to share my 10 books

Recently, on Facebook, a few people have been posting about their ten books that were very important to them. I started writing mine out, and then I began writing why they all mattered, and that turned into a mini-book that was too long for a status update. I had to give each book the full attention it deserved. These books mattered to me, and still do. And it is by no means a pretentious list. It won't have Margaret Atwood, or Shakespeare, but they each are important. I included a link to wikipedia on each book, except for two that aren't as popular so their links go to Paper Back Swap, maybe you'll want to read more about my mind-blowing choices. I also did not include the Bible, because it is thee most important book, and a bit of a cop out.

1. Carry on Mr Bowditch. This book was the first novel that I ever read without having to. I had a substitute for several months at the end of the school year and she was a librarian by trade and passion. She would often give us an entire hour to read after lunch. I used to fake it, I would giggle with my friends but they would eventually get settled into reading. I then had to read or else the hour would take forever to pass. I remember at one point crying while reading the book. And the bizarre thing is that this book is about navigation and the sea. I was living on the prairie, and still am, and I am a little terrified of the sea, but this book mattered to me.

2. Catcher in the Rye. I was never asked by a teacher to read this. My mom suggested it to me when I was in grade 9 or 10. She said she loved it. There were parts that I know flew over my naive head at the time. But it shaped the kind of writer I wanted to be. One that you would want to sit across from and have a coffee and a chat with.

3. Shopaholic. Every single one. Even the spin off ones. I loved these books, and I still do. I devoured them. I told you this was not a pretentious list.

4. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time. This book was so interesting. It was written from the perspective of a young man with autism. And the story telling was so unique to anything that I had ever read until that point. There were holes in the story but that was part of putting it together so beautifully. It was a game changer.

5. The Screwtape Letters. I was halfway through this book before I realized what it was about. And then I loved it. It was so interesting to have the perspectives displayed like that. It was also at the formative time of my Christian walk...which, you could argue is daily, but I read it when I was in high school. It was the summer and it flipped things upside down in my head.

6. Redeeming Love. I was home ill for the day while teaching. It was a fall day, and the sun was shining but the air was cool. I set up the hammock, dressed warm and sat in the sun. I read for 14 hours straight. I cried. A lot. And then I recommended the book to every girl I talked to after that. The cover is terribly cheesy, something harlequin, or worse because it is almost Victorian, but don't judge a book by its cover.

7. Five Finger Discount. I never read this book. Strange that I would include it on my list, right? Well, in elementary school we had to do book reports, and I was not much of a reader until #1 happened. This was before book #1. Every month a book-mobile would come to town. It was a mobile library and it was pretty neat. I would go and pick out a book and then the next month exchange it for another one. I was panicking because I hadn't read a book yet so I chose this book. I had no idea what the phrase "Five Finger Discount" referred to and the cover of the book had three kids riding bikes on it. So I made up a story about this horrible bike accident that two of the kids were in and they lost five fingers in total. One lost two, and the other lost three. And I got a good mark on this book report. I made up the entire story. It wasn't until years later that I found out that "Five Finger Discount" was a common phrase for shoplifting.

8. Life of Pi. This book was long in some parts, and it really was a hard slug until you get to the climax. I hate having to sell it though because it is a book that you put a lot of effort into and then it punches you in the stomach at the end. It is unfortunate that too many people will have seen the movie and not endured the book because your jaw just drops, to the floor, and there is no air left in your lungs.

9. Owl at Home. This is a compilation book of children's bedtime stories. There are some semi-creepy stories but they all resolve themselves nicely. Bumps in the Bed used to make my sister and I giggle, not because of the story but because of what the bumps looked like in the bed. Some of the stories were sad, Owl was a lonely bird. But this book is the first book I remember being able to read while I shared it with my siblings.

10. Oh the Places You'll Go. I know that this entry is cliché but it had to be here. It is a reminder that when we are in uncertain times we just have to keep going. The path we are on keeps going, even if a wrong turn is taken, just keep on walking. And at times in my life I've had to remind myself that it is a journey, not a destination, and that is "where I'm going", on a journey.

That's all.


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