03/18/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

The New York Times' 10 Best Books of 2009

After so many years, and so many lists, you might think the task of choosing the 10 Best Books would get easier. If only. The sublime story collections alone created agonies of indecision. So did the superb literary biographies we read -- and deeply admired. But in the end the decisions had to be made.

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