Blogs

    Percival Everett

    It is one of the most profound, and entertaining, questions we can ask: what if? The idea of taking that untaken road – which ya can’t cause ya didn’t - allows us to wrestle and play with the paradoxical polarities and of fate and free (that manage, somehow, to curve round and meet in the middle.

    Rereading Knut Hamsun

    By J. Peder Zane

    When it comes to books, my only question is: What's next?

    So much lurking greatness, so little time. So many gaps — "The Man Without Qualities," "The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire," "Eloise." So much guilt.

    Georges Simenon

    By J. Peder Zane (2005)

    The New York Review of Books is more than a leading journal of ideas. It is also a literary miracle worker. Since 1999 it has brought dead books back to life through its Classic series.

    Future Classics, 2010-19

    Our critics claim we live in the past. But besides the bedrock belief that life is too short to read anything but the best, the staff at Top Ten Books knows that the timeless literature has much to say about own life and times. Still, the classics have to start somewhere and with that spirit in mind we are happy to share a list from our friends at the Literary Hub of the best books of the last decade 2010-19.

    Tom Wolfe, RIP

    We have lost a giant – one of the very best reporters and writers in American history.

    The Wall Street Journal reports that Tom Wolfe, the best-selling alchemist of fiction and nonfiction who wrote “The Bonfire of the Vanities,” “The Right Stuff” and countless other novels and works of journalism, died of pneumonia in a New York hospital yesterday. He was 88 years old.

    Tom Perrotta

         “Disappointment plagues the characters in [Tom] Perrotta’s novels,” writes Laura Miller in the New Yorker, “from the disaffected parents in Little Children to the divorced sex-education instructor in The Abstinence Teacher. Their marriages lack passion, their spouses cheat, their kids demand too much from them.

    George Saunders is Da Man!

    First he was invited to submit a Top Ten list, then he became just second American to win the Man Booker Prize. 

    Coincidence?

    Perhaps. In any event we offer an All American high-five, true-dat, chuch yo, way to go, to Mr. George Saunders.

    Susan Vreeland

    Susan Vreeland, a master of turning fine art into literature, has died at age 71, following complications from heart surgery.

    Her second novel, and breakthough work, Girl in Hyacinth Blue (1999), traces the ownership of a purported Vermeer painting back to World War II and Amsterdam, and still further back to the moment of the work's inspiration.

    Alexander McCall Smith

        You tell your publisher you have surefire hit – the story of a writer whose rental car complications force him to drive a bulldozer around Tuscany.

        You tell her it’s not a farce, but rather poignant.

        She tells you to find another agent.

        Unless, of course, your name is Alexander McCall Smith and you have already enjoyed so much success that she exclaims, “Brilliant!,” and you have enough imagination and wit to pull it off.

    Peter Blauner

    Peter Blauner is back! After an 11-year break from writing novels – the poor man had to make a living, crafting scripts for TV shows like “Law & Order: SVU” and “Blue Bloods” (my mom’s fave) – the Edgar Award-winner has delivered his seventh novel, Proving Ground.

    Pages

    New List

    Josephine Humphreys

    1. Moby-Dick by Herman Melville (1851).
    2. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain (1884).
    3. The Moviegoer by Walker Percy (1961).
    4. Love Medicine by Louise Erdrich (1984).
    5. Edisto by Padget Powell (1984).
    6. Bleak House by Charles Dickens (1853).
    7. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov (1955).
    8. The stories of Flannery O’Connor (1925–64).
    9. Light in August by William Faulkner (1932).
    10. Nausea by Jean-Paul Sartre (1938).




     

    Classic List

    Wally Lamb

    1. The Odyssey by Homer (ninth century b.c.e.?).
    2. Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes (1605, 1615).
    3. King Lear by William Shakespeare (1605).
    4. Tom Jones  by Henry Fielding (1749).
    5. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain (1884).
    6. Sister Carrie by Theodore Dreiser (1900).
    7. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (1925).
    8. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck (1939).
    9. The stories of Flannery O’Connor (1925–64).
    10. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez (1967). 


     





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