The Best Books We Read in 2011

As we did last year, we'll be running a series of posts featuring our staff members' selections of their favorite books read in 2011. Forgive our presumption, but we're booksellers: most of us can't limit ourselves to just one book.

First up, Pete, who selected books in four categories.


"Our May Book of the Month. It's a well-paced novel of the gold rush days, two messed up brothers, a fair amount of violence, and an undercurrent of dark humor. A fun read from start to finish."


"This is the riveting story of Jim Jones and the People's Temple. Scheeres (Jesus Land) took advantage of newly released documents and weaves well the tale of an idealist preacher, the accumulation of his followers, his devolution through drugs into paranoia, and how he leads nearly a thousand souls to mass suicide. I started this book wondering just how any parent could poison their own child, and left with that hole in my heart filled with caution instead of curiosity."


"This is a collection of healthy and vegetarian recipes that are perfect for weekday meals. Nothing too complicated, but everything more surprisingly yummy than you think it'll be. For those who want to cook quickly and healthily, this is a gem of a cookbook by a local author."


"It's hard to say what I (and my 5YO twins) love about this one. It's funny and quirky, and I like the drawings. I know I sound like a five-year-old, but, well, I know you are but what am I?"

[This is a book several Green Applers really, really enjoy.]