Other People's Books

Below is a chronological log of other people's books I've read in 2017. (Most of the list is fiction and does not include books I read for research purposes or books I made small dips into.)

There were several books on this list I had attempted unsuccessfully to read as a teenager and chose to revisit this year as a slightly more patient adult reader. Otherwise, there was no master plan at the start of the year as to what would be read, but reading one book with a particular theme often led to the reading of related books. Certain themes kept resurfacing and felt especially pertinent to this moment in time.

Books with one asterisk were excellent reads. Books with two asterisks were the knockouts that held on tight and are still with me.


A Manual for Cleaning Women – Lucia Berlin **
Chelsea Girls – Eileen Myles *
Every Day is for the Thief – Teju Cole **
In the Country – Mia Alvar **
Homegoing – Yaa Gyasi **
Winesburg, Ohio – Sherwood Anderson
The Luminaries – Eleanor Catton
The Sellout – Paul Beatty *
The Underground Railroad – Colson Whitehead
Love in the Time of Cholera – Gabriel García Márquez
10:04 – Ben Lerner
Lost in the City – Edward P. Jones **
The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks about Race – Jesmyn Ward **
Invisible Man – Ralph Ellison
The Known World – Edward P. Jones
A History of the World in 10 ½ Chapters – Julian Barnes
Giovanni’s Room – James Baldwin
Blood Meridian – Cormac McCarthy
Dept. Of Speculation – Jenny Offill
The Strange Library – Haruki Murakami
Slaughterhouse-Five – Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. *
Open City – Teju Cole *
A Clockwork Orange – Anthony Burgess
Eileen – Ottessa Moshfegh
The Secret History – Donna Tartt
The Sun Also Rises – Ernest Hemingway
All the Names – José Saramago
The Blazing World – Siri Hustvedt *
My Name is Red – Orhan Pamuk
Neuromancer – William Gibson
Kindred – Octavia Butler **
The Man in the High Castle – Philip K. Dick
Song of Solomon – Toni Morrison *
At the Existentialist Café – Sarah Bakewell
In Persuasion Nation – George Saunders
Hello, Moto – Nnedi Okorafor
Futureland – Walter Mosley *
Robot Uprisings – Daniel Wilson *