Monday, October 1, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday: Books Not to Be Forgotten

I swear I do still exist and I am still reading. I've just been sick so I've been useless.

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme started over at The Broke and the Bookish where they give us a topic and we give out top ten.
This week it's ten older books we'd like to be remembered.

We were allowed to define 'older' in any way that we'd like. I chose books that came out pre-2000 (or series that started pre-2000).

In no particular order.

1. Howl's Moving Castle by Dianna Wynne Jones
     This may be the least likely of her books to be forgotten with the movie out and everything. But at the same time, I feel like that also makes it more likely to be forgotten because, though the movie is fantastic, it is not the book. This book plays with almost every fairy tale trope out there and, more importantly, it succeeds. It's brilliant and heart warming and clever. Everyone should read it.

2. Early Tamora Pierce
     Tamora Pierce has had such a large impact on me personally that I feel everyone should read her. I know a lot of people who have picked up books like Terrier or Trickster's Choice but never really started with The Song of the Lioness. I have always loved the older books more. They may be shorter (a source of agony for me) but they show how important pages can be, how much you can accomplish in so few pages.

3. Persuasion by Jane Austen
     I hesitated putting any Austen on my list. They seem unlikely to be forgotten. However, I do think some of her equally as wonderful books sometimes get over shadowed. Everyone fawns over Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility (my one professor in college loved Emma. Which is my least favorite) but I love Persuasion. This one says so much about being yourself and learning not to be led by others. As well as being constant. I love Persuasion and it should be a must read. Plus... THE LETTER!

4. Middlemarch by George Eliot.
     Middlemarch is probably not the first book to show how intertwined a community really is but it's the earliest one I've read and it does such a brilliant job with it. The Casual Vacancy actually reminds me of it...a lot. But this book has a little of everything and it all pulls together so nicely. I don't think it's very well known outside of literary groups but it should be. It takes some patience but it's brilliant.

5. Georgie Nicholson by Louise Rennison
     Let's take a break from the classics to turn to something more fun. And that's what these books are: fun. They're text book silly and ridiculous but they have so much heart. At their core they're about friendship and confidence, and being true to yourself. I think they are best appreciated by a younger audience but can be enjoyed by anyone. Georgie reminds me of a younger Bridget Jones. I think, especially with the diary trend in middle grade, these are easily forgotten but they shouldn't be.

6. Everworld by K.A. Applegate
     Before the Percy Jackson series there was The Everworld series. Though I would have absolutely adored the series to go on longer, it's brilliant. Applegate weaves all of these mythology sets together flawlessly. The protagonists are a little older than Percy and his crew. I love Percy Jackson but Everworld came first.

7. Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
     As important and big as I think this book as been there are still a lot of people who don't know about it. I think in literary circles it is less likely to be forgotten but it deserves to reach a bigger audience. I also think it's easy to be dismissive of it hearing the plot because there is a sea of overly sentimental stories about similar topics but none of them address serious issues in quite this way.

8. In the Forests of the Night by Amelia Atwater Rhodes
     Amelia Atwater Rhodes has a fair number of books out and I think it's easy to lose her first one. I think that's a mistake. As good as the book is I think it's important to remember that she was 13 when it written. That's the kind of story that gives young writers hope. They are creative and have brilliant ideas at any age. They don't need to go to college to be a good a writer. It's a great introductory book for the series and for the possibilities of the writing world.

9. Equus by Peter Shaffer
     I had the privilege of seeing this play on Broadway. It's not an easy play. It's not for the faint of heart. It's gritty and violent and graphic. It does so much and it doesn't shy away from what it wants to say about religion and the influence parents have on children even when they don't realize. I think we've seen an influx of international literature that covers sensitive information without touching it and dancing off but there are few that I've read that manage to be so poignant and have such an impact. I think it should be read and widely.

10. The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley
     With retelling always as big as they are there are tons of them. Mists of Avalon is such a powerful one. It reimagines and retells and completely revamps. It takes a tale traditionally full of male dominated power and turns it into a story about the power of women. It's well plotted and beautiful. I think anyone attempting a retelling should pick it up but I also think it could easily be lost in a sea of other retellings.

And what about you ducks? Which books do you think should be remembered? Why? Have you read any of these? Do you agree?



  1. I still haven't read any of Tamora Pierce's books. I should change that, huh? I definitely agree with Speak. That book is just amazing.

    My Top Ten

  2. I haven't read Howl's Moving Castle, but I did watched the movie & loved it. So good! :)

    J'adore Happy Endings

  3. Georgia Nicolson. If I want something filled with humor, I pick them up. They always manage to crack me up :p

    There are some books on your list I really want to read :)

    My TTT @thedailyprophecy

  4. I feel bad I haven't read the classics on this list, I haven't read any of these, actually. Will fix it soon.

    My TTT

  5. I confess that I have only ever read P&P by Austen. I just love it so much, and whenever I need and Austen fix, I turn to P&P. But I have heard so much of Persuasion, and the letter! I should really give it a try.

    Quinn from Quinn's Book Nook