This list is making me think I have really random taste in books!
American Gods, Neil Gaiman
If I were to be marooned on a desert island this is the book I’d like to have with me. I feel like I notice something different about the gods every time I read it. I took a Norse mythology class in college so I love this book for the Norse gods that Gaiman makes real. I love the discussion of the old versus the new, without having it made a Christian discussion. And I love Shadow, love to watch him figure out what’s happening and how to interact with the gods as the book goes on. I actually have the updated anniversary edition of this book that I received as a Christmas gift last year, I can’t bring myself to get it out to read. its like I have to savor it and save it for just the right time. This book is also being developed into a tv show. This excites and terrifies me at once! It was originally going to be with HBO which gave me great hope, but I just read this week that Gaiman said HBO is out. He was writing the screenplay himself which should make it brilliant! (Dr. Who episodes anyone?)
Feed, Newsflesh #1, Mira Grant
I had never read a zombie book before Feed, and I don’t know that I’d go seeking another one out, but something about Feed and the Newsflesh series just grabbed me at the throat-kind of like a hungry zombie might! I love the strong women that Grant writes (and in her October Day series as Seanan Maguire) and the snappy dialog that moves the stories along. I think this series captivates me because its not really about the zombies. The story is about defining the press, access to information and politics in a very different USA. Its also about bravery, friendship and selflessness in the end. Oh the end– I won’t spoil it you should read it!
The Eyre Affair, and all Thursday Next books, Jasper Fforde
I love this book. I would much rather sit down with a book than the television, and if I’m in an off mood, this book always perks me up. Its bizarre, completely bizarre. Dodos have been resequenced and ducks are extinct. There’s a tariff on cheese-can you imagine the horror! But Thursday gains the ability to enter Jane Eyre and so finds out all about the Book World. What fun -and terror- that could bring! You could go to Hogwarts or Longbourn or meet Sherlock Holmes (well actually if you’ve read Fforde you know you can’t meet Holmes). Thankfully my sister, my husband and my mom have all given in to read these, so I can throw out Thursday Next jokes to crack myself up-and even if they aren’t as amused as I am, they at least don’t think I’m ready for admission to the psych ward.
The Magicians, Lev Grossman
Clearly I have a thing for books about books. The Magicians takes Thursday Next’s ability to enter books to the next level. The story is kind of an adult Harry Potter-magical education with sex, dark adult drama and lots of wine. Quentin is feeling somewhat lost after finishing his magical education when he finds out that Fillory, the lands in his favorite childhood books, is actually real. He also learns Fillory is not only what he’s imagined it to be. The sequel is also fantastic and I’m anxiously awaiting the Magicians Land hopefully next year.
Pride & Prejudice, Jane Austen
It is a truth universally acknowledged… My love for this book goes back to the same Brother Ruhl that taught us about Chehkov’s rule of the gun on the wall. If my memory is right–and as I’m getting old it’s possible that I’m wrong! But I think this was the first book that Brother Ruhl taught me to read, to really get down to the details and I’ve loved it ever since. The is another book I read usually once a year-and I’m always happy to watch Colin Firth and the BBC version! I also find it hilarious to contemplate the slew of books inspired by Pride and Prejudice. I’m really looking forward to reading Longbourn, I enjoyed Price and Prejudice and Zombies, and rolled my eyes and laughed through Jane Bites Back-when Jane Austen has been made into a vampire. I can’t bring myself to read any “sequel” that has come out in recent years. I really don’t want to read anyone’s interpretation of what Elizabeth and Darcy might do or how they might act. Austen left the story at the perfect time for me.