Best Books of 2011

I collected over 25 lists of the “Best Books of the Year” for 2011 and combined them into one list.  Here are the books on at least 4 of the 25 lists (the number of lists is in bold and underlined). If I’ve read the book, I’ve included the rating I gave it on Goodreads (1-5 stars).

24 
THE MARRIAGE PLOT. By Jeffrey Eugenides.

19   
THE SENSE OF AN ENDING. By Julian Barnes.
THE TIGER’S WIFE. By Téa Obreht.

17
BLUE NIGHTS. By Joan Didion. (3)
THE STRANGER’S CHILD. By Alan Hollinghurst.
1Q84. By Haruki Murakami. Translated by Jay Rubin and Philip Gabriel.

16
OPEN CITY. By Teju Cole.

15
THE ART OF FIELDING. By Chad Harbach.
IN THE GARDEN OF BEASTS: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler’s Berlin. By Erik Larson. (4)
STATE OF WONDER, By Ann Patchett.

14
THE SISTERS BROTHERS.  By Patrick deWitt.
THE CAT’S TABLE. By Michael Ondaatje.

13
THE SWERVE: How the World Became Modern. By Stephen Greenblatt.

12
THERE BUT FOR THE.  By Ali Smith.
THE FAMILY FANG. By Kevin Wilson.

11
BLOOD, BONES AND BUTTER: The Inadvertent Education of a Reluctant Chef. By Gabrielle Hamilton.
THE NIGHT CIRCUS. By Erin Morgenstern. 

10 
A VISIT FROM THE GOON SQUAD. By Jennifer Egan.
STEVE JOBS. By Walter Isaacson.
CATHERINE THE GREAT: Portrait of a Woman. By Robert K. Massie.
THE BUDDHA IN THE ATTIC. By Julie Otsuka.

9
TOWNIE. By Andre Dubus III.
CHARLES DICKENS: A Life. By Claire Tomalin. (4)

8 
THE INFORMATION: A History. A Theory. A Flood. By James Gleick.
11/22/63. By Stephen King.
THE LEFTOVERS. By Tom Perrotta.
THE TRAGEDY OF ARTHUR. By Arthur Phillips.
REAMDE. By Neal Stephenson.
THE SUBMISSION. By Amy Waldman.

7
LOST MEMORY OF SKIN. By Russell Banks.
ON CANAAN’S SIDE.  By Sebastian Barry.
BOSSYPANTS. By Tina Fey.
SAY HER NAME. By Francisco Goldman.
TEN THOUSAND SAINTS. By Eleanor Henderson.
TO END ALL WARS: A Story of Loyalty and Rebellion, 1914-1918. By Adam Hochschild.
DESTINY OF THE REPUBLIC: A Tale of Madness, Medicine and the Murder of a President.  By Candice Millard.
SWAMPLANDIA! By Karen Russell. (4)
BLUEPRINTS FOR BUILDING BETTER GIRLS. By Elissa Schappell.
PULPHEAD. By John Jeremiah Sullivan.


ARGUABLY: Essays. By Christopher Hitchens.
THE BETTER ANGELS OF OUR NATURE: Why Violence Has Declined. By Steven Pinker.
LEAVING THE ATOCHA STATION.  By Ben Lerner.
THE MAGICIAN KINGBy Lev Grossman.
ONCE UPON A RIVER.  By Bonnie Jo Campbell,
THE OUTLAW ALBUM.  By Daniel Woodrell.
THE PALE KING: An Unfinished Novel. By David Foster Wallace.

5
LAST MAN IN TOWER. By Aravind Adiga.
THE ILLUMINATION. By Kevin Brockmeier.
FIRE SEASON: Field Notes From A Wilderness Lookout. By Philip Connors.
THE ANGEL ESMERALDA: Nine Stories. By Don DeLillo.
THE FORGOTTEN WALTZ. By Anne Enright.
A WORLD ON FIRE: Britain’s Crucial Role in the American Civil War. By Amanda Foreman.
MIDNIGHT RISING: John Brown and the Raid That Sparked the Civil War. By Tony Horwitz.
TRAIN DREAMS. By Denis Johnson.
THINKING, FAST AND SLOW. By Daniel Kahneman.
MALCOLM X: A Life of Reinvention. By Manning Marable.
THE GREATER JOURNEY: Americans in Paris. By David McCullough.
SOLACE. By Belinda McKeon.
THE PARIS WIFE. By Paula McLain.
RIN TIN TIN: The Life and the Legend. By Susan Orlean.
WENDY AND THE LOST BOYS: The Uncommon Life of Wendy Wasserstein. By Julie Solomon.
STONE ARABIA.  By Dana Spiotta.
THE EMPTY FAMILY.  By Colm Tóibín.
BEFORE I GO TO SLEEP. By S.J. Watson.
ZONE ONEBy Colson Whitehead.
LOST IN SHANGRI-LA: A True Story of Survival, Adventure and the Most Incredible Rescue Mission of World War II. By Mitchell Zuckoff.

4
THE FREE WORLD. By David Bezmozgis.
OTHER PEOPLE’S MONEY. By Justin Cartwright.
THE ANATOMY OF A MOMENT. By Javier Cercas.
READY PLAYER ONE. By Ernest Cline.
THE BEGINNING OF INFINITY: Explanations That Transform the World. By David Deutsch.
THE PRAGUE CEMETERY. By Umberto Eco.
HALF-BLOOD BLUES. By Esi Edugyan.
NIGHTWOODSBy Charles Frazier.
THE ORIGINS OF POLITICAL ORDER: From Prehuman Times to the French Revolution. By Francis Fukuyama.
COCKTAIL HOUR UNDER THE TREE OF FORGETFULNESS. By Alexandra Fuller.
LOVE AND CAPITAL: Karl Marx and Jenny Marx and the Birth of a Revolution. By Mary Gabriel.
GEORGE F. KENNAN. By John Lewis Gaddis.
RIVER OF SMOKE. By Amitav Ghosh.
HEMINGWAY’S BOAT: Everything He Loved in Life, and Lost, 1934-1961. By Paul Hendrickson.
THE DOVEKEEPERS. By Alice Hoffman.
THE END: The Defiance and Destruction of Hitler’s Germany, 1944-1945. By Ian Kershaw.
BOOMERANG: Travels in the New Third World. By Michael Lewis.
A MAN OF PARTS. By David Lodge.
WHAT IT IS LIKE TO GO TO WAR. By Karl Marlantes.
JERUSALEM: The Biography. By Simon Sebag Montefiore.
MR. FOX. By Helen Oyeyemi.
THIS BURNS MY HEART. By Samuel Park.
INSIDE SCIENTOLOGY: The Story of America’s Most Secretive Religion. By Janet Reitman.
THE PSYCHOPATH TEST: A Journey Through the Madness Industry. By Jon Ronson.
HABIBI. By Craig Thompson.
THE BARBARIAN NURSERIES. By Hector Tobar.
ONE DAY I WILL WRITE ABOUT THIS PLACE: A Memoir. By Binyavanga Wainaina.
THE QUEST: Energy, Security, And The Remaking Of The Modern World. By Daniel Yergin.

One thought on “Best Books of 2011

  1. Pingback: 2011 – The Past Wasn’t So Long Ago | Make Lists, Not War

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