Hellmann

Albany Park———————————-Myles Golde

The Reluctant Fundamentalist———–Mohsin Hamid

Henderson the Rain King—————— Saul Bellow

Life After Life——————————-  Kate Atkinson

We Need New Names——————–  NoViolet Balawayo

A Tale for the Time Being—————-  Ruth Ozeki

Five Star Billionaire————————- Tash Aw

The Six Granddaughters of Cecil Slaughter—Susan Hahn

Cold Snap—————————————-Cynthia Morrison Phoel

Swastika Nation——————————–Arnie Bernstein

Boss——————————————— Mike Royko

Royko——————————————-Richard Ciccone

The Middlesteins—————————-Jami Attenberg

1001 Afternoons in Chicago—————Ben Hecht

The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao- -Junot Diaz

The Lowland———————————- Jhumpha Lahiri

The Patagonian Hare————————-Claude Lanzmann

The Luminaries———————————Eleanor Catton

Goodbye to All That—————————Robert Graves

Once We Were Brothers——————–  Ronald Balson

The English Girl——————————-  Daniel Silva

Mandrakes from the Holy Land——– Aharon Megged

The Cliff-Dwellers————————-     Henry Blake Fuller 




3 thoughts on “Books That I Read This Year

  1. This is quite the impressive list of books, sir. Lawrence’s SONS AND LOVERS is a psychologically wrenching portrayal of family dynamics and is, by far, my favorite Lawrence title. The prolonged death scene of Gertrude Morel is jarring, reminiscent of my own grandmother’s agonizing death. If only my students (grades 6-8, ages 11-14) were old enough to comprehend such an emotionally dense text, I would love to teach it to them.

    While I realize that there are not many non-fiction titles on your list, I was curious if you would be interested in reading a title I have recently co-authored with John Tartaglio. FROM TRAGEDY TO TRIUMPH is the uplifting story of John Tartaglio who, at 17, refused to quit as he tackled a seemingly insurmountable bacterial infection that left him amputated up to his hipbones. In confronting the gravest of circumstances, he triumphed over not only the New York City Marathon, but over his disability as well. It is currently available on, and it will be available on Kindle January 10 and on all other e-readers shortly after that. If you are interested in reading/reviewing FROM TRAGEDY TO TRIUMPH, John and I would happily provide you with a promotional copy.

    Regardless, I will regularly be checking your blog as your 2013 book recommendations have reminded me of some titles to pick up/reread in the new year.

    Take care,
    Andrew Chapin

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