I collected more than 10 “Best Books of 2004” lists and combined them into one meta-list. Here are the results. This list includes every book on two or more of the original ‘best of’ lists. The numbers in bold indicate the number of lists the book was on. If I’ve read the book, I’ve included the rating I gave it on Goodreads (1-5 stars).
JONATHAN STRANGE & MR. NORRELL. By Susanna Clarke.
CLOUD ATLAS. By David Mitchell. (4)
THE LINE OF BEAUTY. By Alan Hollinghurst. (4)
THE MASTER. By Colm Toibin. (4)
GILEAD. By Marilynne Robinson. (4)
THE PLOT AGAINST AMERICA. By Philip Roth. (4)
CASE HISTORIES. By Kate Atkinson.
ALEXANDER HAMILTON. By Ron Chernow. (4)
CHRONICLES: Volume One. By Bob Dylan. (4)
WILL IN THE WORLD: How Shakespeare Became Shakespeare. By Stephen Greenblatt. (4)
CHAIN OF COMMAND: The Road From 9/11 to Abu Ghraib. By Seymour M. Hersh.
ARC OF JUSTICE: A Saga of Race, Civil Rights, and Murder in the Jazz Age. By Kevin Boyle. (4)
HIP: The History. By John Leland.
SNOW. By Orhan Pamuk. Translated by Maureen Freely. (4)
LITTLE CHILDREN. By Tom Perrotta.
THE WORKING POOR: Invisible in America. By David K. Shipler. (4)
A BIT ON THE SIDE. By William Trevor.
THE AMATEUR MARRIAGE. By Anne Tyler.
THE SHADOW OF THE WIND. By Carlos Ruiz Zafón.
THE 9/11 COMMISSION REPORT: Final Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States. (4)
HARBOR. By Lorraine Adams.
WAKE UP, SIR! By Jonathan Ames.
ORYX AND CRAKE. By Margaret Atwood.
THE INNER CIRCLE. By T. Coraghessan Boyle. (4)
YOU REMIND ME OF ME. By Dan Chaon.
BLUE BLOOD. By Edward Conlon.
THE HAMILTON CASE. By Michelle de Kretser.
AMERICAN DREAM: Three Women, Ten Kids, and a Nation’s Drive to End Welfare. By Jason DeParle.
THE COMING OF THE THIRD REICH. By Richard J. Evans.
SURPRISE, SECURITY, AND THE AMERICAN EXPERIENCE. By John Lewis Gaddis.
NIGHTINGALES: The Extraordinary Upbringing and Curious Life of Miss Florence Nightingale. By Gillian Gill.
DANCING WITH CUBA: A Memoir of the Revolution. By Alma Guillermoprieto.
FATHER JOE: The Man Who Saved My Soul. By Tony Hendra.
EXUBERANCE: The Passion for Life. By Kay Redfield Jamison.
COLLECTED POEMS. By Donald Justice.
TRANSMISSION. By Hari Kunzru.
ALOFT. By Chang-rae Lee.
THE GENIUS OF LANGUAGE: Fifteen Writers Reflect on Their Mother Tongue. By Wendy Lesser.
MAXIMUM CITY: Bombay Lost and Found. By Suketu Mehta. (4)
LITTLE SCARLET. By Walter Mosley.
RUNAWAY. By Alice Munro.
THE FALLS. By Joyce Carol Oates. (4)
THE BIG YEAR: A Tale of Men, Nature and Fowl Obsession. By Mark Obmascik.
HEIR TO THE GLIMMERING WORLD. By Cynthia Ozick.
TRUTH AND BEAUTY: A Friendship. By Ann Patchett.
THE GOURMET COOKBOOK. By Ruth Reichl.
JOHN JAMES AUDUBON: The Making of an American. By Richard Rhodes. (4)
THE DOUBLE. By Jose Saramago. Translated by Margaret Costa.
DRESS YOUR FAMILY IN CORDUROY AND DENIM. By David Sedaris.
IN THE SHADOW OF NO TOWERS. By Art Spiegelman.
AMERICA (THE BOOK): A Citizen’s Guide to Democracy Inaction. By Jon Stewart. (3)
RISING FROM THE RAILS: Pullman Porters and the Making of the Black Middle Class. By Larry Tye.
UNFORGIVABLE BLACKNESS: The Rise and Fall of Jack Johnson. By Geoffrey C. Ward.
THE ITALIAN BOY: Murder and Grave-Robbery in 1830s London. By Sarah Wise.
THE AMERICANIZATION OF BENJAMIN FRANKLIN. By Gordon S. Wood.
PLAN OF ATTACK. By Bob Woodward.