The best books of the year, as chosen by LJ’s review editors, in the case of the top ten and the best of the rest, and by our reviewers and columnists, in the case of genre fiction and nonfiction. A fully annotated version of these lists will appear in upcoming LJReviews enewsletters and in the December issue of LJ.
For all the latest LJ reviews and more, visit Book Verdict! Book Verdict is fully accessible to all users, though certain content and functionality are only available to subscribers. If you're already an LJ subscriber, log in to your account. To view all subscription options, Get Started With Book Verdict Pro Today.
By Barbara Hoffert & Annalisa Pesek Brock-Broido, Lucie. Stay, Illusion: Poems. Knopf. ISBN 9780307962027. $26. Emotionally charged, baroquely sensuous, serenely gorgeous: Brock-Broido’s extraordinary language asks us to enter a world both strange and strangely familiar. The gorgeousness is edged by darkness, yet even as she reminds us of our frailty in a wayward world (“Your […]
By Therese Purcell Nielsen & Erin Shea Brosh, Allie. Hyperbole and a Half. Touchstone. ISBN 9781451666175. $17.99; ebk. ISBN 9781451666182. This illustrated memoir features 50 percent never-before-seen stories from Brosch’s popular blog of the same name. She writes about dogs, hot sauce, cake, and more in quirky, self-deprecating fashion. Her two-part blog post “Adventures in […]
Bittman, Mark. VB6: Eat Vegan Before 6:00 To Lose Weight and Restore Your Health…for Good. Clarkson Potter: Crown. ISBN 9780385344746. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780385344753. Upon being diagnosed as prediabetic and with pre–heart disease symptoms, New York Times food writer Bittman custom-made his own diet plan, becoming a part-time vegan. His regimen, which includes exercise, consists […]
Cool, Michel. Francis: A New World Pope. Eerdmans. ISBN 9780802871008. pap. $14. The book for Catholic and non-Catholic readers alike not only to learn about Jorge Maria Bergoglio, the Argentine-born Pope Francis, but to gain from Cool’s shrewd insights into vexing issues facing this new papacy and the church at large. Will Francis prove to […]
By Margaret Dominy Hirschfeld, Erik & others. The World’s Rarest Birds. Princeton Univ. (WildGuides). ISBN 9780691155968. $45. NAT HIST A landmark volume of unparalleled coverage, with the world’s endangered birds caught in the wild—photographically—thanks to a contest to secure the images, 977 of them. (Some birds were too rare to find, and an illustration must […]
By Elizabeth Nelson Berger, Jonah. Contagious: Why Things Catch On. S. & S. ISBN 9781451686579. $26; ebk. ISBN 9781451686593. BUS Berger provides a look at why some things catch on (and others don’t) by examining the six principles—STEPPS—that make something really popular and using a series of stories from different industries, from restaurants to technology, […]