10 Best Books of 2015
Our annual roundup of the best books of the year with some AMAZING illustrations. See hundreds more here, along with our reviews of each of these books here: http://wapo.st/1O5Sazh
- •Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi CoatesBetween the World and Me” is a riveting meditation on the state of race in America that has arrived at a tumultuous moment in America’s history of racial strife.
- •Black Flags: The Rise of ISIS by Joby WarrickIn “Black Flags,” Joby Warrick, a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter at The Washington Post, explains the importance of this gangster and analyzes his continuing influence on the Islamic State long after his death in 2006.
- •The Book of Aron by Jim ShepardDrawing on his imagination and dozens of historical sources, Shepard brings a Warsaw orphanage to life in this remarkable novel about a poor Polish boy and his friendship with the caretaker of the orphans, the pediatrician Janusz Korczak.
- •Destiny and Power: The American Odyssey of George Herbert Walker Bush by Jon MeachamJon Meacham’s new biography of George H.W. Bush accomplishes a neat trick. It completes the historical and popular rehabilitation of its subject, though it does by affirming, not upending, common perceptions of America’s 41st president.
- •Fates and Furies by Lauren GroffSpanning decades, oceans and the whole economic scale from indigence to opulence, “Fates and Furies,” which is a finalist for the National Book Award in fiction, holds within its grasp the story of one extraordinary marriage.
- •Future Crimes: Everything Is Connected, Everyone Is Vulnerable, and What We Can Do About It by Marc GoodmanWelcome to the brave new world of criminal technology, where robbers have been replaced by hackers and victims include all of us on the Web. Goodman, a former beat cop who founded the Future Crimes Institute, wrote his book to shed light on the latest in criminal and terrorist tradecraft and to kick off a discussion.
- •A Little Life by Hanya YanagiharaHanya Yanagihara’s novel, which is a finalist for the National Book Award in fiction, illuminates human suffering pushed to its limits, drawn in extraordinary, eloquent detail. Through her decade-by-decade examination of these people’s lives, Yanagihara draws a deeply realized character study that inspires as much as devastates.
- •Negroland: A memoir by Margo Jefferson“Negroland is my name for a small region of Negro America where residents were sheltered,” she writes. In Negroland, residents were mindful that being perceived as too successful by whites risked provoking their wrath. So they walked through life proudly but with care, treading cautiously so as never to offend. “Negroland” is not about raw racism or caricatured villains. It is about subtleties and nuances, presumptions and slights that chip away at one’s humanity and take a mental toll.
- •Purity by Jonathan FranzenAs he did in “The Corrections” (2001) and “Freedom” (2010), Franzen once again begins with a family, and his ravenous intellect strides the globe, drawing us through a collection of cleverly connected plots infused with major issues of our era.
- •Welcome to Braggsville by T. Geronimo JohnsonThis shockingly funny story pricks every nerve of the American body politic. Johnson is a master at stripping away our persistent myths and exposing the subterfuge and displacement necessary to keep pretending that a culture built on kidnapping, rape and torture was the apotheosis of gentility and honor. But “Welcome to Braggsville” is not just a broadside against the South; it’s equally irritated with liberalism’s self-righteousness.