Saturday, January 2, 2010

Top Books of 2009

I am a pretty avid reader, though for the past few years I have been gravitating more towards magazines and newspapers, opposed to books. Once I bought a Kindle back in April, I made it a personal goal in 2009 to read at least a book a month. I think the final tally was about 14, which isn't bad given the time constraints in my life. Following is a look at my Top Five.

5. The Lost City of Z: A Tale of Deadly Obsession in the Amazon

This was part travelogue, part history and from what I understand, it got sanctioned as a movie that will star Brad Pitt. It was a very enjoyable read all the way through.

4. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

I generally don't have the time for fiction anymore but at my brother's insistence, I bought this one and it did not disappoint (although its successor, the Girl Who Played with Fire was a bit of a letdown). An old fashioned page turner that you simply can't stop reading.

3. The Fourth Star: four Generals and the Epic Struggle for the Future of the United States Army
I am borderline obsessed with any book having to do with the military and I am particularly drawn to books about military leadership. You can learn a lot of lessons from the military that apply to modern business. This is a fascinating account of the four generals who led Iraq building up to the Surge.

2. Farm City

A witty account of a woman who works to create an organic farm out of an abandoned lot in downtown Oakland. Equal parts funny, entertaining and educational.

1. Born to Run. A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen

You had to have seen this coming, right? The truth is, this would have been my favorite book of the year even if I wasn't an ultrarunner. I have long been interested in eclectic subcultures and us ultrarunners certainly fit the bill. That was a fascinating story and the only book I read this year where I was dreading the ending -- only because I was enjoying it that much. I have been buying it as a holiday gift for both runners and non-runners alike.

Posted via email from Howard Solomon


Anonymous said...

I read your #1 choice. best book of year for me too except it was also the only book of year for me. made me want to run 50 miles per day. luckily i have a car so i just drive the 50.some days i even do a little

foodmomiac said...

My best book of 2009 was This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper. I promise you will love it (even though it's fiction).