15 Books that Inspire Me

This started as a facebook game that I did this summer..but I just read my list and I’d like to keep a more permanent record of it. The rules were to come up with fifteen titles that “will always stick with you”.  (I tried putting links on the books to Worldcat, but it wasn’t working…. I’ll try again later.)  So in no particular order:

1. Anne of Green Gables by LM Montgomery. This is the first book I read that made me feel like reading mattered, that reading can take you places.  I contend that I’m a librarian because of these stories.  My mom forced me to read this title the summer of my eighth grade. I resisted and my sister read it and told me I should read it.  There is a passage in The Novel by James Michener that talks about loving Anne’s story and understanding that books can take you places in your mind.  Anne and I are kindred spirits.

2. Rebecca by Daphe DuMaurier. I read this in high school and soaked it up. I read it and re-read it. It was a book that helped me understand that text can really bring out emotion in a way that movies can’t. I poured over the romantic parts more than anything else.  The movie doesn’t do it justice.

3. Persuasion by Jane Austen. I read this at a time in my life that I had been burned by love and was feeling mousy and unloved. This is my favorite Austen novel, the other one is…

4. Emma by Jane Austen. My first Jane Austen book. It brought me to a new place in a world I enjoyed very much.

5. For Better, For Worse by Carol Matthews, 2002. A fun little chick lit book about a woman from england coming to NY for a wedding. I read it 2 years before I met my husband. It’s light and fluffy and funny and silly, with one section that really gave me hope: life is worth living to the fullest even if it means getting hurt.

6. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone The beginning of the story; a whole new world. It still makes me happy.

7. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Love is stronger than death.

8. Bible …speaking of Love conquering death

9. Disappointment with God My pain matters to God… and how I respond to it. I can worry and act on my own or I can turn to Him.

10. Love’s Something something Gosh i wish i could remember the name of this book. Christian fiction published by Bethany House in the mid 80’s about forgiveness and living in the time of Wesley. And of course it was a romance. I thought I kept the copy i have of it, but I can’t find it.

11. Passion and Purity by Elisabeth Elliot When I was a young woman and trying to discover who God wanted me to be. I read this. The sub-title is Learning to Bring Your Love Life Under Christ’s Control… as I didn’t have a love life I was trying to reconcile my wants/desires with reality.

12. A Chance to Die by Elisabeth Elliot The biography of English missionary Amy Carmichael. She dedicated her life to living with orphans of India.

13. Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Skit Skat Doodle Dot Flip Flop Flee, there are very few books I’ve actually memorized.

14. The Eight by Katherine Neville. A confusing mix of french revolution and the 1970’s but a big puzzle. Dan Brown wishes he wrote a book as good as this.

15. Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney. If I can live my life like Alice Rumphius, then I’ll be a blessed lady.

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About SH

I'm a children's librarian in the western suburbs of Chicago. I've been involved with children's literature since working in a children's bookstore in 1990.
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