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message 1: by Meghan (new)

Meghan Okay, so this is a little behind the times but I am finally getting around to Entertainment Weekly's Year End Review and they listed their favorite books. So I thought I'd share and maybe people can add their own. Just in case you needed some ideas of what to read, I suppose:

Best Fiction:
1. The Post-Birthday World by Lionel Shriver
2. Shakespeare's Kitchen by Lore Segal
3. Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris
4. Last Night at the Lobster by Stewart O' Nan
5. A Free Life by Ha Jin
6. On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan
7. The Gravedigger's Daughter by Joyce Carol Oates
8. Out Stealing Horses by Per Petterson
9. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz
10. The Terror by Dan Simmons

message 3: by Meghan (last edited Jan 24, 2008 07:36PM) (new)

Meghan Best and Worst:

"Most Magical Finale"
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows by J.K. Rowling

"Least Magical Finale"
The Children of Hurin by [J.R.R. Tolkien]

"Best Comic of the Year"
Exit Wounds by Rutu Modan

"Best Title"
If You Didn't Bring Jerky, What Did I Just Eat?" by Bill Heavey

"Runner Up Best Title"
Shalom on the Range by Friends of Shalom Park

"Best Book by a Reality TV Alum"
A Model Summer by Paulina Porizkova

"Worst Book by a Reality TV Alum"
Heart Full of Soul by Taylor Hicks

"Most Unnecessary Sequel"
The Vixen Diaries by Karrine Steffan

message 4: by Sarah (new)

Sarah (songgirl7) Wow, the only one I have read was HP7.

message 5: by Bree (last edited Jan 25, 2008 07:35PM) (new)

Bree Is it bad that I haven't read any of those books? :(

And what is the criteria for becoming a "Best Book" is it sales? or reviews?

cuz i've bought many a book that 25 pages into it and it's gone in the "donate to the library" box

message 6: by Dottie (new)

Dottie  (oxymoronid) | 698 comments I just read On Chesil Beach for the future discussion on CR group -- and I've heard things on several others that make me think I want to read them -- but haven't yet. I'm always pretty much behind the curve except when I get a truly rave reco from someone whose reading tastes I've come to trust.

message 7: by M0rfeus (new)

M0rfeus Hmm, the only one I've read is "Schulz and Peanuts". I have a comic strip mentality...


message 8: by Sera (new)

Sera I think that I am one of a handful of people who have actually read The Post-Birthday World. It's a very long novel, about a woman who has the opportunity to cheat on her mate. Then, the book flips back and forth between what would happened if she did cheat and what would happen if she didn't cheat. The question throughout is "with whom would she have been better off?" It's a unique read, but another one that I'm hesitate to recommend, because of the length, the details about playing snooker in England, and the difficulty in picking the right path for the heroine of the novel. However, I really appreciated what the author, who is a man by the way, was trying to do by alternating between two different perspectives. In fact, my favorite part of the book was the going back and forth bit - that is, taking one event, such a visit to mom's house, and seeing how the mere presence of each man affects the outcome of a particular scenario.

message 9: by Sarah (new)

Sarah (songgirl7) Hmm, kind of like Sliding Doors.

message 10: by Dottie (new)

Dottie  (oxymoronid) | 698 comments Sera and Sarah -- well that book gets placed on the TBR list and high up -- the book sounds intriguing and I loved Sliding Doors -- have watched it multiple times looking for tiny bits each time.

message 11: by K (new)

K Oscar Wao is an interesting read - although it requires patience.

message 12: by Alison, the guru of grace (new)

Alison | 1282 comments Mod
You know, what surprised me about this list...there were very few overlaps with...I think it was the New York Times that put out a best of list, too (among others, I'm sure). Which makes we wonder about which were really the best? I would like to read the J.C. Oates and of course the I. McKewan.

message 13: by Sera (new)

Sera Dottie, you will have to let me what you think after reading TPBW. Someone mentioned Sliding Doors in their review of this book on goodreads. I'll have to check it out; I'm not sure that I've seen it.

Alison, does the NY Times list focus more on bestsellers? EW can be a little artsy at times; for example, Stephen King gave his top 10 list of books (also in EW), and I don't recall there being much overlap either.

message 14: by Arctic (new)

Arctic | 571 comments The Oscar Wao book is on quite a few lists I've noticed. But overall yeah I agree the EW list tends to be more "artsy" which actually I think is what I like about it.

Sera, I think you'd like Sliding Doors. TPBW seems to be from the other woman's perspective though, whereas SD is from the slighted woman's perspective.

Also, I went through a bunch of 'best of 07' lists last weekend and made a bookshelf for those books that sounded most interesting to me, if anyone's curious.

message 15: by Meghan (new)

Meghan That's so funny Heather. Because I've been staring at that book every time I've gone to the bookstore (and not just because it's on a special table--but on the bookshelf as well). I just like the title I think. But I've never been able to get myself to actually purchase it.

And I concur. EW definitely skews "artsy". It's personal taste on their lists. I don't think best seller list have much to do with it.

message 16: by Alison, the guru of grace (last edited Jan 27, 2008 07:20PM) (new)

Alison | 1282 comments Mod
This is the NYT list I was referring to. I think this is critic's choice, rather than best-sellers. And I guess it combines fiction and nonfiction.

New York Times 10 Best Books of 2007

1. Man Gone Down: A Novel
by Michael Thomas

2. Out Stealing Horses: A Novel*
by Per Petterson

3. The Savage Detectives: A Novel
by Roberto Bolano

4. Then We Came to the End: A Novel*
by Joshua Ferris

5.Tree of Smoke: A Novel
by Denis Johnson

6.Imperial Life in the Emerald City: Inside Iraq's Green Zone (Vintage)
by Rajiv Chandrasekaran

7. Little Heathens: Hard Times and High Spirits on an Iowa Farm During the Great Depression
by Mildred Armstrong Kalish

8. The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court*
by Jeffrey Toobin

9. The Ordeal of Elizabeth Marsh: A Woman in World History
by Linda Colley

10. The Rest Is Noise: Listening to the Twentieth Century
by Alex Ross

*included on EW's lists

As a long time EW subscriber, I agree that they tend to pick a few for their lists that might otherwise be overlooked...I always attribute it to a desire to appear "edgy." But, I like them more for it. They usually make some less obvious choices.

message 17: by Meghan (new)

Meghan But less we give the wrong idea of EW's lists, they do a good job of featuring both fiction and nonfiction and various sub-genres like graphic novels, chick lit, and the like.

I agree though Alison, they do feature books that may be overlooked because at the time, don't have the big numbers (in sales). I'm enjoying it more since joining goodreads.

message 18: by Meghan (new)

Meghan Weird. Last Night at the Lobster made the Top 10 book list yet EW only rated it a B+ when they critiqued it. So is it really good or just average now?! hmmmmm

message 19: by Sera (new)

Sera Hmmm, same reviewer Meghan?

message 20: by Alison, the guru of grace (new)

Alison | 1282 comments Mod
Hmmmmmmmm...makes you think there weren't too many "A" books in '07.

message 21: by Meghan (new)

Meghan Sera - I don't think so. But I did find that interesting. Considering A Free Life was rated as an EW Pick and got an 'A'. I had kind of assumed all the Top 10 books were at least some sort of 'A' rating.

It does make you think. Most of the books I loved reading last year had come out in years past. I haven't read too many of the books listed on any of the top 2007 lists.

message 22: by Sarah (new)

Sarah (songgirl7) I read very few new releases in 2007. I read HP7, the fifth in the Thursday Next (The Eyre Affair) series, and one by Madeleine Wickham.

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