Booklist 2013

I’ve been going over my reading list for the past year, and it’s a doozy. Altogether I plowed through 75 books, and while that’s two fewer than last year, it’s still a hell of a year. Here’s the whole list, followed by a sort of break-down:

Stan Allyn, The Day the Sun Didn’t Rise
Janet Allured and Judith F. Gentry, Louisiana Women: Their Lives and Times
Barry Jean Ancelet, Cajun and Creole Folktales
Sherwood Anderson, Winesburg, Ohio
Kenneth Aguillard Atchity, Cajun Household Wisdom: You Know You Still Alive, If It’s Costin’ You Money!
Jane Austen, Persuasion
Arthur W. Bergeron, Jr, Guide to Louisiana Confederate Military Units 1861-1865
Arthur W. Bergeron, Jr, The Civil War in Louisiana: Part B: The Home Front
Ben Boulden, Hidden History of Fort Smith, Arkansas
Christopher Bowen, We Were Giants
G. A. Bradshaw, Elephants on the Edge: What Animals Teach Us about Humanity
Carl A. Brasseaux and Philip Gould, Acadiana: Louisiana’s Historic Cajun Country
Howard C. Brooks, Gold and Silver in Oregon
Jeffrey Brown, Clumsy
Matthew Burnside, Infinity’s Jukebox
Sandra Cisneros, The House on Mango Street
Todd Cobb, Ghosts of Portland, Oregon
Suzanne Collins, Catching Fire
Suzanne Collins, Mockingjay
Susan Cooper, Over Sea, Under Stone
Jerry Craven, The Big Thicket
R. Crumb, The Book of Genesis
Jules O. Daigle, Dictionary of the Cajun Language
HH the 14th Dalai Lama, Lighting the Way
Edwidge Danticat and Robert Atwan (eds), Best American Essays 2011
Justin Lawrence Daugherty, Whatever Don’t Drown Will Always Rise
Ann Downer-Hazell, Elephant Talk: The Surprising Science of Elephant Communication
Monica Drake, The Stud Book
Rachel Dresbeck, Oregon Disasters: True Stories of Tragedy and Survival
Maggie Dunn and Ann Morris, The Composite Novel: The Short Story Cycle in Transition
William Faulkner, Go Down, Moses
Tom Franklin, Poachers
Tom Franklin, Smonk
Gabriel García Marquez, Love in the Time of Cholera
Webb Garrison, Civil War Curiosities: Strange Stories, Oddities, Events, and Coincidences
Nicole J. Georges, Calling Dr. Laura
Natalie Giarratano, Leaving Clean
Louise Y. Gossett, Violence in Recent Southern Fiction
Dena Rash Guzman, Life Cycle
Jeffrey Hecker (ed/ill), Instructions for the Orgy
John Alfred Heitmann, The Modernization of the Louisiana Sugar Industry, 1830-1910
J. Gerald Kennedy (ed), Modern American Short Story Sequences: Composite Fictions and Fictive Communities
Stephen King, The Shining
Rolf Lundén, The United Stories of America
Roger Manley, Mark Moran, and Mark Sceurman, Weird Louisiana: Your Travel Guide to Louisiana’s Local Legends and Best Kept Secrets
Susan Garland Mann, The Short Story Cycle: A Genre Companion and Reference Guide
Cormac McCarthy, No Country For Old Men
Colin Meloy and Carson Ellis, Wildwood
Donald Menard, The Untold Story of Hurricane Audrey
Debra Monroe, The Source of Trouble
Alan Moore, The Watchmen
Barry Moser (ed/ill), Cowboy Stories
Alice Munro, Lives of Girls and Women
James Nagel, The Contemporary American Short Story Cycle: The Ethnic Resonance Of Genre
Chuck Palahniuk, Fugitives and Refugees: A Walk in Portland, Oregon
Cathy C. Post, Hurricane Audrey: The Deadly Storm of 1957
Morris Raphael and George Rodrigue, The Loup-Garou of Côte Gelée
Ethel Rohan, Hard to Say
Bill Roorbach, Writing Life Stories
Floyd Hiatt Ross, Shinto, the Way of Japan
Nola Mae Ross, The Devastation of Hurricane Rita: A Pictorial Log of Hurricane Rita’s Path of Destruction Through Cameron and Calcasieu Parishes
Nola Mae Wittler Ross, Hurricane Audrey
Nola Mae Wittler Ross, Louisiana’s Acadian Homes and Their History
Traylor Russell and Robert T. Russell, Some Die Twice
Lyle Saxon, Edward Dreyer, and Robert Tallant, Gumbo Ya-Ya: A Collection of Louisiana Folk Tales
David Small, Stitches
Alexis M. Smith, Glaciers
William L. Sullivan, Oregon’s Greatest Natural Disasters
Joe Gray Taylor, Louisiana, a History
Ron Thibodeaux, Hell or High Water: How Cajun Fortitude Withstood Hurricanes Rita and Ike
Philip Varney, Ghost Towns of the Pacific Northwest
Kurt Vonnegut, Cat’s Cradle
Chris Ware, Building Stories
Bill Watterson, The Authoritative Calvin And Hobbes
Ryan Werner, Murmuration
John Sibley Williams, Controlled Hallucinations

Dizzy yet? Of these 75 books, 31 were things I read for research or inspiration while working on books — cleaning up my novel Hagridden (forthcoming from Columbus Press!) during my research trip to Louisiana, working on my apocalyptic story cycle on a writing retreat, or pounding out a rough (and incomplete) draft of a new novel during NaNoWriMo.

Twenty-five of these books were fiction, including novels (13), story collections (3), story cycles (4), and chapbooks (5). Another five were poetry collections, and five more were graphic novels.

An interesting note I’ve never counted before: 16 of these books were books I read or reread for classes I was teaching, including a literature course on the story cycle and a creative writing course, and a few novels I tutored a high school guy in and decided to reread for fun. In fact, between my classes and my research, I reread 20 books this year.

And that doesn’t count the fact that I’ve read and reread my own chapbook, Box Cutters, at least a dozen times this year between edits and proofs and just enjoying seeing the thing in print at all. And I’ve reread my novel Hagridden twice (and will be rereading it again in edits and again in proofs over the coming year). And I’ve reread portions of my story cycle I worked on during retreat. And I reread (I can’t count how many times) the 11 stories I published this year as well as the one I just finished. (Yep — ending the year writing, gang!)

And, of course, there are the roughly two dozen books I’ve picked up in purchase, gifts, or exchange over the holiday season and hope to read in the next month or so, before my school load starts piling up again.

Speaking of which: I’ve also read hundred and hundreds of pages of student writing, almost all of it essays and most of it exhilarating, some of it downright breathtaking.

Published by Samuel Snoek-Brown

I write fiction and teach college writing and literature. I'm the author of the story collection There Is No Other Way to Worship Them, the novel Hagridden, and the flash fiction chapbooks Box Cutters and Where There Is Ruin.

2 thoughts on “Booklist 2013

  1. Interesting to see what you’ve read this year. Figured many were for your research as I read through the list. Should have known you would be quite the reader as I tried to get you to hurry up and get dressed for school as I pried the cereal box out of your hand because you would read anything in print if it was nearby, lol!

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