Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Top 5: All Time Favorite Books

Once upon a time, long before television and Netflix, there were these things called books. They were made of paper and ink and they told crazy tales about men and women and life and stuff and you had to use your imagination to fill out the story. I, being the lover of all things ancient, have read quite a few of them (in fact, in college, I MAJORED in reading books…old ones, too. This makes me very special and interesting). If you, too, want to be special and interesting, post your 5 favorite books below. Here are mine:

Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte: A good old-fashioned Gothic romance. Inspired my favorite series of modern novels, the Thursday Next series, by Jasper Fforde.

Catcher in the Rye – J.D. Salinger: I first read Catcher in the Rye in 9th grade and loved it... thought Holden Caulfield was dead right about phonies and all his ranting. I read it again in college and thought Holden was kinda naive and immature. Made me realize I'd grown up a bit, which made me both excited and very sad.

A Man Without a Country – Kurt Vonnegut: I've read just about every book KV wrote and loved them all, but A Man Without a Country kinda summarizes his entire philosophy. The closest he came to writing a memoir.

Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen: I know, I know. Could I be more generic and girly? But it’s really a fantastic bit of literature.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – JK Rowling: Again, I love all the Harry Potter books, but this is my favorite. Such a shame what they did to it on film.

Your turn...


pistols at dawn said...

Maybe it's because I'm a dude, but I can't stand a one of the Bronte sisters/Austen books. "Oh, this gentleman seems a bit uncouth, and not wealthy enough to provide for me! I shall reject his suit so that I can pursue Richer Guy, who will in turn be shown to be most unkind. My [family's] ruin shall seem imminent until First Guy returns, and his estate is large enough for me to love him! The End!"

Also, I refuse on principle to read Harry Potter, because it's a) popular, b) for kids (you should never have the same literary tastes as a 12-year-old), c) a goddamned book about nerdy white kids learning f-ing magic.

That having been said, I suck at top lists, but I'd go Miller's Tropic of Cancer, Exley's A Fan's Notes, Woolf's To the Lighthouse, The Great Gatsby, and...oh, let's say Lolita. I couldn't really pick one Vonnegut book, and I've left off things like Invisible Man, but...oh well.

Red said...

But I am a nerdy white kid...who'd kill to learn magic!

Guys totally don't "get" the Brontes or Jane Austen. Kinda like I don't get Monty Python and the Three Stooges.

Lolita is #6.

doorknob_dan said...

I'm not touching this subject with a ten foot pole, cause all my favorites are Sesame Street coloring books.

BeckEye said...

I think I might have liked "Catcher in the Rye" had I read it when I was young. I just read it last year and was somewhat lukewarm about it.

"Les Miserables" is my favorite book.

BeckEye said...

Oh, and #2 is probably "Lolita." Whattya know, Pistols and I actually agree on something. I just read that recently and I could've cried over Nabokov's writing. I don't think I've read more perfect prose in my life. If you can make people feel sorry for and even ROOT for a damn pedophile, you've got a substantial gift.

Anonymous said...

They still make books? i thought the world wide web replaced those?

Garney said...

Some have already been named that I would pick, but here are 5 more that are among my favorites:

1. Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
2. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon
3. The Princess Bride by William Goldman
4. Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh
5. Microserfs by Douglas Coupland

Liz said...

Trainspotting is SUCH a good book. I need to read more of Welsh's stuff.

If you've read Harry Potter and didn't like it, mock away, but I don't accept criticism from people who've never read it. They're better than they sound.

Heidi said...

1. Autobiography of Malcolm X
Changed my life!
2. The Mating Mind, Geoffrey Miller
Evolutionary psychology but in layman's language. LOVE this book.
3. Pudd'nhead Wilson, Mark Twain
Murder, mystery, racism, twins, fingerprints and a bumbling detective. Good stuff.
4. And Still We Rise, Miles Corwin
Corwin followed a number of teens attending South Central Los Angeles's Crenshaw High School and told their stories. Anyone unfamiliar with the truth of growing up in areas with poverty, gangs, drugs, teen pregnancy, etc., I urge you to read this.
5. The Color of Water, James McBride
The author's tale of his childhood, growing up black and Jewish.

Honorable Mentions: Memoirs of a Geisha (Golden), White Noise (DeLilo), Do or Die (Bing), Girl Interrupted (Kaysen), and Sula (Morrison)

Falwless said...

1. Curious George and the High-Voltage Fence
2. Daddy's New Wife Robert
3. Grandpa Gets a Casket
4. Things Rich Kids Have, But You Never Will
5. Daddy Drinks Because You Cry

Classics, all of them.