Friday, December 31, 2010

End of the year book survey for 2010

Total books read this year: 180

Best accidental find: Always a Reckoning and other poems by Jimmy Carter. I remember picking this up at the library and wondering if it was just a coincidence. Could there be anything more random and delightful than a book of poems written by a former president? Now I know how the world's biggest Jewel fan and occasional poem reader felt when she stumbled upon a copy of A Night Without Armor.

I don't believe she wrote a word of this:  Miley Cyrus: Miles to Go by Miley Cyrus

So many unanswered questions: Hot Dog! A Global History by Bruce Kraig.

Too many answered questions: Collecting Political Buttons by Marc Sigoloff. Walter Mondale campaign buttons are the most desired of all political buttons, according to Marc Sigoloff: Walter Mondale button collector.

Sarah Vowelliest: The Wordy Shipmates by Sarah Vowell..

Gail Collins can do no wrongiest: When Everything Changed: the Amazing Journey of American Women from 1960 to the Present by Gail Collins

Best Collection of EssaysThe Fiddler in the Subway by Gene Weingarten

Reread Book I'll Read Again: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Best Nonfiction: Loot: the Battle over the Stolen Treasures of the Ancient World by Sharon Waxman

Worst Nonfiction: Confessions of an Heiress: a Tongue-in-Chic Peek Behind the Pose by Paris Hilton with Merle Ginsberg. I'm not sure what this was, but the fact that it is shelved next to Going Rogue by Sarah Palin at the public library is pretty hilarious.

Best Title: Sabine's Notebook: In Which the Extraordinary Correspondence of Griffin & Sabine Continues by Nick Bantock. I look forward to not watching the twee hipster film adaptions of these books.

Worst Title: America by Heart : Reflections on Family, Faith, and Flag by Sarah Palin. Reflections on...Flag.

Best Fiction: Room by Emma Donoghue

Worst Fiction: My House in Umbria by William Trevor

Best visit down memory lane: The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin

Worst visit down memory LAME (high-fiving a million angels): Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling

Best Memoir: Amen, Amen, Amen: Memoir of a Girl Who Couldn't Stop Praying (Among Other Things) by Abby Sher

Worst Memoir: So many candidates, but Stories from Candy Land: Confections from One of Hollywood's Most Famous Wives and Mothers by Candy Spelling and its random and incomplete "food" recipes takes the cake.

Worst book to find a handful of blonde hair in: Diana, a Tribute to the People's Princess by Peter Donnelly

Still no point for existence of TV companion books: The West Wing: The Official Companion

He should definitely be in jail: The Governor by Rod Blagojevich

Weirdest love letter to HEB Inside South Austin: a Guide by Diane Barnet

Funniest: The New York Regional Mormon Singles Dance by Elna Baker

Saddest: Resilience: Reflections on the Burdens and Gifts of Facing Life's Adversities by Elizabeth Edwards. Especially if you're reading it on the day she died and have already read the terrible book The Politician about John Edwards.

I think it's cheating to count this towards my books read list: Still More George W. Bushisms edited by Jacob Weisberg

Worst of the Year: The Politician by Andrew Young (Alternative title: Some People With Cancer Are Mean and I Need Cash by Andrew Young). The only thing one can learn from this mediocre and meandering book is that no one involved with John Edward's presidential campaign is going to Heaven. And gross John Edwards was inspired to be in politics after watching The American President, which somehow makes him more gross.

Best of the Year: Reconciliation: Islam, Democracy and the West by Benazir Bhutto. 

First book of 2011: Medium Raw by Anthony Bourdain

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