journals word geek

My Favorite Books, and Why You Might Hate Them

“Tell me what you read and I’ll tell you who you are” is true enough,
but I’d know you better if you told me what you reread.
– François Mauriac

Even though I often proclaim myself to be an open book– I quite closed about the books I regularly have open.

If you come over to my house without warning, I’m probably not going to race to do the dishes. I may or may not pick up the coats and dinosaur toys I’ve strewn around the floor. I definitely won’t straighten paintings, hide the litter box, or vacuum.  No, all my preparation time would be spent running around the house, picking up the books left every which way: hiding them, or stacking them on the shelf as if they might never have been read.

Book culture is so strange.  If you don’t like a book, it’s rarely enough to say it’s not in your personal taste, or that you’ve just never gotten into a genre. For some reason, when someone doesn’t like a book, they need to assassinate the characters and tear up the plot.  If they’re feeling kindly, they’ll simply destroy the human who assembled the book instead.

I’m not hiding my books from you.  I’m protecting them.

So here I am, trusting you with some of my favorite books for grown-ups.  I re-read them several times a year.  Judge them kindly because the characters are my friends, the voices echo in my mind, and a tiny piece of the authors themselves live inside of me.

wonderfulstory

This book is undiluted magic.

Like most of Roald Dahl’s books, it’s about the corruptible nature of humankind, the circus-like quest for happiness by way of greed, perverse imagination, and the dull flatness of reaching our dreams.   Also like most of his books, it’s about real magic in every day worlds, the beauty of sacrifice, the virtues in even flawed characters, and the humorous lack of coincidence.  I love the story– it enchants me every time– but I love the writing.  Every time he breaks the third wall, I am charmed to the tips of my toes.

Why You Might Hate It:

  • It’s a short story.  You might, like many others, have short story animosity.
  • The magic in this one is not one of a storybook candyland– it’s more raw.  It’s all about gurus, burned feet, and the possibility of the human mind.
  • It’s not written in the style for which Roald Dahl is commonly known.
  • There’s other short stories in the standard compilation, and they stretch boundaries even farther.
  • He occasionally breaks the third wall.

The Fall by Albert Camus

lachute

This book is written in the language of my heart.  It is how I speak, on the inside.

“When I used to live in France, were I to meet an intelligent man I immediately sought his company. If that be foolish … Ah, I see you smile at that use of the subjunctive. I confess my weakness for that mood and for fine speech in general. A weakness that I criticize in myself, believe me. I am well aware that an addiction to silk underwear does not necessarily imply that one’s feet are dirty. Nonetheless, style, like sheer silk, too often hides eczema. My consolation is to tell myself that, after all, those who murder the language are not pure either. Why yes, let’s have another gin.” – Albert Camus, The Fall

Why You Might Hate It:

  • You probably like breathing after sentences, and paragraphs that eventually end.
  • You probably won’t feel like you understand it.  Or worse, you might understand it perfectly.
  • You might have been traumatized in high school with other works by Camus.  This could bring back bad memories.

The Princess Bride by William Goldman

The Princess Bride

This book is witty absurdity at its finest.

Most people have seen the movie, and I love that I love the movie as much as the book.  They are the same story, told in the best way for their respective mediums– so they are different whilst being the same.  The book takes a hundred circuitous paths to get to each punchline.  The rambling journey is well-worth every word.

Why You Might Hate It:

  • It’s a bit dense, in terms of writing style.   If you like it when someone “gets to the point”– you won’t like this.
  • There’s a lot of non-vital information.  You really don’t have to memorize every person mentioned because most never come up again.
  • It’s full of hyperbole and he often speaks directly to the reader.  Though this is a common complaint, I’m sure it won’t bother you, o best beloved reader.  You are obviously a star-woven connoisseur of hyperbole.

Third Wish by Robert Fulghum

thirdwish

This book is the creative opus of an extraordinary man. Have you ever seen one of those looming machines that take a thousand little tangled stands of string, and weave them together into a tapestry?  That’s this book.  I don’t know if you’d like the finished tapestry… I don’t know if I do.  But I know that there are concepts and images in here that have imprinted themselves on mind for always.  I could write a whole post on concepts from this book that haunt me in the best way possible.

third wish, robert fulghum

Why You Might Hate It:

  • It’s long.  Like, take-it-with-you-on-every-boat-trip-in-case-you-end-up-on-a-deserted-island long.
  • There isn’t really what you would call “a plot”.
  • The ending really enraged some people.
  • There’s a musical soundtrack that comes with it.  You’re not required to play it, but just the existence bothers some people.
  • There are drawings in it.

Kushiel’s Legacy by Jacqueline Carey

KushielChosencover

I can’t even explain how blissfully absorbing this world is.  It parallels Earth-as-we-know-it enough for me to take a firm stand, but it’s fantastical enough to be distinctly elsewhere.  I think I know the lay of Phèdre’s land better than my own.  I journeyed from this book into her next series about a wondrous woman named Namaah, and was equally in love.

“We speak of stories ending, when in truth it is we who end. The stories go on and on.”
― Jacqueline Carey

Why You Might Hate It:

  • Sex.  So much sex. I mean, 50-shades-is-for-rookies type of sex.
  • Triggers of other sorts. Violence. Abandonment. Abuse.
  • The series is long.  It’s broken up into perfectly normal bite-sized pieces, though.  Each book stands alone.
  • The names can be cumbersome.  The main character is Phèdre nó Delaunay de Montrève.

Siddhartha by Herman Hesse

Siddhartha

It may not be fair to say that I “re-read” this book, since in truth, I don’t know if I’ve ever read it in order.  I flip to the chapters that appeal to me regularly, on the days I need them, in the order my heart hears them.

I found the book in a gazebo, on a very sad day.  There was one of those “take a book, leave a book” type shelves there.  I left The Phantom Tollbooth, and I took home Siddhartha.

Why You Might Hate It:

  • I’ve heard it called woo-woo and hippie-dippie.
  • The mysticism is nonspecific.  It’s often explained as a garbled, mistranslated, simplified version of Buddhism.  My advice? Don’t read fiction to learn about religion doctrine.
  • I’ve heard it called boring.  There are no action scenes.

_______________________________

“Words do not express thoughts very well. they always become a little different immediately they are expressed, a little distorted, a little foolish. And yet it also pleases me and seems right that what is of value and wisdom to one man seems nonsense to another.”
― Hermann Hesse, Siddhartha

Are you familiar with any of these books?  What do you re-read?

132 comments

    1. Oh yay! 🙂 I love the fantasticalism of them both. In fact, I thought you captured that same wondrous-essence in Catskinner’s Book.

      (Unrelated, but the picture of you from this year’s label day gets more spam comments than any other post or media I’ve ever posted! :))

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  1. What an incredibly wonderful collection! I think I’d rather like “The Princess Bride” in William Goldman’s eyes! Thank you for sharing a delightful post! Cher xo

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  2. I only know The Fall, but I have loved Camus for a while now. I may have to look at some of these others.

    I re-read old school Stephen King. I am especially fond of The Stand when I am sick. Yes, really. The other book of mine that used to fall apart from re-reading, pre-Kindle days, was On the Beach by Nevil Shute.

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    1. 🙂 I love Camus, too… though The Stranger never resonated with me as it does others. I’ve never read On The Beach so I’m adding it to my to-read list, yay! 🙂

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  3. I haven’t read these but see nothing to dislike here. But I get the pre-visit book shuffle!
    I’ve taken to re-reading past favourites. I have Graham Greene’s The Power and the Glory nearby waiting to be re-read. I loved Greene for awhile but have been an absent lover for years. I’ve read High Fidelity, A Passage to India and Slaughterhouse Five three times each.

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    1. I love The Power and the Glory! High Fidelity and A Passage to India are also favorites. Sadly, Vonnegut never brightened me the way he impacted so many others (like my husband), but I re-read him every few years to see if one day I’ll “get it”. 😀

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    1. YAY! Me too. I was so happy to have stumbled upon it… because I love the series. Even though it’s very different, I also loved her more recent book Santa Olivia. It’s awesome!

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    1. You’d love Dahl! Actually, you might really enjoy some of the other short stories that are bundled with Henry Sugar. There’s one about a hitchhiker that is fascinating. 🙂

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      1. I just started to try short stories about 10 years ago. Now I LOVE them. I can safely say, it’s the ONLY way I can read Stephen King. 😉 My fav is a Canadian Author Charles de Lint, and his wonderful short stories about the characters from his Newbury books – some call it Urban Fantasy. You have a little of The Crow Girls about you… they’re ancient beings from the Crow clan (native American), and terribly wise – but also love candy, live in a tree and like to talk in circles, but in the end there is always a layer of truth and knowledge to them.

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  4. Here are my thoughts with no character assassination involved. 1. You can never go wrong with Roald Dahl, Robert Fulghum or The Princess Bride. That being said, because you included those in your list I can only conclude that you are incredibly intelligent and in possession of excellent taste in literature. Although I haven’t read the other books, if you like the ones I know then I will without question trust your judgement on the others.

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    1. 🙂 Aww, character love! That’s what I like to see. 🙂

      The problem with me is that I love almost everything I read in one way or another, so it makes my taste sort of unreliable… but thank you muchly for the compliment!! 😀

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  5. I would NEVER EVER make rude remarks about someone’s reading preferences in their own home- EVER… I firmly believe “it’s not what you read, it’s THAT you read”… And I’m fan of Camus 🙂 and Satre as well… along with stuff people would probably sneer at – but I don’t care b/c I think every book should be loved by someone and reading is a joy – for me it’s an escape – so I will read what I want –

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    1. I don’t mind as much if the books were actually read… so often the “Oh that book is…” comment is followed by sheer guesswork. If you haven’t read it, no opinions please. 😉 I get not liking a book, though… and wanting to express that. But yep, I would draw the line at doing so in someone else’s house. 😀 Ah, I love Satre!

      “I think every book should be loved by someone.” — this is such a wonderfully wise and beautiful sentiment. I love it!

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      1. Even if I don’t like a book and I know someone likes/loves it – there’s no reason for me to tell them I didn’t unless they specifically ask – then I’ll say something like “that one just didn’t grab me” – I don’t need to pontificate on why… unless they ask – it’s about respect.

        I’m pretty sure it’s the librarian-lizard-brain part of me that thinks those things ~

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    1. 🙂 It’s a great one. I think of it so often when blogging my nonsense. I remind myself that it may be nonsense to some… but perhaps valuable to someone else! 🙂

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  6. I loved The Princess Bride, partially because of that weird narration thing. Of course, I also went into it knowing it wasn’t an adaptation but a made-up adaptation, which made the weird scenes that meander funny because they were stranger.

    There are quite a few things I haven’t read here that look interesting-yay, more to add to the TBR list!

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    1. Exactly!! The more you know about The Princess Bride, the weirder it is…. and the more amazingly hilarious that weird is. 🙂 If you do tackle any of these, I hope you enjoy them!

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  7. All those books are great. I have not read Kushiel’s Legacy but I will. I’m always looking for a good book to read. I signed up with Goodreads to read 60 books in 2014. Thanks, Lucy

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  8. Since I adore a good number of your choices, I’m going to take the recommendation and go read the others. 😀

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  9. I’ve never read any of those. Some are by authors I don’t care for and some in genres I don’t particularly like. But I celebrate that the world has room for me to like my books and you to like yours. Mostly I like that you READ! I’ve never understood why so many people feel that if they don’t like something they must sway the world to a universal opinion that it’s bad. And/or condemn anyone who likes it. I honor that you love these
    Two of my unpopular faves: Georgette Heyer’s novels and The Secret Garden, which I’ve re-read every couple of years since I was about 8 (never have thought any of the movies have done it justice). No one I know likes Heyer and few are as avid about The Secret Garden. But I stand by ’em!

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    1. Thank you, Leigh! I also celebrate readership, in whatever form it takes. 🙂 I do like The Secret Garden, though I much favored A Little Princess. Still, I read them both many, man times! I love Heyer’s novels as well– not so much the thriller-esque ones, but definitely the regency and historical novels! 🙂

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  10. Spoken from the heart! “Judge them kindly because the characters are my friends, the voices echo in my mind, and a tiny piece of the authors themselves live inside of me” I can so relate to that! Great post… 🙂

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  11. I read Hesse and Camus and Princess Bride, but long ago. You do remind me of a book I reread, one by Herman Hesse. Beneath the Wheel, the one about the school kid and what happens to him. I taught for quite some time in uni, and I honestly felt that we were grinding students into dust and sameness, and that Hesse had a cautionary tale about this in his book. The destruction of the young, something that stays with me. I pick up that book and flip through it every now and then, just so that I don’t forget.

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    1. I do that with pretty much all of Hesse’s books– I flip through them, just to remember and re-experience the flashes of insight that they create. I’m fond of Beneath the Wheel as well — part of my dancing from school to school was justified to my parents, using that book as an example. 🙂

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      1. It’s a tough book for me, really. I still have that mental image of that poor kid floating down the river… pushed so hard, trying to meet so many expectations… I have three kids, so I’m always cognizant of not pushing them into the mire. Young minds deserve better. I guess we all do.

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  12. I love your descriptions of these books. Thank you for allowing us to peak in your library. Siddhartha was my favorite book in high school. I think it’s time to reread it!

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    1. You know, I’m not sure. 🙂 All I know is that I start each week with a stack of books, and at the end of the week, I’ve run out of stuff to read. It’s magic! 🙂

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    1. I love bookshops! I miss them, actually. Once upon a time, they were in abundance, but not so much anymore. I remember buying all the dime-priced Harlequin romances at a used bookstore once– like a 100 or more maybe. I set them on the counter and said, “Don’t judge me.” and the elderly guy behind the counter said, “Readers don’t judge readers.” 🙂 It’s a philosophy I try to stick to. 🙂

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  13. “I can think, I can wait. I can fast.” I often think of these lines as the secret to all of life.
    Funny, I’ve read most of the other authors, but not the obscure titles you uncover. Thank you for challenging me to go deeper. {{{{Hugs}}} Kozo

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    1. I think you’d especially like the story of Henry Sugar, Kozo… I see many parallels between his life to yours, but thankfully, not all things. His journey is one towards enlightenment, like yours– so perhaps that’s why they resonate so closely. 🙂 *hugs*

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  14. What a great post!! ❤ To be honest, I haven't read most of these books but I added them to my Summer reading list! So, thank you!

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  15. I knew you spoke Camus.

    I have to give the Fulghum a read. It comes with a soundtrack? Intriguing.

    I read books over and over. Like old friends.

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    1. Third Wish is really enchanting, in a subtle way. The whole book is based on a concept that I think bloggers would particularly understand. A man asks a stranger to “be a witness” to his life– just see and hear his existence. That’s how the first two characters align.

      I didn’t even listen to the soundtrack, though. 🙂

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  16. I like your bookshelf friends. They’d be safe with me. Camus is one of my heroes – my favourite book by him is “The Outsider”. Roald Dahl rocked my childhood, but his best adult book has to be his collection of short stories – pure genius!

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    1. 🙂 I love it when someone’s read Roald Dahl’s shorts– they’re amazing. 🙂 And I love The Outsider, too! I’d completely trust you with my books, MM. I know they’d be safe in your care. 🙂

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  17. What a great post! I *adore* ‘The Princess Bride’ (the book, I mean, as well as the movie), and I love ‘Henry Sugar’, too. I’ve always wanted to read ‘Siddartha’ (though I wouldn’t have left ‘The Phantom Tollbooth’ in place of it, oh no), and this post has made me more determined. Not too sure about the Carey novel or the one that goes on forever with its own soundtrack – but I really respect and admire you for loving them.

    This was such a brilliant post. *goes off inspired*

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    1. I’m glad you understand the importance of leaving The Phantom Tollbooth. 🙂 I love that book and it remains one of my favorites, though I didn’t include it because I talk so often of “kids books” already that I thought I’d focus on the ones for older-kids. 🙂 Still, leaving it behind felt right and fair because Siddhartha had so much of the same wisdom, set to a more cosmic-grown-up tune.

      Not even two years later, I ran across the older woman who found my copy of The Phantom Tollbooth in the gazebo and traded it for the only book she had with her at the time– the Bible. She told me she loved trading-libraries because they encourage you to trade the wisdom and comfort you have, for the wisdom and comfort you need. I was happy my Milo found his way to her. 🙂

      I forgot where I was going with this… haha, so… yay for book inspiration! 😀

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      1. Well, when you explain it like that, I’ll forgive you for leaving Milo behind… 😉 I’m glad to meet another reader who knows how important kids’ books are, and how wise they can be.

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  18. Yes, this is definitely putting a vulnerable bone out there isn’t it? This seems to a common theme coming up in the reader lately. I love it. Anyway, exposing your books is a new branch on the theme. How cool is this?
    I can only claim to know two – The Princess Bride and Siddhartha, which was the beginning of the undoing of all the Baptist, Catholic, Evangelical,fear messages that never quite truly resonated during childhood. The book didn’t fully direct me, but I loved how it allowed me to question and re-think.
    I don’t know how you always come up with these wonderful topics, but obviously you are in a correct element. Thanks again rara!

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    1. I think Hesse very often offers a “beginning” to people– flashes of insight and realization. It’s partly why I love his work. 🙂

      Thank you! For everything. 😀

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  19. Ah! Now this is great, Rara. I, like you, am an avid reader – and always have a gallimaufry of books on the go (and, again like you, I protect them, hide them away from prying eyes and leaden souls!). What is so exciting to me is this: I have not, as yet, read all the books you have mentioned! Ooh, goodie – this means serious FUN! And has given me an idea for a blog post. I am, at present, re-reading all the Terry Pratchett Discworld novels, at a rate of one (or two) a day – lovely! xxx

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    1. I *love* Discworld! The books themselves are brilliant, and they have an added sparkle to them because they were recommended to me originally by a very dear friend who isn’t much of a reader. There’s something so inspiring about an author that can convert a non-reader into a book-lover.

      Yay for readers! Thanks, Ali! xo!

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  20. Great selection, Rara. On my list: To Kill a Mockingbird, an absolute classic. I fell in love with Withering Heights at university – dark, and oh-so-juicy. I can reread it and reread it.

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    1. To Kill a Mockingbird was actually the very next book! I only removed it from the post because I had already hit 1300 words. I just love Atticus. I think I have the whole book memorized! 😀

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  21. I haven’t read any of these books (though I have heard of The Princess Bride), but I love the way you describe each one! And you’re right; books are personal things and reveal little bits of information about you, it’s only natural you’d want to protect them. 🙂

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  22. It’s sad, that. And if you say that it wasn’t to your taste, they’ll demand you to butcher the book, because ‘you must not have been paying attention’.
    I loved The Princess Bride. It’s one of the books that just hearing its name makes me smile. The introduction nearly did me in, however, as I was expecting fantasy, not ‘boring’-real-world. Really glad I didn’t put it down^^

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    1. It’s true… the culture is fed on both sides. If you want to say you don’t like a book, a lover of the book will force you to mutilate it… sad sad. Luckily, there are many of us who love books and the people who love them… unconditionally. 🙂

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  23. When people hear that Atlas Shrugged is one of my favorite books, it’s often met with ridicule. The debates have gotten nasty in the past.

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    1. I can imagine! Like Camus, people so often feel like they were tortured by Atlas Shrugged in their youth. 🙂 Still, if it’s your favorite, then I’m happy you found your way to it. Good people deserve books that ask to be re-read. 🙂

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  24. Oh no—not more books to add to my list of to be read books!!! I love that you have such a varied taste and they all look so intriguing!!! Thanks for sharing! Oh and thanks for sending Zoe over to tell me about her blogger friend. Will definitely be doing a post to support her!

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    1. Thank you, Beth Ann! You’ve created such a community of care and giving, that I thought of you right away when she was looking for people willing to reach out. 🙂 Thanks for everything!

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  25. I don’t think you have anything to be ashamed of. 🙂

    I read and really enjoyed the first two Kushiel books. I’d read more, but they are massive, time-consuming things, aren’t they? I’ll get back to that world some day. (And yes, there’s SO MUCH SEX, but it’s well-written and actually an important part of the culture, the character, and a larger story, unlike so many books).

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    1. Thank you, Kate! 🙂

      Yes, the Kushiel books are massive! They’re actually quite normal for sci-fi/fantasy, but still… long books! I love how critical every piece of the story– including the sex– is to the books. It makes it seems to purposeful and universal. I’m glad to know a fellow fan! 🙂 xo!

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  26. Hm, I might have to borrow this idea if you don’t mind terribly. 🙂 I’m not familiar with your favorites, but I’m sure they’re all well-worth the read. Also, Road Dahl is phenomenal, no matter what.

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    1. Of course not, borrow away! We’re all sharing ideas here in the ‘sphere… that’s what makes it awesome! 🙂 As to Roald Dahl – yes. Absolutely! 😀

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  27. I love the Princess Bride – it took me a while to read through it but I eventually grew to love it. I’m also reading Kushiel’s Dart at the moment – I’m surprised how much I also love this! Yes, there’s lots of 50-shades-doesn’t-even-come-close kind of sex but the story, world-building, character development and wisdom is wonderful. Haven’t finished it yet but everytime I read it, I get sucked in. I’m at the part where Phedre goes on a boat…

    If you like that series, you might also like Anne Bishop’s The Black Jewels Trilogy, another one I’m surprised I liked so much. Also quite dark and brutal but very rewarding.

    There are a few books close to my heart – I know so many people love it but Pride and Prejudice means a lot to me. It was one of the first books I fell in love with (after Charlie and the Chocolate Factory). Your post has inspired me to think about my favourites and write about them!

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    1. I love Anne Bishop and all her work! I think I’ve read everything by her. 🙂 And I know you’ll love the Kushiel’s series if you’ve gotten as far as you have. So many people give up after the first few pages, with all those names… but, la, it’s worth it! Every little piece builds up into something wonderful. 🙂

      I’d love to read your post on fave books, so be sure to tell me when it’s up! 🙂 I’m a fan of Pride & Prejudice as well! 🙂

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  28. I’ve never read any of these. I can say that I now kind of want to read them all.
    I know how it can be hard to share what books you love with others. Sometimes people can’t understand the connections we can have with that world and those characters.
    Thank you for sharing, I’m sure it was difficult. 🙂

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  29. The Princess Bride is the only one of these I’ve even heard of, and that’s because of the movie. So, no, I’m not judging you. Of course, I never would. Unless, of course, you told me you don’t like Star Wars, then I’m TOTALLY judging you.

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  30. I don’t even like the movie version of The Princess Bride, but I adore the book. I have paragraphs highlighted, that’s how much I loved it.

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    1. I love both versions too much to decide which I love better. I have this mild obsession with Andre the Giant, you see… 🙂 But yes, the book is BRILLIANT! So glad you enjoyed it too! 🙂

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  31. The only book from your list I’m familiar with is The Princess Bride, which I love! I’ll have to add the others to my “To Read” list.

    The one book I read over and over again is “Where the Red Fern Grows.” I bawl like a baby everytime, but it also makes me happy that love like that exists. I also read “Scarlett” sequel to “Gone with the Wind” every summer vacation. Haha! Such a fluff book, but I love it and it keeps me entertained.

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    1. I hope you enjoy them if you decide to tackle them! 🙂 Where The Red Fern Grows still makes me bawl like a baby, 😀 And I love Gone with the Wind and Scarlett, though I only get a chance to re-read them every few years! 🙂

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  32. I’ve heard of a few of these books, but never read them. Clearly I’m missing out on some good stuff.

    I re-read I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith on a regular basis. It’s YA so ppl roll their eyes when I mention it. But I re-read it because it’s the first book that I ever read that told me that it was ok to want to be a writer. Plus the story line is delightful, bittersweet.

    [… and now, as y’all roll your eyes, I shall wander off to find the book & read it again!]

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    1. I LOVE I Capture The Castle!! YA, Schma, a good book is a good book! 🙂 I’ve read so many YA novels that blew me away with characters I love that I never give it’s genre a second thought. 🙂

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  33. I have always been a fan of Roald Dahl since I read..James and the giant Peach….something about it spoke to me..the absurdity..the hilarity..and the real life..this is what I encounter everyday…so I look forward to reading this book..and am sad..in all my reading that I have never heard of this book…yet I will find it and read…
    I reread children’s books or what they label as children’s books…they are books I discovered in my childhood..as places of safety…yet I can relate to them on so many levels..and they applied to my life to this day…one of them is ” A Wrinkle in Time”..by Madeline L. Engle…all of her books are from another space..and speak to the awkwardness one feels from not being like anyone else…like watching a huge pink elephant walk across the room..and you sit stand with your jaw hitting the floor and want to touch the pink elephant..and no one else sees it…they almost bump into it and still do not see it…
    I reread so many things..and each time I find a new thing I like about it..and want to sit with for ever…
    When I moved…made a huge transition..to reduce myself down to a portable entity..sad really..I gave away my books(along with many other things) and those books were life to me…I do not know if anyone can grasp that..but each one I had to give away..was liking a tear in me…and I still feel it…
    So thank you for these titles…it has spurred me on to make myself..not so portable..and take back..a history brushed away….

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    1. I love children’s books, but since I so often speak of them, I’ve left them off this particular list. A Wrinkle in Time is a huge part of my life. 🙂

      Like you, I once had many shelves of books and now have less than 15. It was the hardest of all things to give up. I completely understand the loss.

      Since then, I’ve started rebuilding books (in e-format, but still), and it’s so comforting to have my friends with me again. 🙂

      I hope you get to experience that same reunion!

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  34. I love Rold Dahl! I have a collection of his short stories which are all amazing and twilight zone-esque. I don’t think I’ve read the one you’ve mentioned though so I’ll have to check it out!

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  35. There aren’t many books I reread, but Siddhartha is one of them and so is the Princess Bride. Have you read Narziss and Goldmund by Herman Hesse? I am about to reread it. I read it when I was about 16 and remember it having a profound effect then so have some trepidation about rereading it but I think it’s got to be done!
    I love your lists of reasons you might not like a book, though a lot seem like reasons *to* read 🙂 I am intrigued especially by the Kushiel’s Legacy as several Goodreads friends have also rated that series highly but (I blush to admit it) the covers have always put me off!!

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    1. I’ve read everything by Hesse, actually… and I re-read most of it, though usually in the same manner as Siddhartha, which is to say– in pieces, and in no particular order. All of his work has had a profound impact on me… and all in different ways.

      I really do recommend the Carey books if you aren’t too afraid of sex as a topic. (It’s very naturally built into the framework of the society and isn’t at all gratuitous.) It is fantasy, though… and I know fantasy novels aren’t everyone’s cup of tea. 🙂

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  36. Siddhartha is incredible. His ‘The Prodigy’ is quite incredible as well. I really wanna read Camus. I hope I can find him for 2 buks in an op shop somewhere. Have you read Shantaram, roaring rara?

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    1. Though perhaps not the most ethical way to obtain a book, I know several of Camus’ works are available online as PDFs if you just do a search for them. 🙂

      I have not read Shantaram, but it looks awesome! I’ve requested it at my library and hopefully I get it soon! 😀 Thanks, Rob!

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