Books of the Decade

I see that the Guardian has published its list of the 50 “books of the decade” with comments from a variety of authors and critics. It’s worth reading their comments for insight.

Here’s just the list – bolded titles are the ones that I’ve read. Only 15 out of the fifty, not a particularly good score, I’m afraid. However, nothing would ever persuade me to read anything written by Dan Brown – “Bestselling” does not guarantee quality; it’s a logical fallacy. Still, there are definitely some titles here that I would like to add to my reading list; Wolf Hall, for example.


White Teeth, by Zadie Smith (Penguin)
No Logo, by Naomi Klein (Fourth Estate)
The Tipping Point, by Malcolm Gladwell (Little, Brown)
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, by Dave Eggers (Picador)
The Amber Spyglass, by Philip Pullman (Scholastic)
How to Be a Domestic Goddess: Baking and the Art of Comfort Cooking, by Nigella Lawson (Chatto & Windus)
Experience, by Martin Amis (Vintage)


The Corrections, by Jonathan Franzen (Harper Perennial)
Atonement, by Ian McEwan (Jonathan Cape)
Austerlitz, by WG Sebald (Penguin)
A Life’s Work: On Becoming a Mother, by Rachel Cusk (Fourth Estate)


Nickel and Dimed: Undercover in Low-Wage USA, by Barbara Ehrenreich (Granta)
London Orbital: A Year Walking Around the M25, by Iain Sinclair (Penguin)
Fingersmith, by Sarah Waters (Virago)
Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood and the Story of a Return, by Marjane Satrapi (Jonathan Cape)


The Da Vinci Code, by Dan Brown (Corgi)
Landing Light, by Don Paterson (Faber)
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, by Mark Haddon (Vintage)
The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini (Bloomsbury)
Eats, Shoots & Leaves, by Lynne Truss (Profile)


The 9/11 Commission Report: Final Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States (WW Norton)
Small Island, by Andrea Levy (Headline)
The Line of Beauty, by Alan Hollinghurst (Picador)
Cloud Atlas, by David Mitchell (Sceptre)
Being Jordan, by Katie Price (John Blake Publishing)
Earth: An Intimate History, by Richard Fortey (Vintage)


Freakonomics, by Steven D Levitt & Stephen J Dubner (Penguin)
Untold Stories, by Alan Bennett (Faber)
The Year of Magical Thinking, by Joan Didion (HarperCollins)
Postwar, by Tony Judt (Pimlico)
Saturday, by Ian McEwan (Vintage)


The God Delusion, by Richard Dawkins (Black Swan)
The Road, by Cormac McCarthy (Picador)
The Looming Tower, by Lawrence Wright (Penguin)
The Weather Makers, by Tim Flannery (Penguin)
The Revenge of Gaia, by James Lovelock (Penguin)


Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, by JK Rowling (Bloomsbury)
The Suspicions of Mr Whicher, by Kate Summerscale (Bloomsbury)
The Blair Years: Extracts from the Alastair Campbell Diaries (Arrow)
Half of a Yellow Sun, by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Harper Perennial)
The Reluctant Fundamentalist, by Mohsin Hamid (Penguin)


Change We Can Believe In, The Audacity of Hope and Dreams from My Father, by Barack Obama (Canongate)
The Rest Is Noise: Listening to the Twentieth Century, by Alex Ross (Harper Perennial)
Netherland, by Joseph O’Neill (Harper Perennial)
The Forever War, by Dexter Filkins (Vintage)
Home, by Marilynne Robinson (Virago)
The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science, by Richard Holmes (Harper Press)


Wolf Hall, by Hilary Mantel (Fourth Estate)
2666, by Roberto Bolaño (Picador)
Brooklyn, by Colm Tóibín (Viking)

About Geoff Coupe

I'm a British citizen, although I have lived and worked in the Netherlands since 1983. I came here on a three year assignment, but fell in love with the country, and one Dutchman in particular, and so have stayed here ever since. On the 13th December 2006 I also became a Dutch citizen.
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