Help pack a million meals for struggling seniors on 9-11. Volunteer today




Caucasian couple looking at a laptop computer together


Virgo - AARP Horoscope

Look at what your future holds if your birthday is between August 23 & September 22


The tablet with free 24/7 customer support. Learn More

Most Popular


2010 Books: Overlooked and Overlauded

Don't miss these good reads in fiction and nonfiction

Overlooked and Overlauded


America by Heart: Reflections on Family, Faith, and the Flag by Sarah Palin. In her inimitably trailbreaking style, Alaska's half-term governor may have inaugurated a new literary genre: snide patriotism.
— Charlie Clark

Angelology by Danielle Trussoni. Most reviewers went easy on this novel about an epic battle between angels and mortals, to which I can say only: Why? One reason, I suspect, was the strength of the author's previous book, a memoir. But to be honest? This thriller was the silliest thing I read all year.
— Wendy Smith

Fall of Giants by Ken Follett (Book 1 of "The Century Trilogy"). Follett's latest blockbuster reminds me of the old joke about heaven versus hell: In heaven, the French are the cooks and the English are the police; in hell, vice versa. He combines a lover's approach to historical research with a workmanlike approach to sex scenes.
— Bethanne Patrick

The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman. The rave reviews for this debut novel about staffers at an English-language newspaper in Rome were bewildering. It is overwritten, and the individual stories never cohere as a whole.
— Evelyn Renold

Matterhorn: A Novel of the Vietnam War by Karl Marlantes. The undeclared "conflict" deserves a novel with Matterhorn's scope and Marlantes' understanding of dysfunctional chains of command. It also deserves a novel unburdened by his clunky, cliché-ridden sentences.
— Mark Athitakis

Percival's Planet by Michael Byers. The author's precise, evocative prose drew plaudits from most reviewers, as did the core of this historical fiction — the 1930 discovery of Pluto by Kansas farm boy Clyde Tombaugh. But Byers buries Tombaugh in an unwieldy and ultimately unbelievable cast of characters and subplots that exhausted my patience.
— Roberta Conlan

The Possessed: Adventures With Russian Books and the People Who Read Them by Elif Batuman. The author is a smart, funny critic with lots to say about literary obsession. Somebody always seems to be squirming under her bootheel, however: Her highly personal takes on Tolstoy, Pushkin and Dostoyevsky are routinely undercut by snarky swipes at nearly everyone with whom she interacts.
— Mark Athitakis

Room by Emma Donoghue. You can't help being drawn in by the novelist's 5-year-old narrator, cruelly imprisoned with his mother in the backyard shed of a psychopath. Once he escapes, however, this creepfest of a novel vainly seeks a place to go — and struggles for something to say.
— Mark Athitakis

by Paul Harding. When it's not being sporadically brilliant, this 2009 Pulitzer Prize-winner — filled with time shifts and interior monologues — is convoluted, overwritten and willfully obscure. It's easy to simultaneously marvel at Harding's talent and grok why he struggled so hard to get this novel published.
— Julia Klein

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts


Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.

AARP Bookstore

Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

Live Nation

Members save 25% or more when buying tickets in groups of four from Ticketmaster.

Cirque Du Soleil

Members save 15-30% on tickets to live Cirque du Soleil shows.

Member Benefit AARP Regal 2

Members pay $8 for Regal ePremiere tickets purchased online. Conditions apply.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! Members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.