It's that time of the year again, fellow book lovers! Now's the perfect moment to round up our best reads for 2011. I had a fabulous year, as I was able to read more than 100 books! Normally, I list my top 10, but it was a bit difficult to do that this year. So I came up with my top 12 favorite books!
Two YA novels struck a chord this year. Schmidt's The Wednesday Wars and Vanderpool's Moon over Manifest. Both are touching reads and are very life affirming. Moon over Manifest definitely deserves the Newbery this year. I'm still waiting for Schmidt to win though.
For classic reads, I highly recommend Williams's Stoner and Hesse's Siddhartha. Stoner has received universal acclaim recently. Williams's story about the life of an academic is pure reading bliss. As for Siddhartha, well, it's simply profound.
2011 is the year that I read a lot of science fiction and fantasy. Rothfuss's The Name of the Wind is recommend to people waiting for the next George R. R. Martin novel. Miéville's Perdido Street Station has elements of steam punk, horror, and fantasy. It's unlike anything I've read before. Bacigalupi's cyber punk The Windup Girl combines aspects of politics, genetic engineering, and sociology. I loved it!
Of course, most of my best reads are in contemporary fiction. I liked two 2011 Booker-shortlisted novels -- Miller's Snowdrops and Edugyan's Half Blood Blues. Tóibín's Brooklyn was shortlisted last year. Rachman's The Imperfectionists is one very funny novel made of stories. And I was floored by the narrative and scope of Syjuco's Ilustrado.
Hmmm... This must be the first year when I haven't listed a non-fiction book as a best read. Maybe I should read more non-fiction next year. How about you, dear reader, what are your favorite books of 2011?