The Broke and the Bookish, because I was kind of a spotty blogger last year, and I read some things that I liked a lot, and never reviewed them. I also relish the opportunity to talk about books-before-blogging, so I like this week's topic: Top Ten Books You've Read, but Never Reviewed.
5.Anthony Bourdain, Medium Raw: A Bloody Valentine to the World of Food and the People Who Cook:
I love No Reservations, Anthony Bourdain's show on the Travel Channel, and I knew that he was considered a quite good food writer. As someone who will happily spend a vacation eating out of my price range , at places where I have to put in work to get a reservation, I really enjoy this book about the world of chefs. However, if names like Wylie Dufresne or Ferran Adria don't ring a bell, the book might be a little name-droppy for some readers.
4.Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale
This was a reread in 2010. I was teaching it at the time. At this point in my life, Atwood's portrayal of a futuristic American is my favorite dystopia. The writing is rich, profound and beautiful.
3.Jill Bolte Taylor, My Stroke of Insight: A Brain Scientist's Personal Journey
I'm not really sure why I picked this one up; someone must have recommended it to me. I always enjoy reading about neuroscience and this little book doesn't disappoint as a book about the brain. I felt the author's personal journey of healing after a stroke was also emotionally powerful as memoir. In the end, what I really took away from the book was a set of tools to apply to my own life.
2.David Nicholls, One Day
I don't really think I need to say much about what this book is about, what with the upcoming movie and the buzz and all. I really enjoyed it, and it was a great vacation read for me last summer.
1.Chris Cleave, Little Bee
This is another heavily reviewed book, with some major fans and also detractors. I loved the book, and it was over too soon for me. I found the narrative voice -- Little Bee's-- to be super engaging and lively.
5.David Sedaris, Naked
I think I've mentioned before that I think Sedaris is better listened to than read, so this is my #1 recommendation for an audiobook. He's hilarious.
4.Bret Easton Ellis, Lunar Park
This is my favorite Ellis book, although it isn't a particularly good place to start if you've never read Ellis before. This book is part pseudo-memoir, part noir, part metatextual investigation. Good stuff.
3.George Eliot, Middlemarch
The blogging world seems to love sprawling Russian novels, so why not a sprawling British novel? My memories of reading Middlemarch (very slowly) after graduating from college, are some of my fondest.
2.Philip K. Dick, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
I don't have a very straightforward relationship with science fiction. Sometimes I really like it. Sometimes I think it is boring. Sometimes I think it overly complicated and I have a hard time visualizing the world that the writer is trying to portray. I didn't feel that way about this. I would actually really like to give it a reread.
1.Nathaniel Hawthorne, Selected Tales and Sketches
As much as I love my blog's namesake, I probably like Hawthorne's short fiction (or "tales" as he calls them) better. If you haven't read any, start with "The Birthmark," "Young Goodman Brown," and "Rappacini's Daughter." Then read the rest.