Wednesday, December 10, 2003

Holiday Picks!

As the holiday season is now lurching towards us inexorably like some drunken store Santa searching for a bathroom, I wanted to take this opportunity to present you with BookLinker's Top Ten Holiday Book Picks.

I hope that this makes your holiday shopping burden a trifle easier and please remember that if you click through to Amazon on this site and buy your books, I will receive a very small stipend...regretably very, very small....(sigh). In case anyone thinks I plan to retire to Monte Carlo on this - please be assured that the $1.67 in funds I expect to receive will be spent entirely frivously on chocolate...

On to BookLinkers Top Ten Holiday Books!

10). The Complete Far Side by Gary Larson - What can I say that anyone who has read even a single Far Side cartoon doesn't already know? Pricelessly off-kilter and fun!

9). The Dante Club by Matthew Pearl - Engrossing, literate, involving historical thriller! Damn fine!

8). The Devil in the White City : Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America by Erik Larson - Desperately need to post the review for this one so in two words: just excellent!

7). Jarhead : A Marine's Chronicle of the Gulf War and Other Battles by Anthony Swofford - Another pending reviews: Jarring, uncomfortable, profane and starkly unsettling but one of the best works in many a year...

6). Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game by Michael Lewis - Yet another pending review (Damn, I need to post more often don't I?). Perfect for the baseball junkie on your gift list, well-written and throughly enjoyable.

5). By the Sword: A History of Gladiators, Musketeers, Samurai, Swashbucklers, and OlympicChampions by Richard A. Cohen - Swashbuckling through the ages, an unbeatable history book that's great fun to boot!

4). Charlie Wilson's War: The Extraordinary Story of the Largest Covert Operation in History by George Crile - A must for the spy thriller and history junkie, it tells a story that you just plain won't believe until you read it...

3). The Pirate Hunter: The True Story of Captain Kidd by Richard Zacks - Pirates. Need I say more?

2). Seabiscuit: An American Legend by Laura Hillenbrand - The best sportsbook of the year...(and another outstanding pending review. Boy do I have a lot to answer for...)

and the Number One Pick for 2003 is....

1). Life of Pi by Yann Martel - Excellent, engrossing, thoughtful and provocative! A real winner!

As an added addition to my Top Ten Books, here is my 7 Worst, Most Overratted, Avoid-at-all-Costs books for 2003....Dan't even think about buying these books...yes, I'm talking to you. Don't do it...well, okay maybe for your mother-in-law...

7). A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson - I love Bill Bryson but this one is unfortunately lengthy, somewhat dull and not nearly as enjoyable as previous works...not bad but probably not a great holiday gift.

6). Prey by Michael Crichton - Why even bother?

5). Stupid White Men ...and Other Sorry Excuses for the State of the Nation! by Michael Moore - Nice to see that America still has professional gadflies and people challenging the system but am I the only one who wishes that he would just go away for awhile?

4). Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them: A Fair and Balanced Look at the Right by Al Franken - I have nothing against Al Franken. He is funny...sometimes... but am I alone is just finding this more of the same?

3). Who's Looking Out for You? by Bill O'Reilly - If these guys spent half as much energy thinking as they do yelling at each other, the world would be a much nicer place...quieter too...

2). The South Beach Diet: The Delicious, Doctor-Designed, Foolproof Plan for Fast and Healthy Weight Loss by Arthur Agatston - In all honesty: didn't read it. Eat less. Exercise more. Balanced diet. There, you're done! Save your money.

1). The Teeth of the Tiger by Tom Clancy - Bad. Really bad. Well, actually unfortunately worse then really bad. Extremely lame effort by the king of the techno-thrillers. Lengthy. Boring. It is also obviously a larger work deliberately truncated into two books. We can probably expect the next one next year. On the positive side it weighs less then some of his recent work...

Enjoy your holiday shopping!

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