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Thirty favorite books

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manifestlynot View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote manifestlynot Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Apr 2019 at 8:18pm
If I make a list of 30 books, it will become 130 very quickly, lol. But when my writing is struggling, these ten books inspire me for different reasons.

1. Catch 22 - for tone, irony, and political satire.

2. The Nightingale - for historical fiction and flashback structure. And strong female characters.

3. Lonesome Dove - for descriptive prose that doesn’t lag and characterization.

4. The Stand - for big picture plotting and development.

5. Beloved - for unconventional structure.

6. We Need to Talk About Kevin - for audience manipulation.

7. Middlesex - for character backstories and development.

8. The Virgin Suicides - for narrative perspective and tone.

9. Under the Banner of Heaven - for historical fiction/nonfiction

10. Anything by David Sedaris - for authentic voice.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dashesndots Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Apr 2019 at 9:30pm
Originally posted by alpaca_shearer alpaca_shearer wrote:

There are A LOT of books on this list I haven't heard of! It's crazy how varied everyones tastes are. So interesting! The Hollow Chocolate Bunnies of the Apocalypse? I'm looking that up!!!

It's both hilarious and demented!  I stumbled on it back in college and the premise was so intriguing I had to buy it.  It didn't disappoint!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kcraven Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Apr 2019 at 9:36pm
My list is more than 30, but the books I would never get rid of are the books I've had signed, or the books I've had since I was a little girl. Here they are (kids books first)

Wrinkle in Time
Narnia Chronicles
Everything by LM Montgomery
The Hungry Thing
The Sesame Street Busy Book (okay, it has a GREAT cookie recipe)

Blind Assassin
Warlight
The Clay Girl
Girl Mans Up
Women Talking
Dogs at the Perimeter
The Night Stages
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Briana Una Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Apr 2019 at 9:46pm
In no order, really:< ="WebKit-mso-list-quirks-style">

Rebecca – Daphne du Maurier

2.     The Second Sex – Simone de Beauvoir

3.     The Complete Works of Plato – Plato

4.     Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte 

5.     The Velveteen Rabbit -  Margery Williams

6.     Pride & Prejudice – Jane Austen

7.     Uprooted – Naomi Novik 

8.     IT – Stephen King

9.     Cujo – Stephen King

10. The Shining – Stephen King

11. Wizard and Glass – Stephen King

12. Rage – Richard Bachmann

13. How I Live Now – Meg Rosoff

14.  The Perks of Being a Wallflower – Stephen Chboksy

15.  Blankets – Craig Thompson

16.  The Fountainhead – Ayn Rand (As a shy, submissive, terrified teen I needed someone like Howard Roark to show me I was allowed to take up space in the world; this is not an endorsement of Ayn Rand. Thanks for coming to my TED Talk.)

17. The Brothers Karamazov – Fyodor Dostoevsky

18. Hatchet – Gary Paulsen

19. The Emotional Craft of Fiction – Donald Maass

20. Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy 

21. Vaclav & Lena – Haley Tanner 

22. The Trees – Ali Shaw

23.  The Phantom of the Opera – Gaston LeRoux

24. Dragonwyck – Anya Seton

25. The Ocean at the End of the Lane – Neil Gaiman

26. A Dangerous Fortune – Ken Follett

27. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone – J.K. Rowling

28. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix – J.K. Rowling

29. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince – J.K. Rowling

30. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – J.K. Rowling



Edited by Briana Una - 08 Apr 2019 at 9:49pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote alpaca_shearer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Apr 2019 at 10:49pm
Harry Potter is repping hard on this thread!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Lookit There Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Apr 2019 at 11:10pm
It seemed like a daunting task, but it was surprisingly easy (especially when I stopped trying to put them in order).
The Top 12 are in order:
1. Tess of the D'Urbervilles, Thomas Hardy
2. Rabbit, Run, John Updike
3. The Magnificent Ambersons, Booth Tarkington 
4. The World According to Garp, John Irving
5. McTeague, Frank Norris
6. To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee
7. All the King's Men, Robert Penn Warren
8. Earthly Possessions, Anne Tyler
9. The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, Carson McCullers
10. A Thousand Acres, Jane Smiley
11. Atonement, Ian McEwan
12. The Haunting of Hill House, Shirley Jackson

The remaining 18 are not:
13. Harriet the Spy, Louise Fitzhugh
14. Bleak House, Charles Dickens
15. Little Women, Louisa May Alcott
16. The Bonfire of the Vanities, Tom Wolfe
17. My Sunshine Away, M.O. Walsh
18. Ragtime, E L Doctorow
19. The Prince of Tides, Pat Conroy
20. Ghost Story, Peter Straub
21. The Heart's Invisible Furies, John Boyne 
22. Moby-Dick, Herman Melville
23, The Sheltering Sky, Paul Bowles
24. Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte
25. Sense and Sensibility, Jane Austen
26. The Color Purple, Alice Walker
27. The Lost Language of Cranes, David Leavitt
28. Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant, Anne Tyler
29. Charming Billy, Alice McDermott 
30. ??? - I like to think I haven't read it yet

12

13

17.

27. 




Edited by Lookit There - 08 Apr 2019 at 11:11pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote justmel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Apr 2019 at 12:02am
This was HARD. My husband and I sold our house last year and are currently spending the winter in our RV in Texas, and all our belongings, including the many, many boxes of books I kept after The Purge, are in storage in Wisconsin.  So I not only had to do this blind (without the books), but I'm having real problems remembering what I kept or didn't keep.  I do know I kept more than thirty, ha ha. But anyway my list starts with kids, mg, ya, and then kind of loses any particular order or focus:

1.       The Big Orange Splot                      Daniel Manus Pinkwater                              

2.       Harriet the Spy/The Long Secret                Louise Fitzhugh

3.       A Wrinkle in Time                             Madeleine L’Engel

4.       By the Great Horn Spoon              Sid Fleischmann

5.       Nightbirds on Nantucket               Joan Aiken

6.       The Egypt Game                               Zilpha Keatley Snyder

7.       Up a Road Slowly                             Irene Hunt

8.       The Outsiders                                    SE Hinton

9.       Harry Potter series (yes, all 7. It’s all one story.)  JK Rowling

10.   On Writing                                          Stephen King

11.   The Writer on Her Work                                ed. Janet Sternburg

12.   Writers at Work (Paris Review series—I can’t remember which one I have, but I’d have them all if I could)

13.   The Composite Novel: The Short Story Cycle in Transition               Maggie Dunn and Ann R. Morris

14.   Love Medicine                                   Louise Erdrich

15.   Huckleberry Finn                              Mark Twain

16.   Frankenstein                                     Mary Shelley

17.   The Historian                                     Elizabeth Kostova

18.   The Dante Club                                 Matthew Pearl

19.   To Kill a Mockingbird                      Harper Lee

20.   Four Quartets                                    TS Eliot

21.   The Collected Poems of Sylvia Plath/Arial

22.   The Kite Runner                                Khaled Husseini

23.   Life of Pi                                               Yann Martel

24.   Things Fall Apart                               Chinua Achebe

25.   Leaves of Grass                                 Walt Whitman

26.   Collected Short Stories of Nathaniel Hawthorne

27.   The Collected Essays of Ralph Waldo Emerson

28.   Walden/The Journals of Henry David Thoreau

29.   The Riverside Shakespeare OR The Norton Shakespeare                 Stephen Greenblatt

30.   Everything by Dick Francis (this is about 35 books, but who’s counting?)

TBR:       The Handmaid’s Tale, Margaret Atwood

 

                All the Light We Cannot See, Anthony Doerr

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote RichmondRoad Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Apr 2019 at 12:36am

There certainly is an impressive mixture here - and it goes to show the diversity, not only of the authors, but also of the audience. 
I’m always surprised when, in these sort of polls amongst a predominantly American group, Henry Miller fares so badly when he is, in many circles, regarded as one of the cornerstones of American literature. Kurt Vonnegut hasn’t fared as well so far amongst his country folk either.

So here’s a vote for Nexus/Sexus/Plexus by Henry Miller 
and 
The Sirens of Titan by Kurt Vonnegut.

At the top of my list would be 

One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez.

and I need to put some Australians in the list so ....

Bliss by Peter Carey

and

A Fraction of The Whole by Steve Tolz

and I cannot leave out 

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S Thompson


As someone else has said, though, any list I made might be different tomorrow.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Alex Grey Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Apr 2019 at 2:56am
All of Terry Pratchett's Discworld Novels (which is probably more than 30!)

Isaac Asimov's Foundation trilogy and a volume of very clever short stories - Asimov's Mysteries

There will be more - I love reading, mainly sci-fi/fantasy, but these are the ones that jumped to the forefront :-)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote nod1v1ng Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Apr 2019 at 8:19am
This seems impossible, and I imagine on another day (or if I were at home in front of my bookshelves) some of the list would stay, others would not. In no particular order except ABNW will always be my #1:

1: A Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
2: Turn of the Screw and Other Ghost Stories, by Henry James
3-8: The Sevenwaters series by Juliet Marillier
9: Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley
10 & 11: Illium and Olympos by Dan Simmons
12: The Cherry Orchard by Anton Chekhov (I know it’s a play :P)
13: The Martian Chronicales by Ray Bradbury
14-19: The Books of Earthsea by Ursula K LeGuin
20: 2001: A Space Odessey by Arthur C Clark
21: The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
22: The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson (I wanna by SJ when I grow up)
23-25: Dragonsong, Dragonsinger, and Dragondrums by Anne McCaffery (all the Pern books were great but these were by far my favorite)
26: A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle (subsequent 2 books were also great)
27: Contact by Carl Sagan
28: The Handmaiden’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
29: The Thrall’s Tale by Judith Lindbergh
30: The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan & concluded by Brandon Sanderson (I know that’s 15 books thhbt.)

Bonus: right now my current favorite book on writing is Story Genius by Lisa Cron, because how can you not like this tag line: How to Use Brain Science to Go Beyond Outlining and Write a Riveting Novel (Before You Waste Three Years Writing 327 Pages That Go Nowhere)



Edited by nod1v1ng - 09 Apr 2019 at 9:58am
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