Since I lost ye olde blog, I’ve also lost all my book reviews. BUT– never fear, Readers! I haven’t forgotten that many of you are on a quest for book recommendations. Below, you will find my Top Ten Books of All Time.
Now, just to clarify: These are the books that I absolutely adore and can’t stop thinking about, but you must exercise judgment over whether or not they would be right for you. I have a great talent for skimming over nastiness in books, but some of you may not. I guess what I’m trying to say here is that if you read one of these books based on my recommendation and something in it really offends you, please don’t think I’m a terrible person. It just means I skipped over it and it didn’t taint my enjoyment of the story.
SO. That being said, here are, listed in the order that they popped into my head, the Ten Books that will Change Your Life.
1. The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton. A tiny girl is abandoned on a ship bound for Australia. When she reaches the port, she is taken in by a kind dockmaster and his family… but on her eighteenth birthday, her “father” tells her the truth: that no one knows who she is or where she really belongs. She dies without ever knowing the truth, and her granddaughter takes up the search. I could not put this one down for anything!
2. Bridget Jones’s Diary by Helen Fielding. It has bad language and it can be a little smutty at times, but oh my goodness you will laugh so hard your face hurts. It’s all about Bridget Jones (as you may have figured out for yourself) and her struggle to make the most of her life as a “singleton” in London. This one is Chick Lit at its best!
3. The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audry Niffeneger. I have heard that the movie isn’t worth your time, but the book? Ooooooh man. Now, some people do not like this book at all, and you may be one of them. But if you’re like me, you’ll end up having an episode in the Moe’s parking lot because it just moved you that much. This one centers on a marriage that was, in many ways, doomed from the start – but it didn’t matter. Clare and Henry are committed and fiercely loyal to each other, even when things get ugly (and they often do, but isn’t that the reality of marriage?)
4. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas. The movie doesn’t even begin to do this book justice. If you’ve got a taste for revenge and you’ve always secretly thought it would be way fun to disguise yourself to the point that absolutely nobody recognized you, then this book is for you.
5. The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling. I don’t care who you are, you’re missing out if you haven’t read these books. Just read the first one, and then you can say you tried (although you’ll probably be too busy reading the second one by that point). It’s not for little kids and it’s not like reading Tolkien, I promise. The writing is so genius that you won’t want to do anything else once you start. Seriously. Go to the library right now and get Book 1.
6. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. For the ladies especially, this is a book you will absolutely fall in love with. It is family at its best and worst – and love that doesn’t always come in the way you expected it to.
7. Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery. I don’t even know where to start on this one… it is just so wonderful, funny, painful, and true-to-life. Anne Shirley is my own personal hero. You will love it… unless you are a guy and then you will probably hate it.
8. The Help by Kathryn Stockett. This one centers around the lives of black maids in the 1960s and the families they work for… simply fascinating. It is just so southern and the characters are so tangible. I absolutely loved this book.
9. The Twilight series by Stephenie Meyer. Okay, I really am only putting this one on here because it is such a cultural phenomenon. I don’t know that it will actually change your life, although I will say that once you start it, you better have two weeks where you can do nothing but read. I did enjoy it, and while I don’t really approve of the way she ended the story, I think it’s definitely entertaining and worth your time.
10. The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova. And while I’m talking about vampires, YOU HAVE TO READ THIS BOOK. It is so much more exciting than the title makes it sound. It is super creepy though, so don’t read it before bed. But if you are fascinated by Dracula (who, by the way, was a real person) then go to the bookstore and get this one off the clearance table, because unfortunately that’s where you’ll find it. IT IS AN AWESOME BOOK.