My Top Ten Best Reads and Hanna

Hi, y’all.  It’s starting to look like Hanna will be paying me a visit this weekend.  My nephew will be bummed.  No excuse to stay home from school.  Well, no good excuse, anyway.  🙂

I’m sorry I haven’t posted anything scrappy in the last few days.  I have a few ideas, playing around with some stuff, but nothing complete.  Maybe next week, if Ike lets me.  That’s right, not only do we have Hanna, we have Ike, and Josephine.  Well, hurricane season peaks next week, so, all we can do is get our hurricane kits ready, gas up the car, and cross our fingers.

On a different, to me happier, note, there’s been a discussion going on at BookCrazy (you have to join to read the boards, sorry) about your ten best reads.  It started out as books, but I don’t see why they all had to be books.  Hence, my top two are short stories:

  1. “Metamorphosis” by Franz Kafka- I have a vicious hatred of  cockroaches, but Kafka made me cry when this one was killed.  This is  definitely the best thing I have ever read, though I have no intention of reading it again.  I had nightmares for about a week afterward involving sofa sized  bugs!   Ewwwwwwwwww.
  2. “The Tell-Tale Heart” by Edgar Alan Poe – Without doubt, this is the  creepiest read I’ve ever had.  King can be our right scary, but no one does skin-crawling creepy like Poe.
  3. White Fang by Jack London – Especially the first part of the  books, where the two men are trying to escape the starving wolf pack.  Even  when you are warm and toasty, with a cup of chocolate and cat on your lap, you can’t help but shiver.  I know that Call of the Wild is technically a better book, but White Fang has always been the one that calls to me.
  4. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas – I’ve always loved this book.  It is especially good when you are frustrated and angry.  Just reading about how the bad guys got theirs is a great stress reliever.  But, just the story is wonderful.  Even my eighteen-year-old niece and my sixteen-year-old nephew love this book.
  5. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini – This book blew me away when I read it last year.  I cried in at least three places that I can remember, probably more.  I was so sad, yet so happy, when Mariam was killed.  If that makes no sense to you, then you probably haven’t read the book, and you should.
  6. The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton – The first time I read this, I was in the eighth grade.  It was an assignment, but I read it within a day, it was so good.  Because Hinton was a teenager herself when she wrote most of  her books, they can’t help but speak to that age group.
  7. The Education of Little Tree by Forrest Carter – Another school assignment, this time in my senior year of high school.  This book was wonderfully funny, and beautifully touching.  I found it very difficult to believe that the guy who wrote this wonderful story was the same guy who wrote Josey Wales (always hated that movie, too), and speeches for George Wallace.
  8. Elizabeth the Great by Elizabeth Jenkins – This book started me on my love affair with Tudor, even English, history.  The first time I read this was when I was ten or eleven, stealing my sister’s copy.  After reading about Elizabeth, I had to find something about her mother, then  everybody else, going further and further back in time.
  9. The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley – Like Elizabeth the  Great, The Mists of Avalon started me on a love of history, this time Arthurian, what’s called the sub-Roman period.  I’ve read this book about five or six times since I was thirteen, I think.  Since reading this for the first time, I’ve read all of the sequels and the prequels, plus several other Arthurian series like those by Cornwell, Lawhead, and Whyte.
  10. Battlefield Earth by L. Ron Hubbard – No, I am not a  Scientologist.  No where near it, but I still love this book.  I’m not big on sci-fi (with a few exceptions), but I read this book at about once a year.  There are some parts, like all that crap about Psychlo math, that I don’t particularly like (or understand the purpose of other than as a meaningless vehicle to tell us more of Psychlo “culture”, for lack of a better term).  Anyway, I love the complex story, though why anyone thought they could compress this book to make even a descent movie is beyond me.

If it were a top 12 list, I would probably add Pride and Prejudice and The Great Gatsby, both of which I love.

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