best books

The Best Books of 2018

Lee Polevoi

Too bad more biographies aren’t like this one, a kaleidoscopic and irreverent look at the life of a now-deceased member of the 20th century British family, a princess determined to go her own way. Craig Brown dispenses with traditional linear narrative (birth, youth, middle age, old age, and death), preferring to draw us in with a series of impressions, anecdotes and speculations about Her Royal Highness (99 in all) that grow out of documented fact and salacious rumors.

Best Books of 2014

Lee Polevoi

One of the chief pleasures of On Such a Full Sea is the anxious, reflective, self-questioning and cautiously prideful “chorus of We” that tells the story of Fan, a 16-year-old fish-tank diver in a highly stratified, post-apocalyptic America. The collective voice emanates from B-Mor, “once known as Baltimore,” whose inhabitants are charged with raising fish and vegetables to feed the elite Charter villages, located across a vast, lawless territory called the “open counties.”

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