Friday, April 24, 2009

20 from the next 20

Oh man! This is seriously starting to date me. The whole fact that I can do this shows I'm getting up there. Here's a continuation from last Friday's post. 20 books that influenced me (and my writing) deeply from ages 21-40. Yep. I'm past that and counting. (Again in no particular order and excluding religious books)

1. My Name is Asher Lev by Chaim Potok
2. Anne of Green Gables (Series) by Lucy Maud Montgomery
3. Harry Potter (Series) by JK Rowling
4. The Aeneid by Publius Vergilius Maro
5. The Metamorphoses by by Publius Ovidius Naso
6. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
7. East of Eden by John Steinbeck
8. A Long Way from Chicago/A Year down Yonder by Richard Peck
9. Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse
10. Horatio Hornblower (series) by CS Forester
11. The Sackett Series by Louis L'Amour
12. Cold Sassy Tree by Olive Ann Burns
13. Persuasion by Jane Austen
14. Profiles in Courage by JFK
15. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert M. Persig
16. The Slave Dancer by Paula Fox
17. L'Etranger (The Stranger) by Albert Camus
18. La Gloire de mon Pere (My Father's Glory--series) by Marcel Pagnol
19. Rhinoceros  by Eugene Ionesco
20. Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card

It's an eclectic mix. This was a very difficult list to come up with. I've left out some incredible things that I read during that time period, because they are similar in one way or another to ones that I list. Shakespeare could be there. Poets could be there. (I may have to do a post sometime of my favorite poems.) So many things could be there. But, alas... only 20 were allowed. 

What do you think of this list? 

27 comments:

KLo said...

"Out of the Dust" was unbelievable! I was a little put off by the set-up, but once I got over myself and gave it a chance ... what a book!!!!!!!

Great list : )

Windsong said...

Even though it was hugely depressing, I loved Crime and Punishment. Anything by Austen is lovely. I remember reading (and have a copy) of Slave Dancer in elementary school. That was a very powerful book!

Justus M. Bowman said...

Is the metamorphosis the story about a beetle guy? I hated that story.

Justus M. Bowman said...

P.S. At the time, I disliked fiction and hadn't considering writing as a career or hobby.

lotusgirl said...

KLo, Out of the Dust is one of my favorite books ever! I did a review of it a while back. Mind boggling what Hesse did there.

Windsong, Yep, so powerful. That's why it earned a spot on this list.

Justus, the Metamorphoses on my list is a compilation of mythology stories sprinkled with propaganda by Ovid--one of my Latin choices. The one you're thinking about is Metamorphosis by Kafka. I really enjoyed that book too. Crazy concept!

Lady Glamis said...

Wow, there's a lot on there I haven't read! I'm impressed!!! I'm thinking I really need to pick up Asher Lev. :)

and Zen and the Art... everybody says that one rocks.

Tess said...

This is an eclectic list -- I love it. I'm that way with books and music. Why limit yourself by genre? I also loved Out of The Dust -- have your read 'The Worst Hard Time'? It's another amazing read on the same time period.

Great post!

lotusgirl said...

Glam, Yeah, you have to read Asher Lev. You would really enjoy it. Asher's struggle is riveting.

Tess, I haven't read that. I'll have to check it out. Out of the Dust is the book that introduced me to YA. What an introduction, eh? After that I couldn't get enough YA.

The Screaming Guppy said...

Have you read the rest of the Ender books? The ones about Bean are amazing:

Ender's Shadow, Shadow of the Hegemon, Shadow Puppets, Shadow of the Giant (still reading giant now!)

lotusgirl said...

I haven't read them all, but I totally love Bean! What a great character!

Captain Hook said...

You've got some great books listed, Lotus. There are 7 on there I haven't read.

*must spend more time at the library*

P.S. Dani, stop trying to brainwash the world into thinking Austen could write.

T. Anne said...

Awesome! Thanx for the list!

lotusgirl said...

Capt. I adore Austen too! So just admit that she was a genius and way before her time!

T. Anne, You're very welcome!

scott g.f. bailey said...

I only recognize half the names on this list. Some of these I read in high school (the Vergil, Ovid, L'Amour, Ionesco and Steinbeck). I read The Stranger (and The Fall) during my 20s, and "Zen and the Art of..." as well. "Crime and Punishment" in my 40s.

During this period of my life, I read a lot of Burroughs, Beckett, Shakespeare, some Dostoyevski, a lot of Gunter Grass, a lot of Nabokov, Garcia-Marquez, some Vonnegut and I don't know what else. Hemingway and Chekhov. A lot of junk I can't even remember. It alarms me that so much of those decades is now a blur. I was exposed to Bulgakov and A.S. Byatt and Cheever by friends. First exposure to Salman Rushdie. We did not get along for years, but now I'm fine with him. Austen is a recent discovery, and I quite like her. I'm also making friends with Dickens.

lotusgirl said...

Scott, I probably should have put a Shakespeare on the list, but I had put him last time and I was trying to limit the list. A lot of that time for me is a blur. That actually helped in coming up with a list of only 20 books. I only put the ones that really stood out for me. If you're enjoying Austen and Dickens, you should try Elizabeth Gaskell too (If you haven't already). She was friends with Dickens.

I'm sure the ones that you aren't recognizing are the YA books, but don't let the YA moniker fool you. They are not just for the young. Out of the Dust is powerful. I was completely captured by it. I did a review of it a while back. Or pull it up on Amazon. The slave dancer is equally moving but in a different way.

scott g.f. bailey said...

Lois, I watched "Cranford" as a mini-series on PBS, so I may try some Gaskell. I'm not put off by YA (I have a friend who reads a lot if it), I just don't know any of the authors so that section of bookstores is incomprehensible to me.

giddymomof6 said...

You rock! I love the Persusion and Anne of Green Gables books, they're awesome! LOL! And there are really a lot of books I haven't read on your list. Jenni

lotusgirl said...

Scott, I loved that mini-series. I blogged about it a few weeks ago.

Jenni, My list is a very mixed bag. I have wide ranging tastes in books. Jane Austen is a particular favorite though.

Robyn said...

Whoa, impressive list! Some I've read and some I haven't. You go girl!! :)

Rebecca Ramsey said...

Interesting list. You've given me some titles to look for...

Alexa said...

Gosh I've hardly read any of those books. I loved Persuasion though, my favourite Austen :)

I'll have to pick up a copy of Out of the Dust.

lotusgirl said...

Robyn, Thanks. It was over a 20 year period.

Becky, Hope you enjoy them.

beth said...

Yay for Ender's Game!

Pen Pen said...

'Ender's Game' and 'Persuasion' are the ones I most attribute to from ur list :) I think many people don't give as much credit to 'Persuasion' as they do 'Pride and Prejudice'---I think it's one of the very best!!!

lotusgirl said...

Beth, OSC created quite an amazing tale with that one.

Pen Pen, Persuasion is my favorite. P&P is a close second.

The Things We Carried said...

I must ask you, did you read The Chosen? I love it, by the Chaim Potok, also. Wait, I think you commented to me you are also Chaim Potok fan as me. Perhaps you could not stop at just one of his books? I read several, one after the next.

I must pick a few from your list to read!

lotusgirl said...

TTWC, Yeah. The Chosen was on my 20 under 20 list. I love Chaim Potok and have read several of his books although not all. I will do that too. If I find an author I love, I read all that they have written or until something stops me.