The year 2014 was a good year for reading. I was more prolific than other years, having read (assuming I finish the last two books I am presently reading by December 31st) a total of 24 books:
- The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan (currently reading)
- 1493: Uncovering the New World Columbus Created by Charles C. Mann (currently reading)
- 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus by Charles C. Mann
- Hiding in Plain Sight by Nuruddin Farah
- The Son by Philipp Meyer
- The Empire of Necessity: Slavery, Freedom, and Deception in the New World by Greg Grandin
- The Moor’s Account by Laila Lalami
- The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami
- The Tennis Partner by Abraham Verghesi
- Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage by Haruki Murakami
- The Abstinence Teacher by Tom Perrotta
- A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki
- Cien años de soledad by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
- Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
- Open City by Teju Cole
- The Good Lord Bird by James McBride
- Giovanni’s Room by James Baldwin
- Captain Sir Richard Francis Burton by Edward Rice
- Sweet Tooth by Ian McEwan
- The Heart of the Matter by Graham Greene
- Nairobi Heat by Mukoma wa Ngugi
- Wave by Sonali Deraniyagala
- The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
- Duke: A Life of Duke Ellington by Terry Teachout
Of these, two are re-reads: Cien años de soledad and Wind Up Bird Chronicle. The first one I decided to read fifteen years after I had read it first (this time in Spanish) in honor of Mr. Garcia Marquez on his passing. The latter because I was so disappointed by the Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki that I needed a Murakami fix to fill the void.
Most of what I read was pretty good, some definitely better than others. The three that definitely stood out as something special were first The Son by Philipp Meyer and The Good Lord Bird by James McBride. Then Lalami’s The Moor’s Account deserves a special mention, not just because it was a great read, but because it has really inspired me to learn more about American history, and by that I mean the history of the people that were here before me and what happened to them, why, and how that relates to who we are today. And answers to those questions are in fact, in their own various ways, addressed by Meyer and McBrides’ books.
Overall, a good year indeed.
One response to “My Year in Books 2014”
I came across this purely by accident on Google Images and was blown away by how similar our reading lists and reasons for reading were. Small world.
The Son, One Hundred Years of Solitude, 1491, 1493, The Empire of Necessity, and The Moor’s Account were all tremendous. Glad you liked them, too!