Tuesday, April 20, 2010

These are a few of my favorite things...

I was reading Jon Paul's blog yesterday, about famous author's favorite books, and started to post an essay in response to his question: What are your favorite books?

As I told him, I have a list of favorite colors, and I keep adding to it--so there's no way that I could choose just one favorite book!!! No way! But the question has come up before, and there are a few I remember, off the top of my head, that I almost always think of, when I think of favorites. Some are best categorized by author, some are not. But here are some of my faves.

"To Kill a Mockingbird" by Harper Lee--I don't know what it is about this book, but I think it has me in its spell, even though it's been years since I read it. I loved it then, and without remembering why, I love it now.

"Harry Potter" series, by J.K. Rowling--I've loved Harry Potter for a long time. I think sometimes that she has given me inspiration, actually.

"Stardust," by Neil Gaiman, and incidentally, "The Graveyard Book" ... oh, and let's just toss in "Anansi Boys." Probably my very favorite ones of his many books, though I enjoy and love everything he's written. Talk about inspiration!

Agatha Christie--she is pretty much the only mystery writer I read. She's so prolific, too! I have loved everything of hers that I've read. Especially the stand-alones--those are really my favorites, of hers.

O. Henry--the first story I read of his was "The Gift of the Magi," and as much as I like that one, I think it gets overdone. He is a really fun writer, though, and I love all of his short story collections.

Isaac Asimov--let me clarify this by saying, not everything! But I do enjoy his short stories--and have you read the Norby the Robot series? *Love* that!

"Mary Poppins" by P.L. Travers, and "Mr. Popper's Penguins" by Richard and Florence Atwater, are books that my dad used to read to me at night, and have always been really special to me. On the same note, he also read all three of the original trilogy of Star Wars books (based on the movies, of course, with pictures from the movie). While I can't claim them as favorites, they were also special.

"Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of Nimh" by Robert C. O'Brien. OK--have you read this book? Seriously. Read it. It won a newberry award in the 70s. I should preface this with a statement that I was in love with mice when I was little. But even if you aren't, this is absolutely fantastic.

"Heart of Darkness" by Joseph Conrad--So, I like a wide variety of books. Have you ever seen Apocalypse Now? I haven't, but from what I understand, this is what it was based on. Most of my classmates hated reading this book, and I can't say I blame them...but the symbolism was so exciting, and the ideas so dark and twisted, that I spent a lot of time enjoying it. Go figure.

"The Most Dangerous Game," by Richard Connell. What a twisted concept! But I love these off the wall ideas that make it in literature. This deserves its spot here.

Which leads me into works by Shirley Jackson. (The Lottery among them.) My aunt thought these were twisted, as well--and they are. But such strange ideas! At least they're only words, here.

There are more--ones I'm not remembering off hand--but these are the first ones that pop into my head when trying to make that "favorite" determination.

So, what about you? What are your favorite stories/authors/books?


Amalia T. said...

I used to love Anne McCaffrey, but the latest stuff she's put out hasn't done anything for me really, and the more I write the less I enjoy some of her other books. I think I am just growing out of her :(

I do love Robert Heinlein though, still and always!

Stephanie Thornton said...

Man, I haven't thought about Nimh in a long time. That was a good one!

Shain Brown said...

I think you will find this so interesting. I saw it today after reading another of my regularly read blogs.


Amber Tidd Murphy said...

What a great list! I love Shirley Jackson, too.

Can't wait to "borrow" this post idea!

Jon Paul said...

Yeah--I forgot all about "Heart of Darkness", and yes, Apocalypse Now! was greatly influenced.

Great list you have here, Sarah. Thanks for putting it up.

Just Another Sarah said...

Amalia: I've been meaning to read her books...I've never really gotten into her stuff, though. I'll have to read Robert Heinlein, though!

Stephanie: Oh my gosh, you read The Rats of Nimh??? I run into so few people who have! I love, love, love the story.

Shain: Thanks for posting that list! I totally did find it interesting--I am always interested in banned books. I noticed several of my faves from the list on it (Harry Potter #1!) and saw another that should have been included: A Wrinkle in Time, a book I will always love!

Amber: Yay! I'll have to check out your list! I'm glad you like Shirley Jackson, too!

Jon Paul: Thanks for the idea! It was fun to think of some of my faves. :)