Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Best Books of 2011

I have finally done it - In 2011 I read more non-fiction than fiction. I have been on the verge for a long time. The more kids I have the less fiction I read. Otherwise, I ignore my kids and my home for three days to finish it and when it's all over I wonder if it was worth it. Non-fiction on the other hand, I can pick up and put down a little easier. I can use more self-control and still feel like I am broadening my mind (which is sadly quite unused). So here are my top five, in no particular order.

The Great Bridge by David McCullough: The fascinating story about the building of the Brooklyn Bridge. I love how McCullough intertwines the lives of the different historical figures in such a way that gives the story a personal human feel while you are still blown away by the technical side of how it was all accomplished.

Tiger: A Story of Vengeance and Survival: This is a story about a man-eating tiger in Russia. Yea, that intro didn't interest me much either, but I watched Greg get sucked into this book and had to find out why. It is such an eye opening look at the animal world, the effects of the Communism and its collapse on rural Russia, and the fear of being hunted.

A Tree Grows In Brooklyn: I remember reading this in High School and being so struck buy the impact books had on the main character. I loved the new insights I gained this time as an adult. I understood a lot more about her mother and their relationship. A classic worth rereading.

The Help: This one has been given enough airtime - I'm sure you have all read it and/or seen the movie. I loved the rich characters, the humor, and the details that made it such an easy book to fall into.

Infidel: The autobiography of Ayaan Hirsi Ali was amazing. I am having a hard time putting into words what I enjoyed about this book. I learned so much about parts of the world I have never been, about Islam, about how much have to be grateful for, about the many injustices in the world, and how you can overcome anything.