Monday, December 14, 2009

My Top 10 Books of the 2000s

I read a lot this decade, but I generally don't read as much modern stuff as I should. My list covers the books that I read that really stuck with me. It is a nice mix of fiction and nonfiction, but you can clearly see where my loyalties lie.

11. The Traveler by Sol Smith

Shameless plug. But really, I loved it. Right up my alley.

10. Founding Brothers by Joseph Ellis

This book takes a new look at the relationships of the founding fathers. I don't understand why students are stuck with textbooks when there is prose this exciting about our country's founding.

9. Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser

This book really takes a critical look at the entire food industry. Never have I wanted to change the way I live more than when I read this book. It's shocking and entertaining.

8. The Universe in a Nutshell by Stephen Hawking

I fell in love with "Brief History of Time" and I liked this one even more. Hawking has a real talent for writing in a way to make the layman understand the intricacies of time and space.

7. A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson

This is basically a history of the sciences. It's full of insight and really funny asides. By far the longest book on the list, it is really worth the time you spend on it.

6. Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver

A terrific look at local eating by the novelist, Kingsolver. She and her family decide to eat food that they grow and food grown within 100 miles of them for a year. Trust me, it will make you feel like crap about how you eat.

5. The Fifth Plane by Bull Marquette

An alternate history of 9/11 that includes victory in a fifth hijacking that day. It gives exciting insight to the world of the terrorists and offers an interesting paranormal twist to the political novel.

4. American Gods by Neil Gaiman

For sure this is my sci-fi pick of the decade. What American Gods does right is take mythology and place it into modern day life in a believable way. The ideas are wonderful and the landscapes are breathtaking. See also the somewhat-sequel "Anansi Boys."

3. The Life of Pi by Yann Martel

A boy is stuck in a lifeboat with a tiger. You don't want to read that?

2. The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

My understanding is that the movie sucks, but trust me, this book is amazing. I loved this book so much that I really didn't want it to end. The author is expert at crafting the story with implausibility that reads plausibly--my favorite.

1. Fierce Invalids home from hot Climates by Tom Robbins

This is the book that stayed with me the most over the decade. Interesting, entertaining, and masterfully crafted, I don't know how I lived without this book. Of all of Robbins' books, this is tied for number one for me, right next to Jitterbug Perfume

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