Thursday, April 11, 2013
This week the ladies at The Broke and The Bookish have asked us to share the top ten books we read before we were book bloggers. Since I've been blogging for almost four years and have read over 300 books in that time, there would certainly be some shakeups on this list. But here, in no particular order, are my top ten books from pre-May 2009.
2. Bel Canto by Ann Patchett. My favorite non-classic book prior to blogging, by far and maybe the book that pushed me to reading more literary fiction than anything else.
3. Sophie's Choice by William Styron. This might be the first book I ever read because of the movie. And maybe the first time I really was aware that as great as a movie is, the book is almost certain to be better.
4. Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen. My favorite Austen; it stands in for her entire body of work.
5. Ragtime by E. L. Doctorow. Now this one I read first and then saw the movie. It may have been one of the first times I was aware that a movie after a book might not disappoint.
6. Little Women/Little Men by Louisa May Alcott. I got Little Women when I was eight so you'll have to forgive me if I'm more than willing to overlook the preachiness. I wanted to be Jo; I knew I was more like Beth.
7. Chesapeake by James Michener. Never in a million years could you have convinced me that I would love a book that opened with an scene of Canadian geese moving south in the spring before white men ever set foot on this continent. But that's exactly where Michener hooked me on this one.
8. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. Until I read this one with my son, I might have thought my opinion about this book was colored by the wonderful memories of my dad reading it to us when we were children. But this one stands up to reading as an adult; a brilliant commentary as well as wonderful story.
9. David Cooperfield by Charles Dickens. I'm sure this one had the same drawbacks I found in Bleak House, but I don't remember them. I just remembering loving the characters.
10. The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton. Wharton is a master of writing detail into her books that you will not want to skim over; her descriptions of a dinner party tell the reader as much about society as they do about the meals.
That was a bit painful, I must say. I could easily make a list of top ten favorite childhood favorites, leaving me a couple more spots on this list and it still would be enough room for the books that I feel had the greatest impact on me as a reader pre-2009. Bloggers, what books would be on your list?