Looking for a good book? Here are my best reads in English of the past two years.
- The Colour of Magic. Terry Pratchett 1983. Lavishly ornate humorous fantasy.
- Dancing with strangers. Inga Clendinnen 2003. On contacts between the first English penal colony and the aboriginals at Sydney Cove in 1788-92.
- On the Origin of Species. Charles Darwin 1859. (Abbreviated version of the 1st edition, ed. J.A. Secord 2008.) Don’t miss the appended collection of contemporary reactions!
- The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay. Michael Chabon 2000. Two Jewish kids make up a comic-book super hero…
- Metal detecting & archaeology. Ed. Suzie Thomas & Peter G. Stone 2009. Many illuminating perspectives.
- Remarkable creatures – epic adventure in the search for the origins of species. Sean B. Carroll 2009. 150 years of continual discoveries.
- Carter beats the Devil. Glen David Gold 2001. Novel set in the golden age of stage magic.
- The Sherlock Holmes mysteries. Arthur Conan Doyle. (Signet Classics 2005.) Sleuthy!
- Shenzhen. A travelogue from China. Guy Delisle 2003. Non-fic graphic novel.
- The Herring Seller’s Apprentice. L.C. Tyler 2007. Finely constructed and humorous mystery.
- Society without God. What the least religious nations can tell us about contentment. Phil Zuckerman 2008. An outsider’s perspective on endemic godlessness.
- The Deeper Meaning of Liff. Douglas Adams & John Lloyd 1992. Lots of fun! Don’t miss the index!
- The End of Biblical Studies. Hector Avalos 2007. The author argues for a general secular study of ancient literature to replace Bible studies, which no longer produce any new insights and also promote pernicious religionism.
- Roughing it. Mark Twain 1872. Humorous memoir of the author’s youth. I read it for free on my smartphone.
What were your best reads of the year?