Friday, January 29, 2010


Do you have a favorite book you've EVER read? One that you remember with some deep emotion, or come back to over and over? (Or am I the only re-reader around here?)

I was thinking about some of my favorites, and that there are a bunch of books I've read many times. Let's say Five times. Or more.

Les Miserables: (I don't know how to make French letter thingies on my computer, and Blogger doesn't know that "thingies" is a word. Silly Blogger.) I read this every year for the first ten years Husband and I were married.* The whole Romantic style with its overly long sentences and dramatic descriptions is hard for me to take in general, but I love this story so, so much that I'm willing to wade through it.

Pride and Prejudice: This is a favorite bathtub book. The newsprint pages of my copy are all bendy and thick from tub-induced humidity. I could read this three times a year and not get tired of it. My favorite reading ? When I read it out loud to the Kids. I did the voices. They laughed a lot. Mmmm. Happy books + happy Kids = goodness.

If Life is a Bowl of Cherries, What am I Doing in the Pits? (Do you know Erma Bombeck? If you don't, do yourself a favor and see if any of her books are at your library. Had there been blogs in the seventies, she would have been the Queen. Well, she WAS the queen, but of newspaper columns instead. Go on. Try her. You can thank me later.)

Harry: I love me some Harry Potter. And don't get all up in my grill if you hate it. Yes, there are too many adverbs in these books. Yes, nobody can just "say" anything - they have to say it "somehow" - and yes, that does bug. A little. But not enough for me not to love the books. You don't have to agree, just please be kind.

The Fountainhead: Ayn Rand could write. And spookiness - she has characters that are so convincing that they could make me rethink how I felt about something I ABSOLUTELY knew.

Walk Two Moons: Sigh. My vote for Greatest Kids' Novel Ever. I kneel before Sharon Creech and bow my forehead to the floor.

Where the Sidewalk Ends: This was my favorite book as a kid. I have my parents' copy, all loved up and a little stinky from thirty years or so of kiddish affection. It makes an appearance in RRO, along with Grandma Jennie's oatmeal butterscotch cookies (and her name).

The Very Hungry Caterpillar: Did I tell you that Kid 4 ate our copy? He really did. Bites of board book, ingested. Mmmm. I'd long since resigned myself to never being Mom of the Year. But next royalty check, I think I'll finally re-buy the Caterpillar.

The Great Quillow (by James Thurber): I have a copy of this one that's illustrated by the magnificent Stephen Kellogg. The pictures are magical, and so is the story. One part David and Goliath, one part Morality Tale, seven parts tongue-in-cheek sweet, ironic humor. LOVE.

The Book Thief: Honestly, does anyone else have to tell you to read it? Just do it if you haven't. I'm not kidding. It may change your life. And I will personally give you a dollar if it doesn't make you cry. (Next time we hang out, you read me that second-to-last chapter. If you don't produce a tear, I give you a dollar. Promise.)

This is in no way a thorough list. There are more, lots more. I even read nonfiction, occasionally. (Usually cookbooks.) But not five times. Never five times.** I want to know what you read, over and over. Or if you don't, I want to know that, too - because I might understand. There are some things that are great, once, and that greatness diminishes upon further viewing (remember Mission Impossible? I hope you only saw it once).

*We're still married. It's a weird tense thing. A time-tense thing. Not a stress-tense thing.
**Okay, except Scripture. That's not on the list, but I do read it over. And over. And I love it, too.


  1. Pride and Prejudice and the Harry Potter series both make my list. So does Ender's Game. I just don't get tired of that book for some reason. Definitely Anne of Green Gables, especially the first three. And To Kill a Mockingbird. My son's middle name is Atticus. I love that book. I even have a copy signed by Harper Lee.

  2. My all time favorite re-read is the Betsy-Tacy series by Maud Hart Lovelace

  3. *cringe* I haven't read Book Thief. Will you forgive me?

  4. Hey, Becca, You need to get on Then I can see your long, long list of books you love, think are ho-hum, or hate. Also, I love reading your posts. I can so picture you talking in my head as I read each one. (This is Tracie Schaeffer Pierce, by the way)

  5. I just purchased The Book Thief from Amazon this week! I can't wait to dive in!

  6. I already left this message but it's not on here. I just finished Allyson Condie's, "Being Sixteen" and I loved it! She did a beautiful job on that book.

  7. James and the Giant Peach. I lost count of how many times I've read it years ago. I fell in love with it in the third grade and now I read it to my own students. As far as I'm concerned, there is no better get-away than sailing across the Atlantic ocean in a giant peach inhabited by great big insects (and a very kind spider).

    I also love The Library Card by Jerry Spinelli.

    And Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing. I love Fudge...

    I don't think I have any grown-up books that I read over and over. Oh - except for A Cry in the Night by Mary Higgins Clark. I know. I hope you can still respect me.

  8. Ahhg! Caleb just read the book thief and loved it. I haven't read it yet, but it's in the pile.
    Also, craziness, I was at the Library with my Mom and a perfectly perfect copy was on their "Free" shelf by the door. Weird.

  9. It's on my to read list, I promise!

    My favourites include:

    Ender's Game, Orson Scott Card
    Anne of Green Gables, L.M. Montgomerry (the first half of the series especially)
    Good Omens, Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
    The Wee Free Men, Terry Pratchett
    The Chronicles of Narnia, C.S. Lewis
    The Host, Stephanie Meyer (don't judge - I LOVE it)
    The Little Lame Prince, Dinah Mulok
    Quentins, Maeve Binchy
    Elantris, Brandon Sanderson

    I could, of course, go on and on. But I am a re-reader to the core. In fact, if I hadn't stumbled across the LDS writing community I'm sure I'd be reading these and others over and over instead of trying new books - like your own delightful works. I tend to cling to the familiar.

  10. here's a couple that haven't made your list yet...

    1) The Princess Bride - better than the movie and a ton of fun to read (and re-read).

    2) Dave Barry - pretty much anything, but I really liked "complete guide to guys" and the Peter Pan prequel trilogy with Ridley Pearson.

    3)Vince Flynn stuff and Robert Ludlum's Bourne series (the post-Ludlum stuff isn't as good).

    PS had dinner last night with a customer and his wife pre-Jazz game. His wife mentioned that their 14-year old daughter is an avid reader and loves to go to Deseret Book and just get a bunch of books to read. We mentioned BBM and she coyly responded, "Is that the one with the toes on the cover?" (very JK Rowling of me, right, she didn't just ask, she asked coyly.) That's #2 in the queue. We mentioned RRO and she's on the lookout when it hits the shelves.

  11. So... I know I'm late with my re-reads, but I thought I'd throw them in for good measure:

    P&P - Jane Austen
    (also Persuasion and Sense & Sensibility)
    Harry Potter - J.K. Rowling
    Mandy - by Julie Edwards
    Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
    The Chronicles of Narnia - C.S. Lewis
    Number the Stars - Lois Lowry
    The Ordinary Princess - M.M. Kaye
    The Mitford Series - Jan Karon
    The Art lesson - Tomie DePaola
    Sleeping Beauty - Mercer Mayer
    Dealing With Dragons (and sequels) - Patricia C. Wrede

    I still haven't read The Book Thief either...I know, blaspheme...


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