Top 5 Books of 2011 | Pete Timmermann

book dfwTo anyone who knows me, this list will probably not be terribly surprising, I’m afraid.

 

Sorry to wantonly mix fiction and nonfiction for this list. Here we have two nonfiction books by filmmakers I admire (numbers 2 and 4), a fiction book by a filmmaker I like sometimes (number 5), and new novels from two of my all-time favorite fiction writers (numbers 1 and 3). To anyone who knows me, this list will probably not be terribly surprising, I’m afraid.

A couple of quick notes: In this area in my 2010 Best Books list, I mentioned I was partway through Adam Levin’s mammoth novel The Instructions at the time of writing; had that book been a 2011 release, or had I actually finished it last year, it would have landed around the number 2 slot on either list. It’s quite a feat. And here you should perhaps be warned that It Chooses You (the for real number 2 on this year’s list) is something of a companion book to Miranda July’s new feature film The Future, which was released this summer. It serves the book well to have seen the movie before reading it. That said, you can read the whole thing in about two hours. I like it perhaps more than I like the movie, and I like the movie a lot.

Anyway:

1. David Foster Wallace | The Pale King (Little, Brown)

2. Miranda July | It Chooses You (McSweeney’s)

3. Haruki Murakami | 1Q84 (Knopf)

4. Errol Morris | Believing Is Seeing: Observations of the Mysteries of Photography (Penguin Press)

5. John Sayles | A Moment in the Sun (McSweeney’s)

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