1. But are the books good?

  2. Two of the novels, the Bolano and the Peterson, were on my personal recommendation list this year, and I was interested in the Thomas and Johnson books, although I haven’t read either yet. Junot Diaz should certainly have been included.

    Is _Savage Detectives_ really a safe choice? It’s a long, somewhat meandering novel filled with debauchery and obscure literary references, published in translation years after being written by a dead, previously little known author from outside the US. It certainly sparked a lot of buzz in the media, and while it may not have been a complete stretch to include it, the selection was well-earned.

  3. Would be curious to hear your thoughts on why these are “safe.” As a group, they don’t seem all that safe to me.

    And, I seem to recall a similar discussion last year, but isn’t the stated goal of a list like this to pick the “Best” books without concern as to how “safe” they are?

  4. Perhaps by “safe” Ed means they have decided to safely choose the top ten books of the year to be included in their list of the top ten books of the year.

  5. Okay, c’mon—are you ever satisfied with anything the NYTBR does? Per Petterson’s on there. That’s worth “props.”

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