Saturday, April 07, 2007


More on Favorite Books

My post on favorite books, based on an MPR program, had two takers. Kim at Knit Whimsies and Joanne at Poppy Seed Heart both posted about their favorite literature. Kim did it with a twist, choosing to highlight her favorite authors. Joanne gave a nice summary of why each book was her favorite. This is a difficult little exercise. While my list is pretty firm - only two are ones that I could switch out for something else (My Lord Bag of Rice and Fahrenheit 451), the rest are definite - I have many other favorite writers. (Just figure that I pretty much enjoy all the other works of the writers on the first list.) I decided that my other favorite writers should get their due as well, so here goes:

Michael Crichton - The guy really knows how to tell a story, always with a scientific bent, which I really like.

Edgar Allan Poe - The original master of horror. My absolute favorite of his is the poem "The Raven." Nothing beats reading this aloud.

J.K. Rowling - Imaginative, able to write about a gazillion characters and somehow readers manage to keep them all straight. I've only read books 1-4, so I have some catching up to do.

Amulya Malladi - I have loved both of the books I've read of hers - "The Mango Season" and "Serving Crazy with Curry." I think perhaps I've been reincarnated from India. I have always had an affinity for the country. Maybe it's just because I read and loved Frances Hodgson Burnett's books as a kid ("The Secret Garden" and "A Little Princess").

Stephen King - For as prolific as this guy is, I've only read two of his books - "On Writing" and "The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon." Both are fabulous. I shy away from his horror because I'm not a horror fan, except for Poe, of course.

Margaret Atwood - She's an excellent writer, and she's here for that reason. The endings of her stories are dark and leave me very unsettled, which is why they didn't make my very best list.

Kate DiCamillo - "Because of Winn Dixie" and "The Tale of Despereaux" are simply wonderful children's stories. They hooked me.

Growing up, I was a huge mystery reader. Agatha Christie, the Nancy Drew series, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and Alfred Hitchcock's compilations of short stories were the thing. I'm a big fan of Dr. Seuss, but more so as an adult than I was as a kid. My all-time favorite children's book was a Little Golden Book called "The Saggy Baggy Elephant." One-two-three, kick! One-two-three, kick! He danced through the forest, and then someone made fun of him and he hid in a cave. Eventually, he is told by other elephants that he is beautiful and he is happy again.

This list and my previous one barely scratch the surface of all the reading I've done in my life. There's nothing in here that's nonfiction, for one. My other problem is that I've read many marvelous books over the years, but they don't stick with me. In order to keep track (which helped me with today's post), I've been recording the books I read in a small notebook since 2003. It's annotated, which jogs my memory. It also shows me that I've spent a lot of time reading. Yeah!

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