As part of our Best Books of 2011 coverage, our editors weigh in on some of their personal favorites from the list.


If you thought Jane Austen could only appeal to female readers, scholar and literary critic William Deresiewicz asks you to think again. Deresiewicz was dismissive of Austen as a young man, but after a professor he admired assigned Emma in a grad school class, he realized that not only was Austen a pleasure to read, but he could learn a few things from her too, including humility, the value of true friendship and even how to love. His book is full of insights large and small, as each book he reads illuminates a passage in his own life. Watching Deresiewicz grow from a callow young man to a thoughtful adult, and finally to a loving husband, is a journey worth taking.

Don't miss our review of this title and our interview with Deresiewicz.

Our complete Best Books of 2011 list will be revealed in our December issue. What was your favorite book of 2011? Tell us, and you'll be entered to win 10 books in the genre of your choice.

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