I love to read, but I hate when people ask, “What’s your favorite book?”
Like, do you want my favorite childhood book, or my favorite book that I read to my children when they were toddlers? Or do you want my favorite cheap, sappy romance, my favorite whodunnit, or my favorite biography? Maybe you want my favorite series; is that the favorite one from 20 years ago? 15 years ago? Past few years? Or favorite young adult action or fantasy fiction series that my eldest and I read together? There are just so many amazing books!
So here’s my quick and dirty review of several favorites:
George R R Martin is known around the world thanks to his amazing series A Song of Ice and Fire and HBO. I began reading the series before they blew into famedom. Actually, I began the series by standing in the bookmobile, finding the thickest book, flipping to the middle and finding my daughter’s name. Twelve years ago, Arya was not a common name.
Equally famous for her series and the movies made from them is JK Rowling and her Harry Potter series. This is a bandwagon I was late to jump on because I’m one of those people who hate to follow trends. But then I began reading so I could discuss it with my child and I was hooked. I devoured the series as quickly as I could. I’ve watched the movies and was fairly satisfied with them. No screen is equal to the book, but the movies are good enough to rewatch just like rereading the books.
Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt is a book that all children should read. My mother and I read this together, and I’ve been in several classrooms with it read to students. This and Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson are powerful books to a middle-school mind. They help ground the reader into their place in the cosmos while showing that struggling to find that place is universal.
My son loves to be hands-on and outdoors but says he hates to read. I have no real issue with audio books (certainly better than nothing) but I believe everyone is better if they read. My husband came up with the great idea of Where the Red Fern Grows, by Wilson Rawls for my 11 year old, hunting, dog lover. There was still a fight to get him started, but this kiddo did get hooked into the story and really wanted to know what would happen next. I do believe there is a book for everyone, a genre that can satisfy everyone, we must be open to finding it.
There are a few books that I haven’t been able to get into: Moby Dick for one. I feel like it’s a classic and I should be a better person for reading it. But honestly, Catcher in the Rye or East of Eden is more my style. Even Fahrenheit 451. And there have been very few books that I have started that I couldn’t finish. One recently had such erroneous information and descriptions of a process that I lost all respect for the author and could no longer overlook the thin characters or poor plot.
So tell me your favorite books, or the books that are forever in your memory bank. Why did they make such an impression on you?