The Favourites: Day 7 - Books/Authors

"I buy books like a woman buys shoes."

I'm on a roll- another post so soon?
Delaying these posts is just haunting me. 

Books/Authors. This was especially hard for me to narrow down because there really is a lot of good stuff out there. I don't want to brag, but I studied this shit. And if there's anything I feel I can talk about and be comfortable about, it's literature. 

That being said, I need to read more contemporary writing- I always find myself reading the classics.
So recommend away!

1. Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling

You have to hand it to this woman, she really did get a generation of computer/video game kids reading again.
I jumped on the HP bandwagon when the 2nd book (my least favourite...) was published, but began from the beginning: Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone.
All I can say is, for the following 5 summers and beyond, my life was never the same!*

2. Sylvia Plath
with hubby, Ted Hughes

Let's put the whole "head in the oven" thing aside for a minute and just focus on her as a writer, a person. Yes she was angsty (depressed, what you will- I said no oven in the head talk!), but she had drive and passion. From Smith College to Cambridge University, from Mademoiselle editor to a renowned published novel. She's not everyone's cup of tea, and I respect that. The highest grade I ever got in college was a 2:1 (2 points away from a first...) on my BA Dissertation. Can you guess who it was based on?
You do not do, you do not do, anymore black shoe...

3. Le Petit Prince by Antione de St. Exupery

I've already spoken wonders about this book, I don't really think I need to say more. Other than, if you have not read it, you must!

4. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins. My sin, my soul. Lo-lee-ta: the tip of the tongue taking a trip of three steps down the palate to tap, at three, on the teeth. Lo. Lee. Ta.
That was all it took to hook me. Humbert Humbert is a tragic character, an anti-hero if you will. Everything about this book is so right, except Humbert and Lolita's relationship. 
I will not abstain from mentioning the two film adaptations I, personally, love: Kubrick's and Adrian Lyne. James Mason and Jeremy Irons were cast perfectly.

5. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

I read this book for the first about 4 or 5 years ago- pretty late in the game. My first reaction was, "I want a father like Atticus Finch". Not complaining about the one I have now, but Atticus is ... Atticus. A real life hero (in a novel)- more people need to be like him, methinks. Scout is also an unforgettable character.
Movie adaptation is also worth a watch- Gregory Peck does an outstanding job.

6. Sense & Sensibility by Jane Austen

I didn't think I'd like any Jane Austen novel and had never read one until I was forced to do so in college. Well, technically I could have just not read it, but that's not how I roll...
I was pleasantly surprised by Sense & Sensibility (and all of Austen's work, actually). It's not all just romance- and what's not to like about it! This is the kind of novel you stay in bed for, on a rainy day, all bundled up, with a nice cuppa tea at hand. 

7. Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts

This book is more than 1,000 pages long. It is also very, very, very  good. It took me about 4 months to finish it and it truly is one of the best things I ever read. I cried, I laughed and I learned a couple things about life.
" [...] food is music inside the body, and music is food inside the heart."
I, literally, have a little notepad full of quotes from the book- the book itself is full of annotations and folded pages... 1,000 pages may be daunting, but you'll be doing yourself a favour.

8. William Shakespeare

Good ol' Bill Shakey. I go through phases (more so when I was in highschool and college) where I randomly start quoting Shakespeare. I'll have little bits from his plays or sonnets stuck in my head, for no reason. And it's not because I actively sat down and memorized lines, they linger in my head. da-Dum, da-Dum, da-Dum, da-Dum, da-Dum.
We owe a lot of the English language to Sir William. Remember this viral picture from not too long ago?

9. Jules Verne

I picked up my first Jules Verne novel on a whim. I never read much of "science fiction" and believed it 'wasn't my thing' and it'd be too boring, but I was completely wrong! Jules Verne was  ahead of his time. I think he had a time machine of his own, to be honest. If you want to travel, this guy's the man to read.
Just look at him. I imagine sitting by the fireplace, eager children fidgeting about awaiting storytime with Grampa Verne... **

10. Pedro Paramo by Juan Rulfo

When I saw I like to read, I mean I like to read in English. Reading in Spanish, unfortunately, is so hard for me. I understand the language completely, but I'm a slow reader when it comes to my (supposedly) mother tongue, and that frustrates me. Pedro Paramo re-interested me in Latin literature. Magical Realism deserves all the recognition it gets. And this is definitely a classic.

I have a long list of many other books I've enjoyed reading, but I'll save that for later.
What are you reading now? What are your favourite books?

* Book 5 came out during my first trip to Europe! I remember I was in Paris and stopping at every bookstore to see if the had it in stock- my parents were not very pleased...

** I pretty much HATE all movie adaptations of Verne novels. Around the World in 80 Days with Niven and Cantinflas, I can get by with. Journey to the Center of the Earth with James Mason too, but am always disappointed at how different it is...

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