Feb 10, 2018


I read 44 books last year.  A lot of them were good.  A few of them really weren't.  But, when it came time to pick favorites, I really felt like I could only name four.  So, four it is.  And they are all fiction.

Of those four, I have a clear top two.  These two books will definitely be on my reread list in a few years  I loved them so much that I know I will find great pleasure in reading them again, once the stories have faded a bit from my memory.

1/ The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson

Oh my.  This book was a delight.  I laughed so many times while I read it.   It has a sort of Forrest Gump feel to it, as the main character  keeps bumping up with major historical events and figures.  I'm not usually one to talk a lot about the books I'm reading, but I kept giving updates to Brian as I read.  Like, "Now Allan met Mao!" and "Now he is drinking vodka with Harry Truman."

2/ Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi

This book worked forward from life in tribal Africa in the 18th  century to present day America.  Each section moved the story forward by a generation.  There wasn't a lot of "happy" in this book, but it was so beautifully written and made me stop to think about where I come from and how my life will impact future generations.

And the next two may or may not be on my future "re-read" list, but they were wonderfully crafted and I have thought about them many times in the months since I read them. 

3/ Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese.

This is something of a coming of age story of twins that came into the world through very unexpected circumstances.  It is set in Ethiopia and the landscape and political climate are almost an additional character in the story. 

My only fault with the book is its length.  It is almost 700 pages and although it was one of my favorites, I might have loved it just a bit more if it were a hundred pages or so shorter.

4/ The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

Much like "Homegoing" the subject matter for this book was challenging.  This book required me to physically set it aside a few times because it was just so intense.  But it was beautifully written and tells such and important story from our nation's history. 

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If you are a fan of literary fiction, I give my full recommendation to any and all of these books. 

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