Bout of Books – Day 2

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Today’s challenge for the Bout of Books Read-A-Thon comes from one of my absolute favorite bloggers, Sarah, at Trees of Reverie and it’s a doozy!

Your Challenge – Your top 10 recommendations.  My anxieties tend to be in overdrive when asked this question.  My mind starts racing… this one, that one… oh, and that one… oh, I can’t forget this one, the classics, the new ones… Neil Gaiman, Anne Lamott, oh my gosh… Wuthering Heights (you have to)… oh and I’m reading some good YA , “Dear Lord, I can’t do this!” Let me get back to you! Whew….

Obviously, it’s quite a daunting ordeal for me, but I’ve come up with the list below:

1. Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman. I chose this book and it is number one on the list because, obviously it is my favorite book (I have not left the house without this book in my purse or in my car in years…no kidding). This is the first book I read by Mr. Gaiman and the reason I fell in love with him and his writing. Reading his books and all of his media posts has helped me to create several of my own fantasy worlds and get them down with the hopes of someday sharing them. He is an inspiration!

2. Bird by Bird by Anne Lammott. Miss Lammott is another great inspiration in my life. And this book is perfect encouragement for those of us that are writers. If someone I knew, who was a writer asked me for recommendation I would pick this book, above all others of it’s kind.  I come back to it year after year; month after month; day after day!

3. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath. I think that anytime I am recommending books I throw in something by Sylvia Plath because she shows what writing can be even in the midst of dire circumstances. Her writing speaks to me like few others do.

4. Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf.  Again, I always throw in something by Virginia Woolf whether it be her novels or her journals. I have gotten an enormous amount of my journaling inspirations from Virginia.  She’s a classic author that begs to be read!

5. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte.  I have had a lifelong love affair with the Bronte Sisters, but my favorite book, by far, is Wuthering Heights! You must read and get to know Heathcliffe! He is my favorite character of all time!

6. The Mitford Series by Jan Karon. When you’re looking for an uplifting, inspiring read, look no further than Jan Karon and the Mitford series.  I have read the entire series numerous times. Every time I have found hope and recovery in it’s pages.  I usually pick up these books again when life seems to be falling apart around me.

7. The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton – A coming of age story that truly should be read by all, even if you have already come of age; if you haven’t read it… you need to!

8. The Parasol Protectorate Series by Gail Carriger. This is where my love of Steampunk came from and Miss. Carriger’s pert characters and witty banter are sure to make anyone a fan!

9. The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls. This book! I read it in a couple hours and it is so spell-binding that I think that even if your are not a fan of biographies you would thank me for recommending this book!

10. The Witching Hour by Anne Rice. This was the first VERY long book I ever got through and have since read it another 10 times! The imagery in this book truly makes you feel like you have a taken a trip around the world! The imagery is mesmerizing!

And here are some of my other favorites:

1. The Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingslover

2. Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

3. The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis

4. The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton

5. The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd

6. Let Me Be A Woman by Elisabeth Elliot.

As the end of Day 2 of the read-a-thon nears it’s end. I have finished 2 books (a few chapters each): Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel and The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton.  I was planning on starting the Diviners by Libba Bray but I received A Street Cat Named Bob by  James Bowen in the mail today so I am starting that one.

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