S.G. Browne

10 Books That Have Affected Me

There’s a meme on Facebook to list 10 books that have affected or stayed with you. You’re not supposed to dwell on your answer but just list the first 10 books that come to mind that have meant something to you for one reason or another. Perhaps they inspired you. Or terrified you. Or resonated with you in some manner that is personal.

I may have done this list previously. I’m sure it varies depending on my mood, or if I’ve read anything recently that became embedded in my DNA, so here is my current list of 10 Books That Have Affected Me (in no particular order):

*      *      *

1) Lullaby by Chuck Palahniuk

2) Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut

3) Lord of the Flies by William Golding

4) St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves by Karen Russell

5) Geek Love by Katherine Dunn

6) The Stand by Stephen King

7) Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers by Mary Roach

8) The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler

9) Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

10) American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis

*      *      *

That’s my list. Feel free to share yours.

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A is for American (Psycho and Gods)

Okay. I’ve started a new blog endeavor, which is to share my favorite books I’ve read from A to Z. To be clear, I’m not saying these are the best books beginning with these letters. Just the best books I’ve read throughout my life. For the sake of argument, I’ve left out short story collections and anthologies and have stuck mostly with fiction, though one or two works of non-fiction might make it in.

I’ll include my favorite novel, then one or two runners-up and, occasionally, one novel I couldn’t stand. These will usually be classic works of literature I was forced to read in school, which I’m still happy to complain about. And I invite you to share your thoughts on my picks and your own favorite novels that begin with each letter.

So, without further delay, we’ll get on with the letter A:

And the winner is:
American Psycho, Bret Easton Ellis
A friend bought this for me years ago. I doubt I would have picked it up myself and had no idea what it was about but found it amusing, compelling, inspiring, disturbing, and impossible to stop thinking about. Great satire and social commentary, with an ending that I found ambiguously perfect.

Close but no cigar:
American Gods andAnansi Boys, Neil Gaiman
I’m not sure which one I enjoyed more, so I’ll include them both here. I loved the themes of immortality and the way Gaiman played with concepts of gods in American Gods, but found the storytelling in Anansi Boys to be more playful and engaging. Either one is well worth the time. Read them both.

What about…?
The first novel to come to mind for A was Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll but, um, well, I haven’t read it.

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Filed under: Movies and Books — Tags: , , , , — S.G. Browne @ 5:08 pm