The Books of 2015

On December 29th, I wrote about my goal of reading 52 books in a year and explained how I use a deck of cards (Bicycle is my preferred brand) as bookmarks each year. If I finish the deck, then I’ve read 52. I am often (okay, sometimes) asked about the books I read, so I thought I would share a bit about my 2015 reading list.

To paraphrase Frank Sinatra, 2015 was “a very good year.” I read 93 books. I opened the year with Stanley Weintraub’s “Silent Night” and closed it with “Their Eyes Were Watching God” by Zora Neale Hurston. In between those two, there was a wide variety. I got on a Michael Connelly kick and read about a dozen of his books, then I moved on to “To Kill A Mockingbird” by Harper Lee (I still haven’t read her new one), a handful of Louis L’Amour westerns, “The Scarlet Letter” by Nathaniel Hawthorne, “Green Eggs and Ham” by Dr. Suess and “Common Sense” by Thomas Paine.

Many of the books I choose to read are for an anthology I’m working on (and hope to publish in 2016), many were recommended by friends and some were old favorites that simply demand to be re-read, including: “The Maltese Falcon” by Dashiell Hammett, “The House at Pooh Corner” by A. A. Milne, “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” by Mark Twain and “The Old Man and the Sea” by Ernest Hemingway.

I read my first Stephen King novel (“The Gunslinger,” the first of The Dark Tower series) and a couple of collections of comics — “There’s Treasure Everywhere” (featuring Calvin & Hobbes) by Bill Watterson and “Frazz 3.14” by Jef Mallett.

All in all, it was an excellent year for work-related books, new authors and old favorites. It is with some regret that I completely forgot to read John Steinbeck’s “Travels With Charley,” possibly my all-time favorite book and the first year in 20-plus years that I didn’t read it.

As for 2016, I’m off to a fun start with “The Stepford Wives” by Ira Levin and a nightstand stacked with books that I can’t wait to get to. If you’d like to share some great books that you’ve read, I’d love to hear from you!