Best books 2015 (with some others thrown in)

UnknownI’m a book addict. I always carry one around and pack several when I travel. I keep a precarious tower of books beside my bed and a couple in the bathroom.

Of the hundreds I haul around each year, I complete a relative few. Not all books hold my interest. Sometimes it’s the writing or subject matter; other times it’s …well, I don’t know.

One of my New Year’s resolutions, is to read more books. But how many exactly? What number would be realistic?

To determine that, I made a list of the books I read in 2015. There were 26, about two a month. I’m thereby setting 26 as my quota.

Below you’ll find the books that made their way onto last year’s list; many of them were published prior to 2015. Some of these books I adored; you’ll find a star beside their author’s name. Some others were simply okay. (Please forgive me, fellow author, for saying that. I know the time and effort that went into your work. Remember: It’s me, not you.)

Note that many of these books have over-the-top subtitles. Don’t let that turn you off, as it often does me. Finally, rather than describe each of my 26-ers — which is overwhelming, given their number — I’m providing Amazon links, listing books alphabetically by title. All are nonfiction, except where noted.

What books have made it onto your 2015 list?




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All the Light We Cannot See
— Anthony Doerr (fiction)

Brain That Changes Itself: Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science
— Norman Doidge

Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania
— Erik Larson*

Department of Speculation
— Jenny Offill (fiction)*

Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine and the Murder of a President
— Candice Millard*

Elephant Company: The Inspiring Story of an Unlikely Hero and the Animals Who Helped Him Save Lives in World War II
— Vicki Croke

Ellen Foster
— Kaye Gibbons (fiction)*

English Spy
— Daniel Silva (fiction)

— Lily King (fiction)*

Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal
— Eric Schlosser*

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Forger’s Spell: A True Story of Vermeer, Nazis, and the Greatest Art Hoax of the Twentieth Century
— Edward Dolknick

Gray Mountain
— John Grisham (fiction)

Last Gift of Time: Life Beyond Sixty
— Carolyn G. Heilbrun

Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing
— Marie Kondo*

— Jami Attenberg (fiction)*

Lost in Shangri-La: A True Story of Survival, Adventure, and the Most Incredible Rescue Mission of World War II
— Mitchell Zuckoff*

tidying middlesteins WWII

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Never Broken: Songs Are Only Half the Story
— Jewel

The Professor and the Madman: A Tale of Murder, Insanity, and the Making of the Oxford English Dictionary
— Simon Winchester

Rescue Artist: A True Story of Art, Thieves, and the Hunt for a Missing Masterpiece
— Edward Dolnick*

River of Doubt: Theodore Roosevelt’s Darkest Journey
— Candice Millard*

Road to Character
— David Brooks*

rescue-artist river-of-doubt character
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Rogue Lawyer
— John Grisham (fiction)*

Rush: America’s Fevered Quest for Fortune, 1848-1853
— Edward Dolnick*

Silence: The Power of Quiet in a World Full of Noise
— Thich Nhaht Hanh

Small Move, Big Change: Using Microresolutions to Transform Your Life Permanently
— Caroline L. Arnold*

— Erik Larson
lawyer rush small-move
[embedit snippet=”break-code”]So you know: Linking directly to Amazon makes sharing these books easier for me and, I’m guessing, for you. Know that I get a small (microscopic?) commission should you purchase one of the books. Nice as that may be, I assure you, it ain’t enough to put my goldfish through college.

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