Phil’s Top Picks 2013

philjason loves booksTop Picks 2013

The following titles, which I prefer to list without ranking them, are my top picks among those published in 2012-2013 that I reviewed during 2013. It would be easy to find room for another 5-6 fiction titles, but I’m staying with the top ten selected.

In past years, the nonfiction list was limited to a “top 8” because I reviewed far fewer nonfiction titles than fiction. That circumstance has changed somewhat and this year’s list for nonfiction is now also a “top 10.”

The first two lists reflect my favorites among the trade publications that I reviewed. Separately, I’ve listed 3 self-published titles that seem to me especially worthy of notice plus two dazzling  portfolios – coffee table gems by amazingly talented visual artists.


FICTION [trade]

Michael Connelly, The Black Box

Lisa Black, Blunt Impact

Nancy Richler, The Imposter Bride

James W. Hall, Going Dark

Robert N. Macomber, Honors Rendered

John Dufresne, No Regrets, Coyote

Randy Wayne White, Deceived

Naomi Ragen, The Sisters Weiss

Kinley Roby, The Birds of Winter

Nathan Englander, What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank


Lillian Faderman, My Mother’s Wars

Ilan Stavans, Singer’s Typewriter and Mine

Helene Aylon, Whatever Is Contained Must Be Released

J. Michael Lennon, Norman Mailer: A Double Life

Seth Lipsky, The Rise of Abraham Cahan

Jeremy Dauber, The Worlds of Sholem Aleichem: The Remarkable Life and Afterlife of the Man Who Created Tevya

Rod Dreher, The Little Way of Ruthie Leming

Bill DeYoung, Skyway: The True Story of Tampa Bay’s Signature Bridge and the Man Who Brought It Down

Christopher Benfey, Red Brick, Black Mountain, White Clay: Reflections on Art, Family, & Survival

Steven T. Katz and Alan Rosen, eds., Elie Wiesel: Jewish, Literary, and Moral Perspectivies.


Dan Chabot, Godspeed: A Love Story

Nina Harkness, A Sahib’s Daughter

Gary Schmeltz, Journey to the Edge of Eden

 SPECIAL MENTION [art books]

Alan S. Maltz, photographer, with narrative by Karen T. Bartlett, Journey Through Paradise: Naples, Marco Island, and The Everglades.

Paul Arsenault, Paul Arsenault: My Journey as a Painter

1 Comment

Filed under Authors and Books

One response to “Phil’s Top Picks 2013

  1. Ruth Barber

    Good job. as usual, Phil …

    I am buying The Sisters Weiss for myself & my d’t’r. …

    Warm regards,

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