Friday, December 30, 2016

2016: Books Edition

As always, I'm here to present some reads and recommendations at the end of the year. I'm currently pretty laid up with a cough / cold /other accouterments of winter, so I don't have much energy to elaborate, but there are some excellent books on this list. Giving book recommendations is how I show love. ;) And, as always, if you have any recommendations for me, please let me know!

Totals: 76 books, 49 non-fiction and 27 fiction

Page count: 23,347 pages, 14937 non-fiction and 8410 fiction

Favorite dedication: "I would like it to be clearly understood that this book is not wacky. Only dumb redheads in Fifties' sitcoms are wacky. No, it's not zany, either." -Terry Pratchett, Equal Rites

The Top Ten Books of 2016

1. Room - Emma Donoghue  Devastating. Terrifying. Emotionally satisfying. It's a brutal and intense one, but I promise you it's worth it.
2. Confessions of a Latter-day Virgin - Nicole Hardy  A memoir about religion, sexuality, and the struggle to reconcile the two. Funny, touching, relatable.
3. Born to Run - Christopher McDougall  I didn't expect to like this nearly as much as I did. Full of trivia, heart, and larger-than-life characters.
4. Hard Choices - Hillary Rodham Clinton  Love her or hate her, few people in this world work as hard as Hillary Clinton.
5. Odd Thomas - Dean Koontz    I didn't know anything about this book going in, and I kind of feel like that's the best way to read it.
6. Fooling Houdini - Alex Stone   Math, magic, and what makes it all work. Highly enjoyable.
7. This Is A Book - Demetri Martin   Possibly the funniest book I've read in years. Laugh out loud hilarious.
8. The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons - Sam Kean  Sam Kean is my favorite science writer, and he doesn't disappint when tackling the brain.
9. Tinseltown - William J Mann   The story of a true life crime that reads like a mystery novel. Come for the murder mystery, stay for the subplots that created Hollywood.
10. A Room With a View - EM Forster Full of wonderful quotes like, "This desire to govern a woman -- it lies very deep, and men and women must fight it together." , "Mistrust all enterprises that require new clothes." , and "Life is a public performance on the violin, in which you must learn the instrument as you go along."

Honorable Mention:
Biography: Hyperbole & a Half - Allie Brosh   I laughed, I cried, I laughed again.
Fiction: The Girl With All the Gifts - MR Carey   I don't like zombie books but this one is good.
Non-fiction: Now I See You - Nicole Kear    A tongue-in-cheek memoir about a mom losing her sight.

And now, the complete list of books I read this year. Recommendations are bolded, rereads are marked with ***

Nonfiction, alphabetical by author
  • Catch Me If You Can: The True Story of a Real Fake - Frank W Abagnale
  • It's What I Do: A Photographer's Life of Love & War - Lynsey Addario
  • Candyfreak: A Journey Through the Chocolate Underbelly of America - Steve Almond
  • If You Lean In, Will Men Just Look Down Your Blouse?: Questions & Thoughts for Loud, Smart Women in Turbulent Times - Gina Barreca
  • I Know I Am, But What Are You? - Samantha Bee
  • Little Chapel on the River: A Pub, a Town, & the Search for What Matters Most - Gwendolyn Bounds
  • Hyperbole & a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem, & Other Things That Happened - Allie Brosh
  • I'm a Stranger Here Myself: Notes on Returning to America After Twenty Years - Bill Bryson
  • A Short History of Nearly Everything - Bill Bryson
  • The Yellow-Lighted Bookshop: A Memoir, A History - Lewis Buzbee
  • Hard Choices: A Memoir - Hillary Rodham Clinton
  • The Late Bloomer's Revolution: A Memoir - Amy Cohen
  • William Henry Harrison - Gail Collins
  • John Tyler: The Accidental President - Edward Crapol
  • Bossypants - Tina Fey
  • Bad Feminist: Essays - Roxanne Gay
  • The Swerve: How the World Became Modern - Stephen Greenblatt
  • My Year With Eleanor: A Memoir - Noelle Hancock
  • You'll Never Nanny in This Town Again: The True Adventures of a Hollywood Nanny - Suzanne Hansen
  • Confessions of a Latter-day Virgin: A Memoir - Nicole Hardy
  • Act One - Moss Hart
  • Dear Abigail: The Intimate Lives & Revolutionary Ideas of Abigail Adams & Her Two Remarkable Sisters - Diane Jacobs
  • The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons: The History of the Human Brain as Revealed by the Stories of Trauma, Madness, & Recovery - Sam Kean
  • Now I See You: A Memoir - Nicole Kear
  • The Man Who Made Lists: Love, Death, Madness, & the Creation of Roget's Thesaurus - Joshua Kendall
  • The Girls of Atomic City: The Untold Story of the Women Who Helped Win World War II - Denise Kiernan
  • Reel Terror: The Scary, Bloody, Gory, Hundred-Year History of Classic Horror Films - David Konow
  • Drama: An Actor's Education - John Lithgow
  • When Women Win: EMILY's List & the Ries of Women in American Politics - Ellen Malcolm
  • Tinseltown: Murder, Morphine, & Madness at the Dawn of Hollywood - William J Mann
  • This Is a Book - Demetri Martin
  • Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, & the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen - Christopher McDougall
  • How To Be a Woman - Caitlin Moran
  • Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books - Azar Nafisi
  • The Art of Asking: or How I Learned to Stop Worrying & Let People Help - Amanda Palmer
  • Getting Waisted: A Survival Guide to Being Fat in a Society That Loves Thin - Monica Parker
  • Death By Video Game: Danger, Pleasure, & Obsession on the Virtual Frontline - Simon Parkin
  • Yes Please - Amy Poehler
  • Head in the Cloud: Why Knowing Things Still Matters When Facts Are So Easy to Look Up - William Poundstone
  • It's Okay to Laugh (Crying Is Cool Too): A Memoir - Nora McInerny Purmort
  • Dreamland: Adventures in the Strange Science of Sleep - David Randall
  • Angry Optimist: The Life & Times of Jon Stewart - Lisa Rogak
  • Fooling Houdini: Magicians, Mentalists, Math Geeks & the Hidden Powers of the Mind - Alex Stone
  • Enough Said: What's Gone Wrong With the Language of Politics - Mark Thompson
  • Sex Object: A Memoir - Jessica Valenti
  • Lafayette in the Somewhat United States - Sarah Vowell
  • The Fiddler in the Subway: The True Story of What Happened When a World-Class Violinist Played for Handouts... and Other Virtuoso Performances by America's Foremost Feature Writer - Gene Weingarten
  • How Music Got Free: The End of an Industry, the Turn of the Century, & the Patient Zero of Piracy - Stephen Witt
  • A Room of One's Own - Virginia Woolf

Fiction, alphabetical by author

  • The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
  • The Uncommon Reader - Alan Bennett
  • Storm Front - Jim Butcher
  • The Girl With All the Gifts - MR Carey
  • The Mystery of Edwin Drood - Charles Dickens (Which I cannot recommend because it sucks you in but Charles died before finishing it :( ) 
  • Room - Emma Donoghue
  • As I Lay Dying - William Faulkner
  • Sharp Objects - Gillian Flynn
  • A Passage to India - EM Forster
  • A Room With a View - EM Forster
  • Stardust - Neil Gaiman
  • The Girl on the Train - Paula Hawkins
  • High Fidelity - Nick Hornby
  • Learning to Swear in America - Katie Kennedy
  • Forever Odd - Dean Koontz
  • Odd Thomas - Dean Koontz
  • The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo- Stieg Larsson
  • Dramarama - E Lockhart
  • Gentlemen Prefer Blondes - Anita Loos
  • Equal Rites - Terry Pratchett
  • Mort - Terry Pratchett
  • Wyrd Sisters - Terry Pratchett
  • ***The Golden Compass - Philip Pullman
  • ***My Fair Godmother - Janette Rallison
  • Cyrano de Bergerac - Edmond Rostand
  • ***Harry Potter & the Goblet of Fire - JK Rowling
  • Barefoot in the Park - Neil Simon