Finally, some good news: the annual meta-lists of best books, music, and movies have arrived! As always, I need to remind everyone that these are not my personal opinions – they are compilations of multiple lists published in newspapers, magazines and websites. I have not read all these books, listened to all this music or seen all these movies.
Here they are:
Some random observations:
Every year, the “best of the year” lists seem to come earlier and earlier, just like Christmas music in the stores. I’m guessing this has to do with the retailers’ desire to use these lists to inspire holiday gift givers to make purchases (of books and music) and get folks out to see the movies on the lists. I just hope that movies, books and albums released in late December get considered for next year’s lists.
Another thing that is changing (i.e., expanding) is the length of nonfiction book subtitles (the stuff after the colon). The publishing industry needs to take a chill pill on this – pretty soon, the entire first chapter is going to be on the cover of the book. Maybe the worst offender this year is: BOOM TOWN: The Fantastical Saga of Oklahoma City, Its Chaotic Founding, Its
Apocalyptic Weather, Its Purloined Basketball Team, and the Dream of Becoming
a World-Class Metropolis.
The Wikipedia genre descriptions for musical acts (which I include in the Best Music lists) make me laugh. Like one band that is described as both “punk” and “post-punk” – how is that logically possible? (And how is “post-punk” different from “post-punk revival”? Is post-punk already dead such that someone had to revive it? And if so, why are some bands still referred to as “post-punk”?) Also, the proliferation of “cores.” I assume that “hardcore” was the first one, but now there are “grindcore”, “slowcore” and “sadcore” (I’m sure I’m missing some). Not to mention “shoegaze.”