Thursday, April 8, 2010
Books books, blah blah blah
Sorry about the sudden outpouring of blog posts. Most of these are all posts I'd written a while ago and saved as drafts. Must stop procrastinating...
Anyway, we mentioned Thomas Hardy last class period, and it totally reminded me of first reading "Tess of the D'urbervilles". It was one of those books that totally floored me. I think I was 16 or 17 when I read it. Anyway, in honor of Thomas Hardy, here's a list of books that I believe have either deeply affected me or have led to my development as the twisted, backwards creature I am today ;P
Besides, we're all book lovers here, right? Hopefully this won't be too dull then.
1-"The Lorax"by Dr. Seuss. I think I read it in 2nd grade. I was floored that a children's book could be so... bleak. It's made me kind of a tree hugger/mistruster of consumerism ever since.
2-"Where the Wild Things Are"/"In The Night Kitchen"/"Peter Rabbit" and anything by Beatrix Potter-- I think I came out of the womb reading these books. I've always loved children's literature because of them. I also loved that Sendak was never imposingly moral in any of his books. Kids hate that anyway. Anything by Roald Dahl (especially "Matilda") falls into this category as well.
3-"The Giver"- I read this in 6th grade and was very, very bothered. I couldn't believe that a dystopian society like this could even be imagined. I think this book started my love for books like "The Handmaid's Tale" ,"1984" and "The Stepford Wives" as well as this suspicion of overly cheery authority figures... I dislike politicians...
4- "To Kill a Mockingbird"- Read in 5th grade I think. The first "grown-up" book I read. I was touched and traumatized by how beautiful and sad this book was. I also learned that rape, racism and just plain vindictiveness were real things. (5th grade was a weird year...) It also made me see how important and powerful love was, pure and simple. I think this might have been the first book that made me cry.
5- "Dracula"/"The Portrait of Dorian Grey"/"Jane Eyre"/"Wuthering Heights" -- I think I read these all in 9th or 10th grade. I loved them immediately. This was when I first discovered that I was a romanticist at heart. I think these books, oddly enough, got me to loosen up a bit and really enjoy life for the first time in several years. There was something strange and adventurous about them that acted as a sort of epiphany for me; like I suddenly realized that I could find happiness in strange things, if that makes sense. I don't know why I suddenly felt that way, but I did. It was a good year.
6- "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof"- I watched the movie first, but hey, plays are meant to be watched anyway. I had never been so heartbroken by any characters before this. Especially Maggie. Oh, Maggie. I still get all
7- "Hamlet"-- I read this my senior year in high school and I ate it up. The drama! The murderous villain Claudio! The wickedly witty Prince Hamlet! The crazy, heart-broken Ophelia! I swear, this is Shakespeare's most entertaining play. I still can't get enough of it.
8- "Tess of the D'urbervilles"/"Jude the Obscure"-- My 12th grade English teacher recommended these to me. Ugh, I was so upset by all of the injustices, I actually threw "Tess" across the room. "Jude" I had to stop reading and go for a nice walk to calm myself down-- that one was more disturbing than infuriating.
9- "The Catcher in the Rye"/"Franny and Zooey"/"A Perfect Day for Bananafish"-- I'd never been interested in Salinger until I was 18. It was a lonely Saturday night, I was hating my freshman year at BYU and didn't want to be around anybody. I picked up "Catcher" at the bookstore on a whim. five or six pages into it and I was in love. I think I'm always going to be a little bit in love.
There are about a million more... I'll have to continue this another day... when all of our blog posts aren't due...