Friday, December 30, 2016

2016 - Books of the Year

First, this was a strange year in terms of reading. Of the 28 books I read, most were non-fiction, and with Steven Pinker's "The Better Angels of our Nature" taking up a significant chunk of the time allocated to reading. Even if it wasn't published in 2016, I can recommend it to anyone who's interested in our world. And I must say that the non-fiction I read was often more captivating and even entertaining than the fiction, which says a lot about the writing skills of the authors in the non-fiction catagory. In that respect, Andrea Wulf's "The Invention of Nature" could serve as an example for any non-fiction writer.

Second, and in contrast to other years, I did not find any novels that really took my breath away. Javier Marías comes up first on the list, even if his new novel is not as good as "The Infatuations". I enjoyed David Mitchell's "The Bone Clocks", although more for the stylistic prowess and entertainment value. I was disappointed by some generally acclaimed novels, such as Viet Thanh Nguyen's "The Sympathizer" and Yanick Lahens' "Bain de Lune". And of course a whole bunch of books is still waiting to be read: Julian Barnes, Knausgaard, Ian McEwan, Boualem Sansal, Amos Oz, Carlos Castán, Tahar Ben Jelloun to name but a few. I look forward to the new Michael Chabon. All that's for next year.

Third, I decided to switch to English for my reviews, since most of the books I read are in English. That may also increase the readership.

  1. Steven Pinker - The Better Angels of our Nature - A History Of Violence And Humanity 
  2. Amir Alexander - Infinitesimal - How A Dangerous Mathematical Theory Changed The World
  3. Andrea Wulf - The Invention Of Nature 
  4. Scott E. Page - The Difference
  5. Sam Harris & Maajid Nawaz - Islam and the Future of Tolerance
  1. Javier Marías - Thus Bad Begins 
  2. Eduard Márquez - Brandes' Decision
  3. David Mitchell - The Bone Clocks 
  4. Eric-Emmanuel Schmidt - La Nuit De Feu
  5. Miguel Syjuco - Ilustrado 

No comments: