1. The Casual Vacancy, J.K. Rowling. The sudden death of a parish councilman reveals bitter social divisions in an idyllic English town; a novel for adults by the creator of Harry Potter.
2. NYPD Red, James Patterson and Marshall Karp. Detective Zach Jordan and his beautiful partner (and ex-girlfriend) must stop a deranged killer who has targeted a glittering New York film festival.
3. Gone Girl, Gillian Flynn. A woman disappears on her fifth anniversary; is her husband a killer?
4. Winter of the World, Ken Follett. In Book 2 of the Century trilogy, members of five interrelated families from five countries, some of them children of characters in the previous book, Fall of Giants, grapple with the tumultuous historical events of the years 1939-49.
5. Mad River, John Sandford. Virgil Flowers joins the hunt for a teenage Bonnie and Clyde.
1. Killing Kennedy, Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard. The host of The O’Reilly Factor recounts the events surrounding the assassination of John F. Kennedy.
2. No Easy Day, Mark Owen with Kevin Maurer. An account by a former member of the Navy SEALs of the mission that killed bin Laden.
3. Who I Am, Pete Townshend. The rocker’s memoir.
4. America Again, Stephen Colbert, Richard Dahm, Paul Dinello, Barry Julien, Tom Purcell et al. The mock pundit of Comedy Central’s Colbert Report tells how to bring America back from the brink.
5. Killing Lincoln, Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard. The host of The O’Reilly Factor recounts the events surrounding the assassination of Abraham Lincoln.
Advice, how-to, miscellaneous
1. Wheat Belly, William Davis. Examination of wheat in diets and argument for its elimination.
2. Guinness World Records 2013. Tallest, fastest, youngest, most.
3. God Loves You, David Jeremiah. Not to fully understand God’s love can lead to missed opportunities to experience his love.
4. True Food, Andrew Weil and Sam Fox with Michael Stebner. Recipes created to be seasonal, inviting and easy to make.
5. Daring Greatly, Brene Brown. How the courage to be vulnerable transforms the way we live, love, parent and lead.
1. Heaven Is for Real, Todd Burpo with Lynn Vincent. A father recounts his 3-year-old son’s encounter with Jesus and the angels during an emergency appendectomy.
2. In the Garden of Beasts, Erik Larson. This portrait of Berlin during the rise of the Nazis centers on the experiences of William E. Dodd, who became the U.S. ambassador to Germany in 1933, and his daughter, Martha.
3. Half the Sky, Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn. Women’s equality as the “paramount moral challenge” of our era.
4. The Swerve, Stephen Greenblatt. A book hunter rediscovered Lucretius’ On the Nature of Things and kept it from vanishing.
5. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, Rebecca Skloot. The story of an African-American woman whose cancerous cells were extensively cultured without her permission in 1951.
1. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Stephen Chbosky. What it’s like to grow up, from the perspective of a high school boy. (Ages 14 and older.)
2. The Book Thief, Markus Zusak. A girl saves books from Nazi burning. (Ages 14 and older.)
3. Divergent, Veronica Roth. A girl must prove her mettle in a faction-ridden dystopia. (Ages 14 and older.)
4. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, Sherman Alexie. Illustrated by Ellen Forney. A boy leaves his reservation for an all-white school. (Ages 12 and older.)
5. Out of My Mind, Sharon M. Draper. A brilliant girl with cerebral palsy longs for a way to speak. (Ages 10 to 13.)
— New York Times