1. Arvind Panagariya, India: The Emerging Giant. Why didn't this book get more attention? It's by far the best treatment of the economics of contemporary India.
2. Dancing in the Dark: A Cultural History of the Great Depression, by Morris Dickstein. I put it down. I care about the topic but so much of the content is going through the motions rather than framing the argument around the author's original insights.
3. To Serve God and Wal-Mart: The Making of Christian Free Enterprise, by Bethany Moreton. It sounds like one of those whiny books on Wal-Mart. But I found it insightful throughout and also well-written; the main point is that Wal-Mart can be understood as driven by a Christian service ethos. Parts of it serve as a good economic history of the South and of chain stores and big box stores.
5. Nicholson Baker, The Anthologist. Sometimes Baker hits the spot, but this one didn't hold my interest. Poets might like it.