Sunday, October 10, 2010

Book Club

I've been craving new books lately. I've been reading a lot but I'm stuck in a rut and need recommendations. This is embarrassing but I'm just going to say it: I've read a lot of Amish fiction in the past sixth months. It's so interesting, but I really need to move on. Or at least take a break.

So I thought I'd come to you. What is the best book you've read this year?

I'll get the discussion started and recommend one for you. The best book I've read this year is called "The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society" by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows. To be honest I can never remember the name of it and I actually had to get it down off the book shelf to get the whole name right. I usually just call it "the potato peel book." But I figured you might need more information than that if you wanted to look it up. Plus, that makes it sound like a recipe book for potato skins.

This book is completely charming. It takes place in England in 1946 and the whole book is written in the form of correspondence being sent between a handful of lovable characters. At first I wasn't sure about that, but it totally sucked me in. It's not only an entertaining and touching book, it's also interesting in the sense that you learn a lot of history too. Check it out!

Here are some of my other all time favorite books, in case you're interested. If you're not, skip down to the comments and tell me yours! You don't have to tell me your top ten unless you want to. I'd really love to hear your favorite book so far this year and why you love it!

1. Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte (Haunting)
2. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte (Empowering)
3. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings - Maya Angelou (Inspirational)
4. My Name is Asher Lev - Chaim Potok - (Thought provoking)
5. The Bean Trees - Barbara Kingsolver (Charming)
6. A Girl Named Zippy - Haven Kimmel (Hilarious)
7. The Hiding Place - Corrie ten Boom (Faith Promoting)
8. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn - Betty Smith (Tender)
9. Coming Up For Air - George Orwell (Smart/Funny)
10. I can't choose a 10th. It makes me feel bad for the books I love that didn't make this list.

I will close with a quote from a beloved character of our time, Gaston:

"It's not right for a woman to read. Soon she starts getting ideas and thinking..."

It's too late for me in that regard. So, now it's your turn. Channel your inner Levar Burton and tell me what I should read next!


The Boob Nazi said...

I loooveeed the potato peel book!!!!!!! I read that this year as well.

Katherine said...

I'm also a huge fan of the Potato Peel book (you're welcome for the suggestion...). ;) It's so great! We have a few similar favorites - The Bean Trees, My Name Is Asher Lev (I also love The Chosen and The Promise, and several other of Chaim Potok's books), A Girl Named Zippy, and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. (I liked Wuthering Heights, Jane Eyre, and Coming Up for Air, too, but I don't know if they're in my top 10.) Others that I've loved are:
-Animal Farm by George Orwell - it's so thought provoking and shocking and lots of other adjectives I'm too tired to think of.
-Ishmael by Daniel Quinn - I'm rereading it right now and it's blowing my mind all over again! I highly recommend it. But be ready to recycle and ride your bike more...
-The Invention of Hugo Cabret - the illustrations are gorgeous, and the story pulls you right in. Based on actual events, too - it got me turned on the movies of Georges Melies. Oh, I love that book!

There are so many more that I love - Les Miserables (Hugo), the Harry Potter series (people may mock, but that J. K. Rowling is a literary genius!), The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (Agatha Christie - I love so many of her books!), etc. I really want to go reread these all now! :)

Sara said...

I still need to read A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. It's on so many people's favorites list. I'm reading a Day After Night by Anita Diamant, the author who wrote The Red Tent. I'd recommend both. Good Harbor was good too (and I've been to the real Good Harbor beach! It's lovely!).

Melanie said...

Oh Man! I love reading and getting ideas and thinking!

Here are a few good books:
Ella Minnow Pea (really quick read)
Stiff: the Curious Lives of Human Cadavers
A Thousand Splendid Suns
A Passage to India

Sui Sin Far said...

Keeper by Mal Peet. I would also really like to read Penalty, but I live on an island.

Saralyn said...

I really enjoyed reading Saving CeeCee Honeycutt by Beth Hoffman. I also LOVED reading the The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. I laugh every time I hear that name.

Anonymous said...

This year’s favorite so far….

The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis

Some of my favorites:

Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Coronación by Jose Donoso
Donde van a morir los elefantes by Jose Donoso

An admirer from the distance. ;)

Bethy{aka}lilsis said...

The only book on your list that I love is Jane Eyre (I even have it on my ipod!) but then again, my tastes are pretty low-brow lol.
My number one book is and always will be The Silver Metal Lover by Tanith Lee. My favorite short story, Mirage and Magia, is also by her.
I'm in a bit of a book rut myself and decided to check out the Encyclopaedia of Mormonism A-D. Because hey, why not? ;-)
If you like psychology books...have you ever read Goddesses in Every Woman? I have a thing for mythology and it never fails to amaze me how I can easily recognize the female archetypes in everyone I know! Who's female that is!

Bethy{aka}lilsis said...

Also, I love the pic from Beauty and the Beast! I just bought it recently since it was released from the vault- woot!

Heather said...

OK, I really don't read anything "thought provoking" or " aww inspiring" at this point in my life. I get about 8 and half minutes a day to read so I read things like Mary Higgins Clark and The Babysitters Club (j.k..but not really). Here are some of my other favorites though:
1. Rick Riordan's "Percy Jackson and the Olympians" (though i would not recommend seeing the movie if you've read the books first.)
2. Christopher Paolini's 3 book (i think son to be 4 book) series "Eragon", "Eldest" and "Brisingr"
3. Bernard Cornwell's "The Nathaniel Starbuck Chronicles" books.
4. Do Archie comics count? :)

D said...

I love a lot of the books on your list too. Love Chaim Potok and Haven Kimmel (A girl named Zippy is the best one but her sequels are decent too). Love Jane Eyre.

Seems lately I just read YA fiction...Though that's probably good because I can't seem to put a book down after I start it so at least I am done in a day. :)

One of my roomates from BYU wrote a paranormal romance inspired by the story of the Prodigal Son that's a fun read. It starts out a little bit slow but then you can't put it down. "The Dark Divine" by Bree Despain. It's better written than the twilight books but it is the same genre(not vampires though). :) The sequel comes out this December.

Before the Hunger Games Suzanne Collins wrote a series about Gregor. Very enjoyable though less intense than the Hunger Games.

My sister recommends The Maze Runner by James Dashner.

Last summer I enjoyed several of Shannon Hale's books.

mle said...

I recommend The Help by Kathryn Stockett

Sarah said...

I'm reading "A Soft Place To Land" by Susan Rebecca White and really enjoying it! :)

~ Malissa ~ said...

Pride and Prejudice is one of my favorite classics!! If you want a tear jerker that's intense, read My Sister's Keeper (but don't watch the movie version - I felt really depressed afterwards).

Michelle Williams said...

I loved your #1,2,4,5,6&7 picks too and since we have similar taste I will read the others some time soon. I read the potato book (LOL) last year and enjoyed it!

One of my all time favs is
To Kill A Mocking Bird-Harper Lee
I read it every few years, LOVE IT!

I'll read anything by Pearl Buck, but start with Peony or The Living Reed, 2 of my favs.

Willa Cather has several great books, I loved The Song Of A Lark

The Angle Of Repose- Wallace Stegner he is a wonderful author

Cold Sassy Tree- LOVED this book! Don't know the author, can't find the book

I love all of Gail Tsukiyama's books

Girl In Hyacinth Blue- Susan Vreeland

Interpreter Of Maladies- Short stories of people of India by Jumpa Lahiri

Gilead- Marilynne Robinson

The Secret Life Of Bees- Sue Monk Kidd

West With The Night- Beryl Markham

Alexandre Dumas writes fun, great adventures (Three Musketeers)

All Jane Austen

My Grandfather's Blessings- Rachel Naomi Remen, M.D.
Healing stories that touch your heart and impart such wisdom!

I love all Dick Francis mysteries

My fav book this last year was Cutting For Stone- Abraham V...something, maybe Vergeese it was GREAT!


Amy said...

You'd think with a whole book blog, I'd be able to come up with a good comment on this post. But I think the book blog is what's getting in the way, like anything I'd say would just be a repeat of something I've already said. But I love book recommendations and blog comments myself, so I'll give a few anyway. My favorites from the year so far are The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, Collected Novellas by Gabriel Garcia Marquez (unless you haven't read 100 Years of Solitude, and if you haven't you should read that), A Passage to India by E. M. Forster, and Shades of Grey by Jasper Fforde if you want something lighter but still clever and interesting and engaging and intelligent and funny.

Have fun reading!

Kelly / Raquel said...

Ok in my top book rec's:

Same Kind of Different as Me by: Ron Hall and Denver Moore

Half brooke horses by: Jeannette Walls

The lost City of Z: A tale of deadly obsession in the Amazon by: David Grann

Mao's Last dancer by: Li Cunxin

Now if you have read all of the above mentioned or they are not your bag then I have something special to offer just to you. Very few have the heart to read it. (Insert scene from the Never ending story here)

Baby of Bataan: Memoir of a 14 year Old Soldier in World War II by: Joseph Quitman Johnson

I will even mail you the copy the author inscribed and mailed to my husband.
(Insert scene from Harry Potter here)
(Now insert scene from What about Bob, just because this was getting too spooky)

Isabel said...

I just finished reading the Hunger Games, and thought it was awesome, intense, and sad. I can't wait to read the other two. It's an easy read too.