Six books by Columbia University School of the Arts Writing Program faculty and alumni were selected for the New York Times 100 Notable Books of 2010 list. The list was published online on November 24, and will be published in the print edition of the New York Times Book Review on December 5.
Fiction & Poetry
THE ASK. By Sam Lipsyte (Faculty). (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $25.) A deeply cynical academic fund-raiser fighting for his job is the protagonist of this darkly humorous satire, a witty paean to white-collar loserdom.
HOW TO READ THE AIR. By Dinaw Mengestu ('05SOA). (Riverhead, $25.95.) Mengestu’s own origins inform this tale of an Ethiopian-American tracing the uncertain road once taken by his parents.
ILUSTRADO. By Miguel Syjuco ('04SOA). (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $26.) A murder mystery punctuated with serious philosophical musings, this novel traces 150 years of Filipino history, posing questions about identity and art, exile and duty.
SUPER SAD TRUE LOVE STORY. By Gary Shteyngart (Faculty). (Random House, $26.) Exhilarating prose illuminates the horrors of a future America in this satire.
KOESTLER: The Literary and Political Odyssey of a Twentieth-Century Skeptic. By Michael Scammell (Faculty). (Random House, $35.) Scammell wants to put the complex intelligence of Koestler (“Darkness at Noon”) back on display and to explain his shifting preoccupations.
THE MIND’S EYE. By Oliver Sacks (Columbia Artist). (Knopf, $26.95.) In these graceful essays, the neurologist explores how his patients compensate for the abilities they have lost, and confronts his own ocular cancer.