The New York Times’ 10 Best Books Of 2011

December 11, 2011

It’s that time of year again; the lists of best books of the year are coming out and there’s almost nothing better to excite reader interest. The Times already released their 100 Notable Books Of The Year list and now we have their picks for the 10 best books of the year. How many of them have you read?


The Art Of Fielding by Chad Harbach
A baseball star at a small college near Lake Michigan launches a routine throw that goes disastrously off course and inadvertently changes the lives of five people, including the college president, a gay teammate and the president’s daughter.

11/22/63 by Stephen King
Receiving a horrific essay from a GED student with a traumatic past, high-school English teacher Jake Epping is enlisted by a friend to travel back in time to prevent the assassination of John F. Kennedy, a mission for which he must befriend troubled loner Lee Harvey Oswald.

Swamplandia! by Karen Russell
A first novel by the author of the short-story collection, St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves finds the Bigtree children struggling to protect their Florida Everglades alligator-wrestling theme park from a sophisticated competitor after losing their parents.

Ten Thousand Saints by Eleanor Henderson
When his best friend Teddy dies of an overdose on the last day of 1987, Jude Keffy-Horn finds his relationship with drugs and his parents devolving into the extreme when he gets caught up in an underground youth culture known as straight edge.

The Tiger’s Wife by Téa Obreht
Remembering childhood stories her grandfather once told her, young physician Natalia becomes convinced that he spent his last days searching for “the deathless man,” a vagabond who claimed to be immortal. As Natalia struggles to understand why her grandfather, a deeply rational man would go on such a farfetched journey, she stumbles across a clue that leads her to the extraordinary story of the tiger’s wife.


Arguably by Christopher Hitchens
A collection of the noted author’s essays includes his early writings on civil rights, Vietnam, and international incidents, as well as columns on the Clintons, the Catholic Church, Mother Theresa, radical Islam, and an array of reflections on politics.

The Boy In The Moon by Ian Brown
A Canadian journalist traces his efforts to understand the extremely rare genetic mutation that causes his son to possess an unusual facial appearance, an inability to speak and a compulsion to hit himself, a disorder for which the author has traveled the world to speak with medical specialists and connect with other affected families.

Malcolm X by Manning Marable
An authoritative biography of Malcolm X draws on new research to reveal information not contained in his autobiography, including the true story behind his assasination. By the author of Beyond Black and White: Transforming African-American Politics.

Thinking, Fast And Slow by Daniel Kahneman
A Nobel Prize-winning psychologist draws on years of research to introduce his “machinery of the mind” model on human decision making to reveal the faults and capabilities of intuitive versus logical thinking, providing insights into such topics as optimism, the unpredictability of happiness and the psychological pitfalls of risk-taking.

A World On Fire by Amanda Foreman
An award-winning author presents a history of the role of British citizens in the American Civil War that offers insight into the interdependencies of both nations and how the Union worked to block diplomatic relations between England and the Confederacy, tracing the military service of British volunteers on both sides of the conflict.