Sunday, January 28, 2007

more books

This exercise: one book made me think of more books that I love and have made an impact on my life, so I'm expanding the list of influential books. It's the sort of think that never will be complete, but it was interesting to see what I remember...I guess the fact that I remember reading it stands for something.

elementary years:

i loved Ramona, and all Beverly Cleary books, because I related to her, and to those dear dear children, that lived on a block, just like anyone else's block.

middle school:

Anne books
always dear, always emotive, always ridiculously dramatic, and always loveable.

high school:

Pride and Prejudice
most real characters ever.
dearest love story.
(basically anything jane austen i read through)

Jane Eyre

best moody complex characters.a story to wrap you up completely

and poetry: I got to like it in 11th grade: John Donne, especially

sophomore year:

Red China Blues
the first time I ever learned about China, and I was floored to hear about Mao's cultural revolution and Tiananmen Square. I lost that book on the way home. Wish I still had it.

Bridge to Terebithia by Katherine Paterson
i read that in a children's lit. class, and I think it was for the first time. So so good: why had I never read it before?

junior year:

books on adolesence: Reviving Ophelia and Lost Boys
that was eye opening, and tear jerking.

senior year:

The Schools We Need, And Why We Don't Have Them
that got me on a kick about nationalized feelings have subsided some.

In The Middle

which got me excited about teaching writing, but made me realize how hard it is.

in slovakia:

Most of these books are due to the Sonlight Curriculum that kept us all reading.

A Long Road From Home

first time I ever heard of the Arminean genocide.

Walk Two Moons

i remember reading this on my couch in my Slovak flat, not wanting to stop for lunch, or to do anything productive, and then just crying, because it was so good. And I had to finish it before it was time forLaurel to read it.
dear use of language.fantistic layering of stories, mystery unfolding.if I could choose to make a book into a movie, i'd chose this.

To Kill a Mockingbird
I read it for the first time in June while traveling through England with Briana and I was torn between travels through interesting and beautiful land, and a book that captivated me.
The next year, reading it again, my love was confirmed:
favorite book. best girl book made into a movie dad played on the silver screen.

teaching in atlanta:

Les Miserables
i had read this the summer between my freshman and sophmore years of college, but it didn't make nearly as much an impression as it did when I taught it fall 2004.
deep story of love, forgiveness and mercy.

Huck Finn
i've gotten to like this book more the more I read it. Huck is a funny narrator, and I love the nuances that catch you when you read it again, and again slower.
incredible language. deep insight into quotes ever.

The Hiding Place
humbling, suffering, forbearing, loving, and true to history.

God's Smuggler

knock the socks off your faith.
painting clear picture of communist bloc Europe.


Anonymous said...

fun post.
reading your and courtney's blogs is often inspiring/depressing because i'm, like, the least well-read person i know.

but i did just finish "marley and me." it's not quite on the level of, say, the brothers karamazov - it would be hard for a book about a disobedient golden retriever to achieve any literary greatness - but at least it was a book that i finished.

although i skipped over the second chapter.

Anonymous said...

i love it when my roommates post about books, because then i can pick the interesting ones to add to my reading list... yea for summer and time to read!!! okay, maybe i'm getting a little ahead of my self...

Anonymous said...

i forgot about all your blogs until just today when the day is slow! i love all those books (except maybe 5 of them), ramona is still like a childhood friend and jane eyre the subject of my senior paper. i might have to check out some of the others...