James Lee Burke is the greatest mystery writer working today and Dave Robicheaux is hands down the most well-developed and uniquely conflicted character you’ll ever meet. The Glass Rainbow, which was released earlier in the year, was another stellar installment in the Burke canon.


The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, Rebecca Skloot's flawless biography, which was one of the most talked about books of this year (and deservedly so!), told the regenerative tale of a forgotten woman, who died young, had her cells unknowingly appropriated by science, and here is rightly "immortalized" by Skloot for being solely responsible for saving the lives of countless people.



Stieg Larsson, in creating Lisbeth Salander -- the psychologically damaged tattooed genius -- managed to introduce the single most compelling heroine in modern literature and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest was easily one of my top titles for 2010.


Yann Martel’s Beatrice and Virgil centered on the inexplicable yet extraordinary dialogue between a donkey and a monkey. This seemingly whimsical tale was, in truth, a profound parable on the Holocaust and confirmed that Martel is a master storyteller.


My pick for funniest book of the year was Justin Halpern’s Sh*t My Father Says, a hilarious tale of moving back in with his brusque, tell-it-like-it-is father -- a gutter-mouthed Confucius if you will! – that still makes me laugh just thinking about it.



Suzanne Collins’ Mockingjay – the final installment in her Hunger Games Trilogy --exceeded all its hype and ensured that these books attain the classic status that they so deserve.


Tom Franklin’s books have always been of the cult classic variety; the type of work you share in knowing conversations with like-minded readers. This year we selected Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter for our B&N Recommends Program and I couldn’t be more pleased with the pick.


I've been reading Bryson since 1995 and I regularly cite his books in my “best of” lists, so it’s no surprise that At Home – a prime, witty, and wonderful example of Bryson’s insatiable curiosity – made the 2010 selections.


NOOK owners: go to shop, and search for these titles by name to download them.

0 Kudos
by babzilla41 on ‎12-02-2010 09:40 AM



Best of luck to you in your new venture.  You've been great especially with First Look!



by Biological on ‎12-02-2010 09:40 AM

Welcome to NookBook Showcase, Jeremy.  I'm sorry to see you go, Paul.  I wanted to mention that I've had a few good laughs on some of your Free Friday posts and sorry to see you go.  I hope your new venture works out well for you.

by ZAY on ‎12-02-2010 09:42 AM

Best of luck to you Paul!!  Thank you so much for introducing us to so many wonderful new authors and for sharing your knowledge. 


Welcome Jeremy!


One of my favorite books this year, recommended by Paul of course, was Jennifer Donnelly’s Revolution.

by Sojaded on ‎12-02-2010 09:44 AM

Paul, wishing you all the best of luck!  You will be missed because you have made me crack up so much when people complain on your free friday post!


Jeremy welcome!!


To my fellow Nookies - does anyone know if Gin and Tonic (the daily blog on our nooks) is on a break or if it is done.  I have not gotten a new post in ages but all my other stuff updates fine.

by Witchy1 on ‎12-02-2010 09:51 AM

Alas, Grin & Tonic is gone!  And now Paul too - I will miss both!  Welcome Jeremy - look forward to your picks!

by on ‎12-02-2010 10:51 AM


You will be missed. Love your recommendations. I see there are a few to add to my TBR list. All the best on your new adventure.



Welcome. Looking forward to your nook picks for us.


by Moderator dhaupt on ‎12-02-2010 11:08 AM

Paul, you will never be able to be replaced and will leave a gaping hole here at B&N. Best of luck to you we will all miss you not just here at Nook but on First Look and all the other places you lurk around the site.   :-(


Welcome Jeremy you have big shoes to fill.


my pick for 2010 is The Passage



by DSaff on ‎12-02-2010 12:29 PM

Welcome, Jeremy! I say that with mixed feelings because we love Paul here! Paul, thank you for so many things, but most of all for your work on FL and here on the blog! Yours are huge shoes to fill (not meaning to scare Jeremy LOL).


I think my favorite Nook Book this year was "The Scent of Rain and Lightning." But, as you know, there are soooo many good books out there.


Donna  =)

by Moderator Melissa_W on ‎12-02-2010 12:44 PM

We'll miss you Paul! :smileysad: Welcome, Jeremy! :smileyhappy:

by mackandmilo on ‎12-02-2010 12:54 PM

Good Luck paul - with all your future endeavors!  Thanks for all the Free Nookbooks you have shared with us this year!


Welcome to the fray Jeremy!  :smileyhappy:

by nookgirl17 on ‎12-02-2010 02:03 PM

Good luck Paul on you new venture.  I have enjoyed your recommendations and Free Fridays nookbooks. My favorite book was the millennium trilogy by Steig Larsson.  The Girl with the Hornet's Nest was a good book that  wrapped up the series.


Welcome Jeremy! 

by on ‎12-02-2010 02:49 PM

Thanks everyone!

by Michael-V on ‎12-02-2010 05:16 PM

I still can't believe he's leaving....but good luck!

by MusicmanGG on ‎12-02-2010 06:33 PM

Good luck Paul on your new venture!  I also have enjoyed picks and always checked here first when coming to the B&N Site.


Welcome to NookBook Showcase, Jeremy.  I am looking forward to seeing your book recommendations.

by SuziRozi on ‎12-02-2010 07:51 PM

I've enjoyed reading your columns, Paul - very nice writing, informative, interesting, and useful. The best to you in your new venture!


I have read several books this year that will be among my favorites for a long time.


Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese hit the top of my list (although on some days, another book temporarilly takes that place.


Among the many others which fall into a crowded second place was Stieg Larsson's Millennium trilogy. What a surprisingly good read!!! I became so involved with the characters. I was so sad when the story was over (for now, at least).


Thanks again, Paul, for such a variety of good recommendations!!!