Since as far back as I can remember, I have loved to read and write, spending countless child, adolescent, and adult hours escaping through books and writing. When I was growing up, during the summer months when I wasn’t rushing off to school in the mornings, I would leisurely make my way to the lakeshore dock where our boat was tethered. Still in my pajamas, I would lie in the rocking boat, listen to the waves lap against the shoreline, face to the sun, and do nothing but daydream and write.I’ve read many amazing books thorough the years, and more than I can possibly count that transported me to some pretty memorable imaginary places. But the following are my top ten that have hugely impacted my life in one way or another.
1.) The Bible
The instruction manual for life as a whole and each moment that makes up that life.
2.) The Jane Austen Book Club by Karen Joy Fowler
After too many friendships that have broken my heart and left me wondering if real friendships even exist, this book has shown me that women with backgrounds and personalities as different as can be, not only can get along, but can teach one another, accept one another’s differences, and truly enjoy each other’s company. And it all started with a love of reading and a particular author–Jane Austen.
3.) On Writing – A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King
After an entertaining introduction to Stephen King’s life, this book is packed with timeless advice on the craft of writing.
4.) Saving CeeCee Honeycutt by Beth Hoffman
Though I read this book very recently, I have no doubt whatsoever that the vivid descriptions and loveable characters Beth Hoffman created in this amazing piece of work will stick with me forever. The Louis L’Amour of descriptive writing.
This book, written by NaNoWriMo creator Chris Baty, gave me amazing insight, motivation and tips to complete the novel of which I am in the process of revising.
6.) Praying for Strangers by River Jordan
This book helped me to see outside of myself and to pray for others, actively looking for and being aware of those God brings to me. It reinforced the concept that I am here to help others and prayer is the most powerful way to help them.
7.) The Help by Kathryn Stockett
This beautifully written book brings attention to a critical part of history that can be too comfortable not to remember. Kathryn Stockett’s memorable and loveable characters bring a dimension to the less than admirable way of how people treat people still today.
8.) Cry, the Beloved Country by Alan Paton
To tell the truth, I don’t exactly remember why this book impacted me except for the fact that a high school class in which this book was required reading, I enjoyed it so much more than everyone else that I helped many with the book report. Not surprisingly, several of us turned in very similar reports. This book is on my bookshelf and will be on my list of books to read. Again.
9.) The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks
Endless love, faithfulness and devotion. It can–and does–happen!
10.) The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
This book reinforced for me at a young age that if we insist on only living up to what others think we can be rather than stretching beyond their expectations, we will never achieve our full potential.
And on the top of the list for books I want to read:
Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield
Life of Pi by Yann Martel (I enjoyed this movie so much that I’m looking forward to reading the book)
Three Cups of Tea: One Man’s Mission to Promote Peace … One School at a Time by Greg Mortenson
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (I’m a bit embarrassed to admit I’ve never read this book–yet.)
Cry, the Beloved Country by Alan Paton (See #8 above)
If you have any others that you would like to recommend, please share what they are.
Grace to you.