Sure, we could have a best books list. But everybody else is doing that to death, so let's let our freak flag fly, shall we? So here are my nominees, in no particular order (links go to my original bitchy reviews):
1. What Happened, by Scott McClellan. Bush's former weenie press secretary tries to act like he didn't know Bush was evil when he originally took the job, and has now written a book to try and profit from the terrible mess he helped create. Mr. McClellan, you are a weenie, and your boring book filled with information we all already know deserves to be remaindered.
2. Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Why We Need a Green Revolution, by Thomas Friedman. I'll admit it. I haven't even read this one, I just hate Friedman on principle. I hate that he's still trying to profit on his last book with the "flat" bit (playing on his previous title "The World is Flat") and I hate that he's such a book whore that he's now riding the "green revolution" to profit. What a jackhole. And, Mr. Friedman? Thanks again for so adamantly supporting the Iraq War. That's working out really well.
3. Can You Ever Forgive Me? Memoirs of a Literary Forger, by Lee Israel. Israel tells her story of forging famous people's autographs and letters and selling them for profit. How she manages to make her story both boring and self-pitying, I'm not sure, but she sure did.
4. Nothing to Be Frightened Of, Julian Barnes. Yet another old man tells us about his atheism, how it developed, and how it relates to his fear of death. Um, why do I care again? Oh, right, because it's a New York Times Notable book, along with dozens of other boring choices.
5. The Story of Edgar Sawtelle, by David Wroblewski. Hamlet, retold from a dog's point of view (basically), over the course of about 200 more pages (562 pages total) than were necessary. Um, why do I care again? Oh yes, it's an Oprah book, and one of the most "buzzed about" titles of the year. I don't know who this Buzz is but I'm thinking he and I don't share the same taste in books.
6. Do Travel Writers Go to Hell?, by Thomas Kohnstamm. Like reading an account of a frat boy's life ("I drank a lot, women found me irresistible and screwed me, and now I'm relating all the details like the classy guy I am") with more international settings. And not terribly well-described international settings at that.
7. The Geography of Bliss, by Eric Weiner, and Against Happiness, by Eric Wilson. The only thing that made me happy about these books was returning them to the library.
So how's about it? What titles annoyed the hell out of you this year?