Day 35: Books Read 2018, plus a new noun

8459594._UY475_SS475_.jpg
  1. Linchpin: Are You Indispensable? Seth Godin (12/21/17 — 01/03/18)
  2. Zen Habits, Leo Barbuta (01/03/18 — 01/05/18)
  3. No Time to Spare, Ursula K. Le Guin (12/28/17 — 01/06/18)
  4. Die Empty, Todd Henry (01/08/18 — 01/12/18)
  5. Do The Work, Steven Pressfield (01/12/18 — 01/14/18)
  6. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, Phillip K. Dick (01/06/18 — 01/12/18)
  7. S., J.J. Abrams and Doug Dorst (01/12/18 — 02/02/18)
  8. Leviathan Wakes, James S.A. Corey (02/03/18 — 02/25/18 )
  9. The Lost Books of the Odyssey, Zachary Mason (02/25/18 — 03/07/18)
  10. Packing My Library: An Elegy and Ten Digressions, Alberto Manguel (03/07/18 — 03/14/18)
  11. Earthly Signs: Moscow Diaries, 1917/1922, Marina Tsvetaeva (03/15/18 — 03/31/18)
  12. Life in Code, Ellen Ullman (04/01/18 — 04/12/18)
  13. The Paris Review No. 202 (04/12/18 — 04/20/18)
  14. The Best American Essays 1986, Elizabeth Hardwick (ed.) (01/06/18 — 04/01/18)
  15. Dangling Man, Saul Bellow (04/21/18 — 04/03/18)
  16. Kraken, China Miéville (04/06/18 — 06/02/18)
  17. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, John le Carré (06/02/18 — 06/20/18)
  18. The Revenge of Analog, David Sax (06/20/18 — 06/27/18)
  19. Reckless Daughter: A Portrait of Joni Mitchell, David Yaffe (06/27/18 — 07/20/18 )
  20. Under the Sun: The Letters of Bruce Chatwin, Nicholas Shakespeare (ed.) (07/01/18 — 07/25/18)
  21. The Paris Review No. 203 (07/25/18 — 08/16/18)
  22. Three Moments of an Explosion, China Miéville (08/17/18 — 08/21/18)
  23. The Noise of Time, Julian Barnes (08/21/18 — 08/25/18)
  24. The Best American Essays 1987, Gay Talese (ed.) (03/29/18 — 09/03/18)
  25. The Overstory, Richard Powers (08/25/18 — 10/01/18)
  26. Totalitopia, John Crowley (09/13/18 — 10/08/18)
  27. Diaspora, Greg Egan (10/01/18 — 10/14/18)
  28. .Train Whistle Guitar, Albert Murray (10/14/18 — 10/28/18)
  29. A Small Town in Germany, John le Carré (10/28/18 — 11/18/18)
  30. Best American Essays 1988, Annie Dillard (ed.) (08/28/18 — 12/01/18)
  31. Show York Work!, Austin Kleon (11/20/18 — 12/02/18)
  32. Blood, Bones & Butter, Gabrielle Hamilton (11/20/18 — 12/05/18 )
  33. Snow Crash, Neal Stephenson (12/08/18 — 12/26/18)
  34. Impossible Owls, Brian Phillips (12/26/18 — )
  35. The Best American Essays 1988, Geoffrey Wolff (ed.). (12/21/18 — )
images.jpg

A bit of a disappointing list this year, both in terms of quantity and quality. There was a lot going on in my life this year that cost me reading time. I anticipate a more robust list this time next year.

Best? The two John Le Carré novels and Richard Powers' Overstory, plus Gabrielle Hamilton's food memoir Blood, Bones & Butter. Biggest discovery? The work of Albert Murray; if his other work is as good as Train Whistle Guitar, I have much good reading ahead of me. Most disappointing? The Revenge of Analog by David Sax, which said not much of anything, and Snow Crash, which contains a fascinating central conceit but is an amateurish work otherwise. Another disappointment was the Joni Mitchell biography, Reckless Daughter: A Portrait of Joni Mitchell. Author David Yaffe must have thought it clever to tip as many of Mitchell's lyrics into his prose as possible, not as quotation but masquerading as regular sentences. It wasn't clever, it was, again, amateurish. His musicological observations were unconvincing and his insights meagre.

51zZZqimcHL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

What would I spontaneously send to you were I that sort of spontaneously generous person? The two China Miéville books, which are fun from beginning to end, the Murray and the Hamilton, and Julian Barnes' The Noise of Time, which works its effects so slowly I almost quit on it before finding myself in its thrall.

So next year, treasured reader, read on. The term "voracious reader" appears so often I decided there needed to be a noun for people like us: vorator. Be a voracious reader. Be a vorator.