Brian Doyle’s Favorite Books of 2009

It’s that time of year when Best Books of the Year lists abound! Today, Paper Fort steps into the fray, with the first in our series on Oregon’s writers and readers favorite books of 2009. This includes, but is not limited to, books published in 2009, as our first author’s list illustrates!

Here’s what Brian Doyle had to say about his favorites this year:

Patrick O’Brian’s sea novels. Discovered that a multi-volume linked narrative like that is called a roman a fleuve, which sounds like something you can get arrested for and find your half naked mortified photo in the paper, and then have to get the tattoos removed with an elephant gun.

Alan Bennett‘s The Uncommon Reader. Gawd, to read an absolute master ofthe writing craft, to read a book without an ounce of fat, gawd. As a writer, I hate Alan Bennett with a deep and abiding hate.

Helen Garner‘s The Spare Room. Best novel I have read in years. Lean, clean, moving, note-perfect. Wow. Everyone who ever said airily in recent years, o, Tim Winton is the greatest Australian novelist, or David Malouf is the greatest Australian novelist, hit your forehead with a ruler once. Airy statements like that sound cool, as I well know, having said them, but they might not be so true. It’s a puzzle.

Also: Louis Becke, and John Carlin’s Playing the Enemy.

If you can’t get a hold of Brian Doyle in 2010, we recommend looking here.

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