Monday, November 5

Nablopomo: Day Five

Some of you may have noticed that the first five days of Nablopomo got posted at once. Yes, I cheated. But only because I was reading a book SO GOOD that I could not possibly put it down to blog. One of my favorite books in the world is Ken Follett's The Pillars of the Earth, and this month a sequel was released! Twenty years later! World Without End was so delicious that I just wanted to lick it up and down until the pages were soggy...all 1014 of them. I highly recommend it. If medieval historical fiction involving lots of evil noblemen, corrupt priests, and horny nuns is your thing, you should definitely pick it up. In the spirit of this recommendation, I thought I would use today's post to present you with a list of my top ten favorite books of all time. In no particular order:

The Lord of the Rings: Obviously. I read The Hobbit for the first time when I was in the third grade, and it totally rocked my world. The Lord of the Rings followed in the fourth grade, and I am not exaggerating when I say that it influenced my life. It could be argued that these books are why I became a literature major. If you haven't read these books, well, you are incomplete.

The Stand: Not only Stephen King's best work, but also a great work of literature. I know such things should not be said about King, especially by a scholar like myself, but I think this book will stand the test of time as one of the 20th century's great books.

The Pillars of the Earth: This book centers around the building of a cathedral in medieval England. Sounds boring, I know, but it is so addicting you'll want to liquify it and inject it into your veins directly. Warning, this book contains lots of graphic violence and sex...not for the queasy.

Prince of Tides: If you have only ever seen the piece-of-crap movie starring the ridiculously mis-cast Barbara Streisand, you must read this book. It is SO much better than the movie! If you haven't seen the movie--don't. You'll only waste time you could have spent reading the book. I made my mom read this book last year, and she said, "I love this book so much I wish it would just go on forever and I would never have to read another book."

Ahab's Wife: A gorgeous novel that tells the story of Ahab's mysterious wife who is only given one paragraph in the whole of Moby Dick. Not an easy read, but a worthwhile one. So passionate!

Alice in Wonderland/Through the Looking Glass: This book probably began my obsession with British culture and my obsession with fantasy. I have loved it for as long as I can remember, and it is one of those rare books that is just as great when you read it as an adult.

Into Thin Air: Sometimes truth is better than fiction. This book is so exciting and tragic that it reads like a novel, and then the fact that what you're reading is a true story sinks in and takes your breath away.

The Belgariad: Kind of like Lord of the Rings Jr., this series of books is the story about a boy who finds he is descended from great wizards. (What do they say about there being no original stories?) These books are just a lot of fun.

Anne of Green Gables: On the required reading list for every girl, and still one of my favorite books. Anne is one of literature's great heroines.

Mists of Avalon: This Arthurian epic wakes up the feminist in you and feeds it well. An intriguing book about the women of the legends of King Arthur. I adore anything Arthurian, anyways, but this book is my favorite.

I'm sure there are many books I have missed--I kind of threw this list together with the first ten books that sprang to mind. The astute amongst you may notice that most of my favorite books fall under the "bestseller" category rather than the "classics" category. I'm sure that a literature scholar should come up with a far more sophisticated range of favorite books, but the truth is, the books I love the most are the ones I can lose myself in, not the ones that make me think. There are lots of classics I adore, though, such as Moby Dick, Beowulf, Lady Chatterley's Lover, The Fountainhead, To Kill a Mockingbird, Heart of Darkness, Fahrenheit 451, and Love in the Time of Cholera. Damnit, let's just say that I can't possibly narrow it down to ten, or that I should have several different lists...but all the above books are really, REALLY good!


BellWookie said...

love Mists of Avalon & The Belgariad (and its sequels). Am now off to pu the Follett books on my amazon must read list. :)

Mrs. Hewson said...

So funny! I just re-read two of those books and am reading Follet's first right now (at your recommendation, of course!). And remember how we met?

The Keenans said...
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The Keenans said...

Two hours ago I finished Pillars (LOVED it), found out there is a sequel (ordered it immediately), decided to check in on some blogs I haven't read recently, only to find you have recommended these books! I can't wait to read World Without End!
(Mere's friend)