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Book meme - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
fernwithy
fernwithy
Book meme
Snagged from kizmet_42

1. One book that changed your life?
Hmmm. So many choices. Changed it how? As a writer, I'd have to go with Carrie, because that was the first book I read as a writer with an eye to picking up technique, but I can't say it changed the way I look at the world. The Unblessed was my first real grown-up book. I guess in terms of how I see the world, Lord of the Flies probably had the most gut level impact, but I don't know that it changed the way I look at things so much as made me understand for the first time what I saw. I guess that counts.

2. One book you have read more than once?
I read almost everything more than once, unless I really loathe it. First reading is just a kind of mental sketch of the territory. Subsequent readings give depth and shading. I can't really narrow this one down.

3. One book you would want on a desert island?
A survivalist guide that would tell me what plants were poisonous and how to lash sea turtles with a rope made out of back hair. ;) Seriously, as much as I love books, my goal would be to live and find a way off the island so I could get back to the library. If I really must pick, I'd have to avoid LotF, and maybe pick something soothing, like The Black Stallion. Mostly, though, I'd be telling myself stories while trying to find stuff to make a raft.

4. One book that made you cry?
Davita's Harp.

5. One book that made you laugh?
On Writing by Stephen King. Very common-sensical approach, especially given the fact that he flatly states that writing is telepathy and he's about to do magic. Just for a taste of something that made me laugh, on vague critiques at swanky writing seminars: "In too many cases the teachers and writers in residence are nodding, smiling, and looking solemnly right along with them. It seems to occur to few of the attendees that if you have a feeling you can't describe, you might just be, I don't know, kind of like, my sense of it is, maybe in the wrong fucking class."

6. One book you wish had been written?
Er... by a particular author? 'Cause honestly, if there were a book that I was desperate to have that hadn't been written yet, I'd be gleefully jumping up and down and saying, "Woo-hoo! I could get paid!!!!" But for specific authors? I wish JKR would write the Marauder stories (except not really, because she'd Joss me. ;p) And I kind of wish that Chaim Potok had written a story where the more culturally settled Reuvan Malter meets his malcontent childhood acquaintance Davita Chandal again as an adult (not a romance, necessarily, just an interesting case of two people who should have ended up good friends and just missed the boat somewhere). Maybe Asher Lev could have been doing a portrait of her. ;p

7. One book you wish had never had been written?
A Child Called It and all of its misbegotten descendents.

8. One book you are currently reading?
This week, I read Twilight (Warriors, The New Prophecy: 5) by Erin Hunter and The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold. I should review them sometime.

9. One book you have been meaning to read?
To Kill A Mockingbird. Sheesh. I should have read it in school, I'm always saying I ought to read it, I've heard excellent things about it, and every time I randomly think about it, I'm either not at the library, or it isn't. And then I forget about it again.
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Comments
marissa_214 From: marissa_214 Date: August 28th, 2006 02:43 am (UTC) (Link)
Ooh, I really enjoyed Lovely Bones...did you like it?

This amused me because just this week I was joking with someone at a party about a book and I said, "well, it didn't change my life or anything, but I liked it", to which the guy I was talking to replied, "what book has changed your life?" I was dumbfounded for a long time because I read all the time but I couldn't answer this question. I finally decided on a period of time during which I learned to be critical of writing, which was my senior year of high school.

Anyway, sorry for being so divergent, but I enjoyed this meme!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: August 28th, 2006 02:50 am (UTC) (Link)
Ooh, I really enjoyed Lovely Bones...did you like it?

It was better than I expected it to be (I have very low expectations for any book that's that trendy). I can't say I was wowed by it, but it was enjoyable. It was like reading two totally separate books, though--one was a murder mystery from a neat point of view that I really liked, while the other was a domestic drama that was a big "meh" for me.
veryshortlist From: veryshortlist Date: August 28th, 2006 02:46 am (UTC) (Link)
Definitely read To Kill A Mockingbird. It's been a favorite of mine since I was 13.
purple_ladybug1 From: purple_ladybug1 Date: August 28th, 2006 02:47 am (UTC) (Link)
To Kill a Mockingbird is excellent. I had to read it twice for school (I just so happened to be one of the classes lost in the changing of our reading lists). I've also read it a third time for fun. Oh, and I read The Lovely Bones over spring break. It was unlike anything I've ever read.
valerie_valerah From: valerie_valerah Date: August 28th, 2006 03:04 am (UTC) (Link)
Oh, The Lovely Bones. Now that's a heavy tearjerker if ever there was one. Scared me a bit, too, but so beautifully written. I'm interested to see what you thought of it :). Also, I saw on imdb.com that Peter Jackson is making it into a movie. That should be interesting.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: August 28th, 2006 03:21 am (UTC) (Link)
With Peter Jackson directing?

Clarissa will probably become a major central character, played by a pretty movie star, and Lindsey will faint at the sight of blood.
From: (Anonymous) Date: August 28th, 2006 03:30 am (UTC) (Link)
Gasp! Someone besides me who hasn't read To Kill a Mockingbird! I'm a bookworm who skipped over that one.

A book that changed my life? The Hobbit and not for the reason you're thinking of. I'd already discovered fantasy and that reading could be fun. But, as a somewhat bullied kid, I remember how Tolkien made me feel sympathy for the orcs in the Gollum part (the dark monster in the basement where even orcs are afraid to go and who really does grab young orcs). But, after all, that just meant Gollum was worse than the orcs. Then came the riddle about eggs and Gollum's memories of living in the world above with a family (grandmother [yes, I know he tried to teach her to suck eggs, but still]). Suddenly, I felt sympathy for Gollum. Then, just in case I'd missed the point, Bilbo also felt sympathy for him and spared his life.

I know it sounds a little over the top, but reading that made me take a deep look at some of the hostility and general feeling of being wronged I was carrying around.

Mind you, I don't know what it says that seeing some of the elementary school bullies as being more like orcs and Gollum made me feel kinder towards them.
lady_moriel From: lady_moriel Date: August 28th, 2006 05:05 am (UTC) (Link)
Oh, I remember On Writing...good book. Only Stephen King book I've ever read, for that matter. He had a lot of really good things to say about writing in general, but I loved his writing style--aside from the fact that it was so foul, anyway. That I certainly could have done without.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: August 28th, 2006 05:11 am (UTC) (Link)
Yeah--he's foulmouthed. He even has a section about it, dealing with writing the words you actually use rather the ones you think people want to see, but that begs the question of actually using them that much. I use them more than I write them, but I don't use them quite that often!
ashavah From: ashavah Date: August 28th, 2006 12:48 pm (UTC) (Link)
Do read To Kill a Mockingbird. It's well up there on my list of favourite books. :-)
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