- The Complete Tales and Poems of Edgar Allen Poe by Edgar Allen Poe. Specifically The Fall of the House of Usher and Annabelle Lee, but this is a book list so I’m including the entire book. Plus, I mean, they’re all great. Dark, and creepy, and often sad, but great. Happy endings are lovely, but the sad bits have their place too.
- Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling. I know this series makes its way onto lists like this all the time, but there is a reason. They are awesome. For a lot of people these are childhood favorites, but I actually didn't read them until my late 20s. Of course, I read all seven books in something like 2 weeks and cried my eyes out in the process. So not childhood faves, but lifetime loves.
- Divergent by Veronica Roth. Ok, I admit it, I read a lot of YA fiction. I usually blame my job, I mean, when you make a career out of relating to teens you’d better be reading what teens are reading. Truth be told, I read them because I love them. Again, tears. Lots of tears. But the kind of tears that leave you somehow feeling better. You know, cathartic tears.
- The Princess Bride by William Goldman. Believe it or not, this was a class assignment. I know, weird. Good weird, but weird. I love the movie (I've got gobs of hilarious stories related to the movie if you ever want to hear them), and I was honestly a bit worried that the book wouldn't be a funny. You guys, it’s funnier. I have cried over books more times than I can count, but laughing? Real, genuine, audible laughter? Over a book? That’s far more rare. I literally laughed out loud while reading this one. Like, a lot.
- The Alchemist by Paolo Coelho. Not at all what I expected, but in the best possible way. The story itself is great, but the reason this book really stands out is that it told me more about myself than any other novel I've ever read.
- The Five People You Meet In Heaven by Mitch Albom. I read this book at a point in my life when I really needed the reminder that we’re all connected and that even the seemingly insignificant interactions in our lives can be more important than we ever realize.
- The Client by John Grisham. My mom was a huge Grisham fan, so his books were ever present in the house. When I ran out of books of my own to read I began to read those belonging to my parents, and that meant i picked this one up when i was still quite young. I somehow thought that because the character in the book was a kid, the book itself was appropriate for kids. I was not entirely correct in that assumption, but I read the book anyway. I’m quite certain that I didn't fully comprehend the book, but I loved the whole mystery/suspense business which was new to me at that point.
- Watership Down by Richard Adams. It’s a book about talking rabbits, but not really about talking rabbits. I was also probably a bit young for this one, and I distinctly remember looking up some words in the dictionary (which may well deserve its own place on this list), but when I finally grasped the full magnitude of the story I was glad I had read it. I just wish more people would pick-up on my references to it.
- The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton. Remember how I said To Kill A Mockingbird was the first book that shocked me? Well, that’s true, but the thing is, The Outsiders should have. I mean, *spoiler* there are a BUNCH of dead characters by the end and not one of them out of their teens. Why did that not shock me? Maybe it was because I happened to read it while I was in the midst of an obsession with West Side Story. Sidenote: How is it that I love West Side Story, but I hate Romeo and Juliet? They are, after all, the same story with different names. Maybe it’s the semi-hypnotic finger snapping...
- The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway. Truth be told, I strongly dislike Hemingway. We read this one in high school, and I loved it. It’s just such a sweet story, and for a short time (really short. Like 2 days short) I thought it would be really cool to be a fisherman. I mean, I’m not a man, but you know, whatever. Afterward, I tried to read his other books, but I just couldn't finish them. I don’t think I even got past the first chapter of most of them. Turns out, Hemingway is not my style, but this book is the exception to the rule.
- Lord of the Flies by William Golding. UGH. I HATE this book with the fiery passion of a thousand suns! It’s unsettling, unhappy and supremely unawesome. It also made me doubt my previously resolute decision that if I had children I only wanted boys. That, my friends, is a powerful book.
Monday, September 22, 2014
And now for something completely different...
...well, actually, kind of the same. As promised, here is my expanded list of "honorable mentions." I could probably do 3 more of these lists and still have plenty more to say about plenty more books.