The Root Picks the 15 Best Books of 2012

Henry Louis Gates Jr. and the team chose page-turners by Zadie Smith, David Maraniss, Toni Morrison and others.

Authors Zadie Smith (Dominique Nabokov); David Maraniss (; Toni Morrison (Francois Durand/Getty Images)

(The Root) -- Given the sheer number of published works (e-books included) that come out each year, it's always a challenge to pick the best titles. In 2012 there were lots of contenders, such as Victor LaValle's quirky thriller The Devil in Silver and illuminating music books, including Gil Scott-Heron's The Last Holiday.

The Root staff managed to settle on this diverse list, which includes several revealing biographies and eloquent examples of literary fiction. Let us know which ones you've read, as well as the titles that are among your best books of 2012, in the comments section below.

1. The Grey Album: On the Blackness of Blackness, by Kevin Young

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