Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The year in view: as the days darken, the critics get reflective.(BOOKSIN THE MEDIA: PRESS)(Table). USA, LLC

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It's only just December, and already last week's papers were full of recommendations for books of the year and Christmas presents. Serving as a reminder of the literary happenings of 2009 (remember the furore around the publication of Julie Myerson's The Lost Child, Marilynne Robinson winning the Orange with Home, the rush to publish Michael Jackson books after the singer's death?), the lists also show the popular hits of the year.

Unsurprisingly, Man Booker-longlisted titles featured most, particularly Colm Toibin's Brooklyn (Viking); winner Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel (Fourth Estate); The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters (Virago); The Quickening Maze by Adam Foulds (Jonathan Cape); The Children's Book by A S Byatt (Chatto); Love and Summer by William Trevor (Viking); and Summertime by J M Coetzee (Harvill Secker). Other fiction choices included Lorrie Moore's novel A Gate at the Stairs (Faber); Too Much Happiness by Alice Munro (Faber); What Becomes by A L Kennedy (Jonathan Cape); This is How by M J Hyland (Canongate); The Year of the Flood by Margaret Atwood (Bloomsbury); and Stieg Larsson's The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets' Nest (MacLehose Press).


Non-fiction that impressed was Nigel Slater's Tender: A Cook and His Vegetable Patch (Fourth Estate); The Secret Lives of Somerset Maugham by Selina Hastings (John Murray); Vincent Van Gogh: The Letters (Thames & Hudson); The Three Emperors by Miranda Carter (Fig Tree); another cookery title, The Vegetarian Option by Simon Hopkinson (Quadrille); Family Britain by David Kynaston (Bloomsbury); and Lords of Finance by Liaquat Ahamed (Penguin).

And standing up for poetry, Don Paterson's Forward Prize-winning collection Rain (Faber).


* = Top form, ** = Flawed but worth a read, *** = Disappointing

Sex & Violence, Death & Silence by Gordon Burn (Faber 9780571229291 20 [pounds sterling])

* Independent

** Guardian

"Burn keeps himself honest not only by being knowledgeable, thorough and readable, but by mainly interviewing rather than interpreting artists" Guardian "The qualities that mark out his writing are clarity, energy, and an immediate grip on the reader's attention" Independent

Black Water Rising by Attica Locke (Serpent's Tail 9781846687297 12.99 [pounds sterling])

* Independent

** Guardian

"Some novels never quite recover from the brilliance of their opening chapters ... but it's still a powerful and skilfully contructed conspiracy thriller" Guardian "Convoluted similies are minor faults in an impressive, well-plotted and intelligent crime drama" Independent

Going Rogue by Sarah Palin (HarperCollins US, 9780061939891, 18.99 [pounds sterling])

** Guardian

** Observer

"In the course of more than 400 breathless pages, one learns enough to shudder at the thought of President Palin" Guardian "Sarah Palin's snug, snowbound view of the world is that of someone from a very small place" Observer

A Change in Altitude by Anite Shreve (Little, Brown 9781408700716 16.99 [pounds sterling])

* Guardian

"She never loses her capacity to surprise and enlighten" Guardian


Title Author Publisher

James Lees-Milne: The Michael Bloch John Murray
The River Cafe Classic Gray/Rogers Michael Joseph
Italian ...
Economy Gastronomy McAvedy/Merrett Michael Joseph
Spade & Archer Joe Gores Orion
Conquest Juliet Barker Little, Brown
Getting OurWay Christopher Meyer Weidenfeld
How Markets Fail John Cassidy Allen Lane
Small Memories Saramago/Jull Costa Harvill Secker
The Invention of the Shlomo Sand/Lotan Verso
The Great Silence Juliet Nicolson John Murray
Walter Benjamin and Wizisla/Shuttleworth Libris
1415: HenryV'sYear of Ian Mortimer Bodley Head
A Dead Hand Paul Theroux Hamish Hamilton
Too Big to Fail Andrew Ross Sorkin Allen Lane
The Man in the Wooden Jane Gardam Chatto
The Last Englishman Roland Chambers Faber
The Kindly Ones Jonathan Littell Chatto
The Frock-Coated Tristram Hunt Allen Lane
The English Rebel David Horspool Viking
The Dogs and the Wolves Irene Nemirovsky Chatto
Stirred but not Shaken Keith Floyd Sidgwick & Jackson
Daily Telegraph
River Cottage Everyday Hugh Fearnley- Bloomsbury
Rick Stein's Far Rick Stein BBC Books
Eastern Odyssey
Queen Elizabeth the William Shawcross Macmillan
Queen ...
Occupied City David Peace Faber
InherentVice Thomas Pynchon Jonathan Cape
IamOzzy OzzyOsbourne Sphere
FinestYears Max Hastings HarperPress
The Defence of the ChristopherAndrew Allen Lane
The Death of Bunny Nick Cave Canongate
Armistice Nick Stafford Quercus
Cheever: A Life Blake Bailey Cape
Lived in London ed Emily Cole Yale
Mad World Paula Byrne HarperPress
Mirrors Galeano traps Fried Portobello
Ship of Fools Fintan O'Toole Faber
The Embrace Magrelli traps Faber
The Mother's Tale Camilla Noli Orion
The Ninth Wave Russell Celyn Jones Seren
The Others Siba al-Harez Telegram
The Well and the Mine Gin Phillips Virago
What's Really Wrong Brian Whitaker Sagi Books
with the ...
White Ravens Owen Sheers Seren
My Father's Tears John Updike Hamish Hamilton
Behind Closed Doors AmandaVickery Yale UP
Venice: Pure City PeterAckroyd Chatto
Bulb Anna Pavord Mitchell Beazley
Weeds and Wild flowers AliceOswald Faber
The Storm of War Andrew Roberts Allen Lane
Blood Born Kathryn Fox Hodder
Blood Rivals Martin Howden John Blake
Bullet Proof Matt Croucher Century
Lost Dogs and Lonely Lucy Dillon Hodder
Blood, Iron & Gold Christian Wolmar Atlantic Books
Breakfast with Socrates Robert Rowland Smith Profile
Hiroshima Andrew/Rotter OUP
ImporantArtifads Leanne Shapton Bloomsbury
and ...
Invisible PaulAuster Faber
Policing Controversry Ian Blair Profile Books
The Group Mary Mdarthy Virago
Under the Dome Stephen King Hodder
The Master and His -- Yale UP
The Virgin Gardener Laetitia Maklouf Bloomsbury

Title Newspaper Date

James Lees-Milne: The Daily Express 27/11
The River Cafe Classic Daily Mail 27/11
Italian ...
Economy Gastronomy Daily Mail 27/11
Spade & Archer Daily Mirror 27/11
Conquest Independent Z7/11
Getting OurWay Independent 27/11
How Markets Fail Independent 27/11
Small Memories Independent 27/11
The Invention of the Independent 27/11
The Great Silence Independent 27/11
Walter Benjamin and Independent 27/11
1415: HenryV'sYear of Independent 27/11
A Dead Hand Independent 27/11
Too Big to Fail Daily Telegraph 28/11
The Man in the Wooden Daily Telegraph 28/11
The Last Englishman Daily Telegraph 28/11
The Kindly Ones Daily Telegraph 28/11
The Frock-Coated Daily Telegraph 28/11
The English Rebel Daily Telegraph 28111
The Dogs and the Wolves Daily Telegraph 28/11
Stirred but not Shaken 28/11

River Cottage Everyday Daily Telegraph 28/11

Rick Stein's Far Daily Telegraph 28/11
Eastern Odyssey
Queen Elizabeth the Daily Telegraph 28/11
Queen ...
Occupied City Daily Telegraph 28/11
InherentVice Daily Telegraph 28/11
IamOzzy Daily Telegraph 28/11
FinestYears Daily Telegraph 28/11
The Defence of the Financial Times 28/11
The Death of Bunny Financial Times 28/11
Armistice Guardian 28/11
Cheever: A Life Guardian 28/11
Lived in London Guardian 28/11
Mad World Guardian 28/11
Mirrors Guardian 28/11
Ship of Fools Guardian 28/11
The Embrace Guardian 28/11

The Mother's Tale Guardian 28/11
The Ninth Wave Guardian 28/11
The Others Guardian 28/11
The Well and the Mine Guardian 28/11
What's Really Wrong Guardian 28/11
with the ...
White Ravens Guardian 28/11
My Father's Tears Guardian 28/11
Behind Closed Doors Guardian 28/11
Venice: Pure City Tmes 28/11
Bulb Times 28/11
Weeds and Wild flowers Times 28/11
The Storm of War Times 28/11
Blood Born News of the World 29/11
Blood Rivals News of the World 29/11
Bullet Proof News of the World 29/11
Lost Dogs and Lonely News of the World 29/11
Blood, Iron & Gold Observer 29/11
Breakfast with Socrates Observer 29/11
Hiroshima Observer 29/11
ImporantArtifads Observer 29/11
and ...
Invisible Observer 29/11
Policing Controversry Observer 29/11
The Group Observer 29/11
Under the Dome Observer 29/11
The Master and His Sunday Times 29/11
The Virgin Gardener Sunday Times 29/11


Title Author Publisher

Just Me Sheila Hancock Bloomsbury
Julia Donaldson The Gruffalo Macmillan Children's

Title Newspaper Date

Just Me Sunday Times 29/11
Julia Donaldson Independent on 29/11


Title Author Publisher

Pantomime Life of Andrew McConne Canongate
Joseph ... II Stott
Going Rogue Sarah Palin HarperCollins
Angel self-help -- --
Irving Penn: Small Irving Penn 1 Paul Getty Museum
Seeing Things Oliver Postgate Canongate
Let it Bleed EthanA Russell Little, Brown

Title Newspaper Date

Pantomime Life of Daily Express 27/11
Joseph ...
Going Rogue Sunday Times 29/11
Angel self-help Sunday Times 29/11
Irving Penn: Small Sunday Telegraph 29/11
Seeing Things Sunday Telegraph 29/11
Let it Bleed Sunday Telegraph 29/11

Source Citation
"The year in view: as the days darken, the critics get reflective." The Bookseller 5411 (2009): 46. Academic OneFile. Web. 6 Jan. 2010. .

Gale Document Number:A215410076

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