LJ Best Books 2017

It's time again for LJ’s annual Top Ten Best Books of the year, selected by our editors, as well as Top Five lists for genre fiction, nonfiction, poetry and literature, graphic novels, and SELF-e titles.   SEE WHO MADE THE LIST

Best Books 2012: Memoir

Busch, Benjamin. Dust to Dust. Ecco: HarperCollins. ISBN 9780062014849. $25.95; eISBN  9780062096784.
Busch addresses the sustaining value of art in the face of life and death from the perspective of one who has been to war. (LJ 3/1/12)

Cusk, Rachel. Aftermath: On Marriage and Separation. Farrar. ISBN 9780374102135. $23; eISBN 9781466820180.
This memoir is full of meditations on the corrosive effects of divorce upon one family intertwined with larger, mythic themes of destruction and rebirth. (LJ 7/12)

Halberstadt, Michèle. La Petite. Other. tr. by French by Linda Coverdale. ISBN 9781590515310. pap. $14.95; eISBN 9781590515327.
Halberstadt elegantly dissects the forces driving her 12-year-old self’s attempt at suicide and never drifts off course into sentimentality. (LJ 7/12)

Roth, Marco. The Scientists: A Family Romance. Farrar. ISBN 9780374210281. $23; eISBN 9781466825840.
This book examines the weight of the tremendous secrets kept by one rarefied family, uncovered as Roth slowly processes, with the aid of great literature, his father’s death. (Memoir Short Takes, 10/29/12)

Winterson, Jeanette. Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal? Grove. ISBN 9780802120106. $25; eISBN 9780802194756.
Winterson paints a detailed portrait of a life that saved itself in the face of lunacy and miserable parenting (with gratitude to those who lent a hand, including librarians). (LJ 11/1/11)