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Top Ten Reads This Year (2011)


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#1 Libaax

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 12:40 PM

I see we read many books in what are you reading thread here.

So the idea is simple and interesting to see which ten books you thought are the best,fun reads this year for you ?


Also Top 10 short stories, novella list on its own.


I have read 79 novels/collections this year so it wasnt easy choosing top 10.

#2 deuce

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 12:53 PM

Cool topic AND on the right board. B) Hard to provide a list on such short notice. I'll just say that Willocks' The Religion is the best novel I read this year and the best written in the last TEN years, IMO. :)

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#3 Libaax

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 12:58 PM

Its hard to choose thats why i made this thread here. Something that makes us think and rate with our minds for a while which books we thought are worth as the best 10 this year. I cant wait to see which types of books,authors people here prefer.

Here is my list after much thinking, editing and removing/adding books.

1. 1984 by George Orwell
2. The Dirdir by Jack Vance
3. Complete Poems by Edith Södergran( she is sort of Edgar Allan Poe of nordic poetry)
4. Siddharta by Herman Hesse
5. Butcher's Moon by Richard Stark
6. Ticket to the boneyard by Lawrence Block
7. Somewhere in time by Richard Matheson
8. Det Mest Förbjudna by Kerstin Thorvall( 70s powerful,personal feminist novel)
9.Merkabah Rider: Tales of a High Planes Drifter by Edward M.Erdelec
10. A Mercy by Toni Morrison

#4 EM Erdelac

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 05:37 PM

Wow! Thanks, Libaax! The Rider's definitely in good company there.

Mine would be:

1. The Fortunes of War - Patrick O'Brian
2. The Surgeon's Mate - Patrick O'Brian
3. The Look of The West - Foster-Harris
4. The Witches - Roald Dahl
5. The Illustrated Egyptian Book Of The Dead - Ramses Saleem
6 .The Manitou - Graham Masterton
7. One Lonely Night - Mickey Spillane
8. The Lives Of The Twelve Caesers - Suetnonius
9. Watch For Me On The Mountain - Forrest Carter
10. The Iron Dream - Norman Spinrad

#5 Libaax

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 06:31 PM

Wow! Thanks, Libaax! The Rider's definitely in good company there.

Mine would be:

1. The Fortunes of War - Patrick O'Brian
2. The Surgeon's Mate - Patrick O'Brian
3. The Look of The West - Foster-Harris
4. The Witches - Roald Dahl
5. The Illustrated Egyptian Book Of The Dead - Ramses Saleem
6 .The Manitou - Graham Masterton
7. One Lonely Night - Mickey Spillane
8. The Lives Of The Twelve Caesers - Suetnonius
9. Watch For Me On The Mountain - Forrest Carter
10. The Iron Dream - Norman Spinrad



I had to add Merkabah Rider since it was one of the coolest book i read this year. Awesome action, quality mythlogy and awesome hero. Im the Mohammed fan that added you as Goodreads friend by the way. I have different nicks. Weird seeing you here and there.

What a fun mix your top ten is! Western,historical fiction, ancient classic etc.

I read Petronius, Ovid in Ancient Greece/Rome lit class which made me want to read Suetonius The Twelve Ceaser in the near future.

Edited by Libaax, 01 December 2011 - 06:33 PM.


#6 El Borak's Li'l Brother

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 10:06 PM

A great idea. But I come to this thread a little embarrassed and disappointed in myself as I have only read 23 books thus far this year. And I am not as scholarly a reader as most here.

Of my 23 books, all of which I enjoyed, I'd say the most fun were (in no particular order)...

1. Edgar Rice Burrough's A Princess of Mars (my third time)
2. Rex Stout's Three Witnesses
3. Lee Goldberg's Mr. Monk is Miserable
4. Lee Goldberg's Mr. Monk and the Dirty Cop
5. Lee Goldberg's Mr. Monk in Trouble
6. Richard Matheson's I Am Legend
7. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's A Study in Scarlet (my second time)
8. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's The Sign of Four (my second time)
9. Louis L'Amour's West of Tularosa
10. Fritz Leiber's Swords and Deviltry (my second time)
Crom!

#7 THE KID

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 12:26 AM

Libaax :rolleyes: Excellent topic!

I'm going to build up to the number one read of all year of my top 10 - Soooo -
Top countdown to Richard's top ten best reads this year was an awesome year with hundreds of books read from libraries, kindles, used book stores, and more. Number 10 is

Posted Image



Jane Leavy, the acclaimed author of the New York Times bestseller Sandy Kofax a lefty returns with a biography of an American original—number 7, Mickey Mantle. Drawing on more than 500 interviews with friends and family, teammates, and opponents, she delivers the definitive account of Mantle's life, mining the mythology of The Mick for the true story of a luminous and illustrious talent with an achingly damaged soul.

Meticulously reported and elegantly written, The Last Boy is a baseball tapestry that weaves together episodes from the author's weekend with The Mick in Atlantic City, where she interviewed her hero in 1983, after he was banned from baseball, with reminiscences from friends and family of the boy from Commerce, Oklahoma, who would lead the Yankees to seven world championships, be voted the American League's Most Valuable Player three times, win the Triple Crown in 1956, and duel teammate Roger Maris for Babe Ruth's home run crown in the summer of 1961—the same boy who would never grow up.

As she did so memorably in her biography of Sandy Koufax, Jane Leavy transcends the hyperbole of hero worship to reveal the man behind the coast-to-coast smile, who grappled with a wrenching childhood, crippling injuries, and a genetic predisposition to alcoholism. In The Last Boy she chronicles her search to find out more about the person he was and, given what she discovers, to explain his mystifying hold on a generation of baseball fans, who were seduced by that lopsided, gap-toothed grin. It is an uncommon biography, with literary overtones: not only a portrait of an icon, but an investigation of memory itself. How long was the Tape Measure Home Run? Did Mantle swing the same way right-handed and left-handed? What really happened to his knee in the 1951 World Series? What happened to the red-haired, freckle-faced boy known back home as Mickey Charles?

"I believe in memory, not memorabilia," Leavy writes in her preface. But in The Last Boy, she discovers that what we remember of our heroes—and even what they remember of themselves—is only where the story begins.

Edited by Richard, 04 December 2011 - 10:37 PM.

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#8 EM Erdelac

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 06:49 AM

I thought that was you, Mohammed. Good to see you on here.

Merkabah Rider 3 just came out in Kindle - print ought to be out next week.

I read far less books this year than I thought I had as well, Lil Brother. In fact I sorta cheated on number ten - I just started The Iron Dream, but I really like it so far. Very unique, the premise being what if Adolf Hitler had found success as a pulp fiction cover artist, moved to America, and then wrote a hugely successful sci-fi fantasy series basically about Nazism. Fanboys show up at conventions dressed as gestapo and the like, but there never was a World War II.

#9 Ironhand

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 08:25 AM

Naziism might have remained in much better odor if it had never come to power and showed its true face.

Edited by Ironhand, 02 December 2011 - 08:26 AM.

"Did you deem yourself strong, because you were able to twist the heads off civilized folk, poor weaklings with muscles like rotten string? Hell! Break the neck of a wild Cimmerian bull before you call yourself strong. I did that, before I was a full-grown man...!" - Conan, in "Shadows in Zamboula", by Robert E. Howard
"... you speak of Venarium familiarly. Perhaps you were there?"
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#10 Libaax

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 11:20 AM

A great idea. But I come to this thread a little embarrassed and disappointed in myself as I have only read 23 books thus far this year. And I am not as scholarly a reader as most here.

Of my 23 books, all of which I enjoyed, I'd say the most fun were (in no particular order)...

1. Edgar Rice Burrough's A Princess of Mars (my third time)
2. Rex Stout's Three Witnesses
3. Lee Goldberg's Mr. Monk is Miserable
4. Lee Goldberg's Mr. Monk and the Dirty Cop
5. Lee Goldberg's Mr. Monk in Trouble
6. Richard Matheson's I Am Legend
7. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's A Study in Scarlet (my second time)
8. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's The Sign of Four (my second time)
9. Louis L'Amour's West of Tularosa
10. Fritz Leiber's Swords and Deviltry (my second time)


Dont forget to list your top 10 short stories/novellas.

Like me you read Sherlock Holmes collections that gives you a few to nominate.

I know how you about being dissapointed about reading 23 books. I was up to 60 books in the first 6-7 months. After that i have barely read any books that wasnt for Uni classes work. For constant reader it feel awkward, embarrassing not to read as much as you like. When other less enjoyable things get in the way.

Edited by Libaax, 02 December 2011 - 11:21 AM.


#11 ollonois

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 10:17 PM

glubs... I don't know even if I have read 10 books... hehehe... seriously my average is 20 or so books a year, this one I have read 19 or so, many Ospreys, and I'm currently reading maybe my favourite The dome by Stephen King and I hope read three or so in december... I have some questions for you, reading books is your mainly occupation for your free time? don't you read comics or blogs too? and what about tv series or films? videogames? I think people reading 50-100 or more books a year are centered only on reading for their free time
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#12 Libaax

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Posted 03 December 2011 - 02:21 AM

I have some questions for you, reading books is your mainly occupation for your free time? don't you read comics or blogs too? and what about tv series or films? videogames? I think people reading 50-100 or more books a year are centered only on reading for their free time


Those are very good questions.

For me i was first an avid gamer, manga/comics reader,tv/film and maybe read 2-5 books a year. Not a reader at all. When i discovered my way to reading for my free time as enjoyment my other hobbies has near died out. I dont buy videogames anymore as new. I read only few select american/european/japanese comics. 10-13 comics a month. Maybe few hours a month i read new comics. Funny enough Dark Horse Conan comics made me a book reader after i read REH and co.

I watch less than 10 tv shows and i have lovefilm account because reading made me film fan. I like classic film noir, 70s hollywood. Kurosawa, Melville etc. Enjoying the written word made me respect film/tv writing,acting.

So i read 80-100 books a year because i taken the money i spent on games, comics 80% over to book buys. Its simple questions. Would i rather buy Robert E Howard collection or read some generic superhero comic ? Read Jack Vance/Poe/Lord Dunsany prose style perfection or watch tv shows i dont really enjoy because im bored ? Easy answers when its about making time being a constant reader :)

Only boring school work get in the way of me reading something everyday!

Edited by Libaax, 03 December 2011 - 02:24 AM.


#13 Ironhand

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Posted 03 December 2011 - 07:48 AM

Keep with the schoolwork, Libaax, it's only temporary. :)

I used to have a $50 to $70 per month reading habit, 6 - 12 books per month, 2 - 3 days per book; then I got a computer. That killed my reading habit. Now I buy one or two books a month, and have trouble keeping up. Of course, I subscribe to a SF magazine and 3 science magazines. :blink:

Edited by Ironhand, 03 December 2011 - 07:49 AM.

"Did you deem yourself strong, because you were able to twist the heads off civilized folk, poor weaklings with muscles like rotten string? Hell! Break the neck of a wild Cimmerian bull before you call yourself strong. I did that, before I was a full-grown man...!" - Conan, in "Shadows in Zamboula", by Robert E. Howard
"... you speak of Venarium familiarly. Perhaps you were there?"
"I was," grunted [Conan]. "I was one of the horde that swarmed over the hills. I hadn't yet seen fifteen snows, but already my name was repeated about the council fires." - "Beyond the Black River", by Robert E. Howard

Read my Conan screenplays at The Scrolls of Ironhand (in particular my transcription of THE FROST GIANT'S DAUGHTER in Act II of "The Snow Devil") at
http://www.scrollsof...d.us/index.html or at
http://www.delicious...ic=ConanProject

#14 Taran

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Posted 03 December 2011 - 07:59 AM

Hmm, let me think... (no particular order)

Blood Meridian - Cormac McCarthy
The Road - Cormac McCarthy
The Book of the New Sun - Gene Wolfe (4 books, actually, but what the hey)
Pirate Freedom - Gene Wolfe
The Fall of the Kings - Ellen Kushner & Delia Sherman (I was so happy I found this at the used bookstore shortly after re-reading The Privilege of the Sword)
The Last Hero - Terry Pratchett
Stardust - Neil Gaiman
Jack the Giant Killer - Charles de Lint (also came with Drink Down the Moon, which was pretty awesome too, just not as awesome)
The Last Light of the Sun - Guy Gavriel Kay
Ysabel - Guy Gavriel Kay

Well, that makes 10.

Edited by Taran, 03 December 2011 - 08:00 AM.

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#15 ollonois

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Posted 03 December 2011 - 12:32 PM

Libaax:

or watch tv shows i dont really enjoy because im bored ?


hehehe... just like me, although are interesting for me shows like Lost, Supernatural, The Tudors and even Rome become boring for me, I prefer the writing language than the audiovisual medium
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#16 Libaax

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Posted 03 December 2011 - 12:55 PM

Keep with the schoolwork, Libaax, it's only temporary. :)

I used to have a $50 to $70 per month reading habit, 6 - 12 books per month, 2 - 3 days per book; then I got a computer. That killed my reading habit. Now I buy one or two books a month, and have trouble keeping up. Of course, I subscribe to a SF magazine and 3 science magazines. :blink:


My school work is literary classes in Uni so really its far from boring. Reading Orwell, Shakespeare, Homer, Euripides, modern poetry, classic poetry, plays is not boring. Only boring thing is when i have to write technical literary analysis like im doing now about Dashiell Hammett's classic Red Harvest.

You want school work not to be boring, study literature when its your main passion, hobby in your free time hehe. 20-30 books i have read this year have been for school work which felt like cheating :D

Im real book buyer addict, i maybe go one month or two without buying new books. Usually buy 3-4 books a month, new books and not second hand. This month because of christmas and free from school work holiday i ordered 10 books. From Bradbury to Max Allan Collins, Wiliam Hope Hodgson.

#17 THE KID

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Posted 03 December 2011 - 04:43 PM

Number 9 is

Posted Image




First published in 1926, this entertaining and dramatic biography forever installed outlaw Billy the Kid in the pantheon of mythic heroes from the Old West and is still considered the single most influential portrait of Billy in this century. Saga focuses on the Kid's life and experiences in the bloody war between the Murphy-Dolan and Tunstall-McSween gangs in and around Lincoln, New Mexico, between 1878 and 1881. Burns paints the Kid as a boyish Robin Hood or romantic knight galvanized into a life of crime and killing by the war's violence and bloodshed. Billy represented the romantic and anarchic Old West that the march of civilization was rapidly displacing. His destroyer was Pat Garrett, the courageous sheriff of Lincoln County. Garrett's shooting of Billy in 1881 hastened the closing of the American frontier. Walter Noble Burns's Saga of Billy the Kid kindled a fascination in Billy the Kid that survives to this day. Richard W. Etulain's foreword discusses the singular importance of Saga in the historical literature on Billy the Kid and the Lincoln County War.

Edited by Richard, 10 December 2011 - 12:26 AM.

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#18 EM Erdelac

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Posted 04 December 2011 - 08:05 AM

Ironhand - Well, I've never been a fan of Nazis, but it's a pretty intriguing concept. Even has faux endorsements from Michael Moorcock and Harlan Ellison on the covers, praising Hitler's writing. Kind of a weird one to read on the bus, for certain.

Taran - Blood Meridian is probably the best book I've read in the last ten years. I absolutely hated it at first and struggled to get through the first half, and then something just clicked. I guess I got used to the prose or something. It's brilliant. Hypnotic.

I didn't care for The Road so much, nor No Country...., but I think Outer Dark is pretty amazing too.

I haven't read Gaiman's Stardust, but I recently saw the movie and thought it was one of the best fantasy films I'd seen in a long time.

Richard - I was writing a Billy novel for a while and devoured all things Henry McCarty. Have you ever read Pat Garrett's Authentic Life of Billy The Kid, the version annotated by Frederick Nolan (who wrote The West of Billy The Kid - probably my favorite book on the subject)? The book is mostly a dime novel of course, no more realistic than John Rollins Ridge's Joaquin Murrietta, but there's some gold in there, and Nolan's notes are great. I never have picked up Walter Noble Burns yet. I'll get to it one of these days.

#19 Libaax

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Posted 04 December 2011 - 02:27 PM

Top 10 short story Reads:


Pigeons from Hell by Robert E. Howard - classic, one of the best REH stories.
The Naval Treaty (Holmes) by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Comfort to The Enemy by Elmore Leonard
Sword woman by Robert E. Howard - Dark Agnes is female warrior dream come true. I adore her.
The One Who Waits by Ray Bradbury - SF/horror story by a master of weird short stories.
The Red-Headed League (Holmes) by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle - best Holmes story so far to me.
Hoichi the Earless by Lafcadio Hearn
Vultures of Whapeton by Robert E. Howard - Howard/Hammett hybrid heh!
Fader's Waft by Jack Vance - one of the last Dying Earth stories but witty,weird wizard story.
Freitzke's Turn by Jack Vance

Edited by Libaax, 04 December 2011 - 02:32 PM.


#20 THE KID

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Posted 04 December 2011 - 07:37 PM

Ironhand - Well, I've never been a fan of Nazis, but it's a pretty intriguing concept. Even has faux endorsements from Michael Moorcock and Harlan Ellison on the covers, praising Hitler's writing. Kind of a weird one to read on the bus, for certain.

Taran - Blood Meridian is probably the best book I've read in the last ten years. I absolutely hated it at first and struggled to get through the first half, and then something just clicked. I guess I got used to the prose or something. It's brilliant. Hypnotic.

I didn't care for The Road so much, nor No Country...., but I think Outer Dark is pretty amazing too.

I haven't read Gaiman's Stardust, but I recently saw the movie and thought it was one of the best fantasy films I'd seen in a long time.

Richard - I was writing a Billy novel for a while and devoured all things Henry McCarty. Have you ever read Pat Garrett's Authentic Life of Billy The Kid, the version annotated by Frederick Nolan (who wrote The West of Billy The Kid - probably my favorite book on the subject)? The book is mostly a dime novel of course, no more realistic than John Rollins Ridge's Joaquin Murrietta, but there's some gold in there, and Nolan's notes are great. I never have picked up Walter Noble Burns yet. I'll get to it one of these days.


EM: Yes - I have this book and I believe just about every book written on Billy The Kid. I've been going through the mom and pop bookstore that has a box of old Western magazines and finding stories and pictures of the old west. I found one magazine that shows the Gun that shot Billy The Kid with Pat Garrett's wife holding this huge gun.

The Burns book is probably the most authentic one of all but the other books are interesting too.
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