Reading List 2017

To read the review and comments about a specific book, note the number in parentheses after the author, click on the  Book Journal button, and scroll to that number.  You can also enter the book’s title in the Search box to the right.

Contemporary Fiction:

  1. The Villages, John Updike 
  2. The Underground Railroad, Colin Whitehead
  3. Transit, Rachel Cusk
  4. Commonwealth, Ann Patchett
  5. The Great Fire, Shirley Hazzard
  6. Hotel du Lac, Anita Brookner 
  7. A Horse Walks Into a Bar, David Grossman 
  8. Lila and Theron, Bill Schubart
  9. My Darling Detective, Howard Norman
  10. Walking to Gatlinburg, Howard Frank Mosher
  11. A Sport and a Pastime, James Salter
  12. Postcards, Annie Proulx 
  13. Radio Free Vermont, Bill McKibben
  14. Bread and Roses, Too, Katherine Paterson
  15. Elmet, Fiona Mozley 

Short Stories:

  1. Public Library, Ali Smith 
  2. In Sunlight or in Shadow, ed. Lawrence Block 
  3. Cliffs of Fall, Shirley Hazzard 
  4. Kissing in Manhattan, David Schickler 
  5. A Grace Paley Reader, Grace Paley, ed by Kevin Bowen
  6. Half Wild, Robin MacArthur
  7. Object Lessons: The Art of the Short Story, ed. L. & S. Stein 
  8. Going to Meet the Man, James Baldwin 
  9. Men Without Women, Haruki Murakami
  10. The Lottery and Other Stories, Shirley Jackson
  11. Shirley Jackson’s The Lottery, the Authorized Graphic Adaptation, Myles Hyman
  12. Swallowed by the Cold, Jensen Beach

Classic Literature:

  1. Invitation to a Beheading, Vladimir Nabokov 
  2. Labyrinths, Jorge Borges 
  3. The Big Sleep, Raymond Chandler
  4. The Odyssey, Homer, translated by Robert Fitzgerald
  5. Long Day’s Journey into Night, Eugene O’Neill 
  6. Buddenbrooks, Thomas Mann
  7. Annie Allen, Gwendolyn Brooks 
  8. Walden, Henry David Thoreau


  1. How to Relax, Thich Nhat Hanh 
  2. The Mindfulness Survival Kit, Thich Nhat Hanh 
  3. How to Meditate, Pema Chodron
  4. When Things Fall Apart, Pema Chodron 
  5. Awakening Through Love, John Makransky
  6. Why Buddhism is True, Robert Wright
  7. Mindfulness, Joseph Goldstein 
  8. Solve for Happy, Mo Gawdat
  9. Greene on Capri: A Memoir, Shirley Hazzard 
  10. She’s Not There, Jennifer Boylan 
  11. American Philosophy, John Kaag 
  12. The History of Argentina, Daniel K. Lewis
  13. Absolutely on Music: Conversations with Seiji Ozawa, Haruki Murakami
  14. 32525625: Memoirs of a Soldier Without a Rifle, Stanley Saft 
  15. This Long Pursuit, Richard Holmes 
  16. Walking to Listen, Andrew Forsthoefel 
  17. A Truck Full of Money, Tracy Kidder 
  18. Avid Reader, Robert Gottlieb 
  19. Pumpkin Flowers, Matti Friedman 
  20. An American Sickness, Elisabeth Rosenthal 
  21. My Ideal Bookshelf, Jane Mount & Thessaly LaForce
  22. My Life with Bob, Pamela Paul
  23. Ruined by Reading: A Life in Books, Lynne Sharon Schwartz 
  24. Fictitious Dishes, Dinah Fried 
  25. My Bookstore, ed. Ronald Rice
  26. Footnotes from the World’s Greatest Bookstores, Bob Eckstein
  27. Big Money Thinks Small, Joel Tillinghast 
  28. The Point of Vanishing, Howard Axelrod
  29. The Great Northern Express, Howard Frank Mosher
  30. Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life, Ruth Franklin
  31. On Tyranny, Timothy Snyder 
  32. The Wine Lover’s Daughter, Anne Fadiman


  1. Soul at the White Heat, Joyce Carol Oates
  2. Readings, Michael Dirda 
  3. A Reading Diary, Alberto Manguel 
  4. My Private Property, Mary Ruefle 
  5. Best American Essays, 1996 editor Geoffrey Ward 
  6. Best American Essays 2016, editor Jonathan Franzen
  7. What Would Lynne Tillman Do, Lynne Tillman
  8. Am I Alone Here, Peter Orner


  1. Winter Morning Walks, Ted Kooser
  2. A Choice of Kipling’s Verse, ed T.S. Eliot
  3. The Best American Poetry 2016, ed. Edward Hirsch 
  4. The Night of the Iguana, Tennessee Williams 
  5. A Delicate Balance, Edward Albee 
  6. No Man’s Land, Harold Pinter 
  7. The Pupil, W.S. Merwin 
  8. Aftermath, Sandra M. Gilbert 
  9. Sailing Around the Room, Billy Collins 
  10. Life on Mars, Tracy K. Smith 
  11. Night Ringing, Laura Foley
  12. Event Boundaries, April Ossmann

Art and Architecture:

  1. Treasure Places, ed. Maggie Fergusson 
  2. The Work of Art in the World, Doris Sommer
  3. Cabin Porn, Zach Klein
  4. The Contemporaries, Roger White 
  5. Best American Infographics: 2016, ed. Garreth Cook 
  6. Reductionism in Art and Brain Science, Eric Kandel
  7. Projects, Andy Goldsworthy
  8. Blind Spot, Teju Cole
  9. Morandi’s Objects, Joel Meyerowitz 
  10. 2.To 1.How 3.See, David Salle 
  11. Unpacking my Library: Artists and Their Books, ed. Jo Steffans
  12. The Secret Life of the Pencil, A. Hammond and M. Tinney


  1. Seven Brief Lessons on Physics, Carlo Rovelli 
  2. The Where, the Why, and the How, eds. J. Volvovski, J. Rothman, M. Lamothe 
  3. Notes from the Field, Ed. Nora Gallagher 
  4. Argentine Wine, Laura Catena
  5. The Gene, Siddhartha Mukherjee 
  6. My Favorite Plant, ed. Jamaica Kincaid 
  7. How We Got to Now, Steven Johnson 
  8. Cultivating Delight, Diane Ackerman 
  9. Thoreau’s Maine Woods, Dan Tobyne
  10. Thoreau and the Language of Trees, Richard Higgins
  11. The Wild Garden, William Robinson ed by Rick Darke 
  12. Deep in the Green, Anne Raver 
  13. Dark Matter and the Dinosaurs, Lisa Randall 
  14. Wise Trees, D. Cook and L. Jenshe


  1. Faithful Place, Tana French  
  2. Broken Harbor, Tana French
  3. The Trespasser, Tana French
  4. X, Sue Grafton 
  5. Maigret and the Bum, Georges Simenon
  6. Maigret’s Holiday, Georges Simenon
  7. Robert B. Parker’s Slow Burn, Ace Atkins 
  8. Robert B. Parker’s Revelation, Robert Knott
  9. Taken, Robert Crais
  10. Deal Breaker, Harlan Coben
  11. Drop Shot, Harlan Coben 
  12. Fade Away, Harlan Coben 
  13. Back Spin, Harlan Coben 
  14. Home, Harlan Coben 
  15. Promise Me, Harlan Coben
  16. Earthly Remains, Donna Leon 
  17. The Late Show, Michael Connelly 
  18. Two Kinds of Truth, Michael Connelly  
  19. Trace, Archer Mayor
  20. The Midnight Line, Lee Child