A Few of My Favorite Books

First of all, thank you so much for the retweets, Facebook shares, and mentions from everyone on my last post. Because of your enthusiasm, my blog traffic quadrupled in size in only one day, and for that I’m grateful. You guys rock!

Now…on to other things.

Two blog posts ago, I said we were gonna talk books. But before we get to the serious subject of reading (because unlike most of the rest of life, I take reading very seriously. Take, for example, Captain Underpants. He can totally provide important life lessons. Like, you should always make friends with your toilet, because you never know when it might morph into a teeth-bearing villain and rise up to fight against you). Anyway, before we move on to books, I have a secret to share.

I love junk food.

Pull your jaw off the floor. Take your hand off your chest. I know it comes as a major shock. But that’s not the real secret. This is: I don’t eat it nearly as much as it might seem. On a normal day I might have a little, but mostly I stick to fruit and other nasty, healthy things. Like chicken. Or fruit. But overall, my diet is boring. And boring is blah. And nobody wants to hear about the awesome blueberries I bought last week. Or the super-exciting salad I ate yesterday. Because salad isn’t fun. It’s all good for you and stuff. And in my opinion, good for you equals boring. And if I could eat chocolate every hour of every day, I would. So I talk about junk food when I eat it, which really isn’t all that often. But since I love Milk Duds and Hershey bars and almost anything else unhealthy, I devote as many references to them as I can. That way, I get to look back at each post as a sort of a food diary. And why am I bringing this up in the first place?

I dunno. Maybe because diaries are like books. And books are what we’re gonna talk about. And this was the only way I could think to make the transition.

So.

I love books. Almost all of them. Exactly NEVER is how often you’ll find me NOT reading one. So over the years I’ve developed some favorites. (And I’m not including The Bible, because that totally feels like cheating to me. Of course it’s the best book out there, since God wrote the thing). So, excluding The Bible, here are my favorites, in no particular order:

Amy’s Favorite Books in No Particular Order:

1. Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers. Y’all, this book is awesome. Perfect from beginning to end. Now, the main character is a prostitute named Angel—which might sound a little weird at first. But the book is based on the Biblical book of Hosea, and in that book one of the main characters is also a prostitute, so it stands to reason that if you’re gonna re-tell a book from the Bible, you’d better darn well get it factually correct. But what makes this book great is the main male character, a majorly self-sacrificing man named Michael. Basically, God tells Michael to marry Angel (remember, she’s a prostitute), and he obeys. Even though he doesn’t want to. Even though he resents it. But because God commanded him to, he learns to love his wife with a devotion that can only be called holy. Even though she cheats. Even though she runs away. Even though she repeats that pattern over and over and over. He takes her back. Loves her more. Goes after her when she runs away again, and loves her in spite of it. Because Michael is pretty much perfect. And in the end, this book will do one (or all) of three things for you: a. Demonstrate God’s all-encompassing, never-failing love for you, b. make you learn (if you’re married) to love your spouse more, or c. make you glare hot daggers in your spouse’s direction because why can’t he be more like Michael? After all, he kept forgiving his wife for major inflictions—I mean, she was a cheating, constantly-running-away hooker, for heaven’s sake! So what’s the big deal if you keep forgetting to pick up the dry cleaning??

2. Brave New World by Aldus Huxley. A total one-eighty from the previous book, this novel is all about emotionless people who were created in sterile laboratories, who are pre-programmed to have recreational sex and ingest drugs on a regular basis, and who are created with no will to think for themselves. Except for one guy, of course. Because there’s always one guy who somehow manages to escape the norm and wreck all kinds of havoc on society. Seriously—can’t men just stick to the program? Anyway, sounds fun, right? Well, I was forced to read this book in high school, and I totally resented the assignment. But I found myself liking it. And then I found myself more than liking it. So I re-read in college. Wrote a report on it. Got an A—woo! And then I read it again a few years ago. And the idea that people could be programmed to exist as little more than walking machines stayed with me. I really hope this never happens in today’s world. Because I cannot handle recreational drugs. Anything more than the occasional Tylenol PM totally weirds me out. I discovered this sobering fact the last time my doctor prescribed an antibiotic. Totally. Fuh-reaky.

3. A Walk To Remember by Nicholas Sparks. This book is simple. This book probably never won any awards (However—I never checked. Maybe it won a Pulitzer, but I doubt it), but it’s good. It’s short. I could read it in a single afternoon. And I have, twice. But of all the books Mr. Sparks has written, this one is totally worth the read. This one stays with you. And this one is another example of my love for guy-loves-girl-despite-her-flaws books. I’m a sucker for ‘em.

*note: This book was made into a movie, but the two are nothing alike. And while the movie was pretty good, only the book was a favorite. So if you’re not familiar with either one, stick to the book. It’s sooo much better.

4. Suzanne’s Diary for Nicholas by James Patterson. You’ll have to read this one to find out why it’s a favorite. From beginning to end. And that’s all I’ll say.

5. Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White. Okay, so this one felt a little like cheating. Because isn’t this book on everyone’s favorite list? But really, after I read this when I was little, I could never look at spiders the same way. What if they really did talk? And how come the spiders in my back yard never left cool messages in their webs for me? Because there were days when I could have used a note like, “Clean Rooms are Unnecessary” or “Ice Cream is Fine for Breakfast.” But nothing ever showed up. And my mother kept demanding I clean my room and put the ice cream away. And both things were totally unfair.

*another note: I’m over the spider thing now. Now, if they come in my home, I’m no longer looking for a message, I’m looking for a can of Raid. And on a similar note, I also like bacon. Sorry Wilbur.

6. In All Deep Places by Susan Meissner. Because I love her writing style. Because I love stories that explore the things that might’ve been. Because I love anything that takes me back to childhood—that makes me think “What if I had made this decision? Or that one? Or what if I’d been nicer to that girl? Or stood up for that boy?” This book does all those things and more.

7. Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume. I’ve probably read this book, like, a hundred times. And all but one of those times before age thirteen (my daughter read it last year, so of course I had to read it again. In the name of being a good mom and stuff). Like Margaret, I, too was in a PTS club. And I, too, (as an elementary school kid) was obsessed with…well, the same thing Margaret is obsessed with. You’ll have to read the book if you wanna know, because I just can’t bring myself to type it here. But let me say this: All that obsessing was a big, fat waste of time. Women, raise your hand if you agree.

And that about wraps it up. One, because I can’t think of anymore. And two, because this post is getting a little long. For anyone who isn’t currently drooling onto their pillow, thanks for sticking with me.

And speaking of sticking—I’m gonna go eat some Milk Duds. For breakfast. Because my mom isn’t here to stop me, and because all this healthy crap is totally getting on my nerves.

Happy Friday!

Amy

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. First, my mantra in life is: If it’s not chocolate, it’s not worth it. And, second, I love Redeeming Love – it is at the top of my favorites list. Great choice! 🙂 My other favorite would include the Betsy-Tacy Series by Maud Hart Lovelace. It’s along the Little House on the Prairie idea (the writer recalls her childhood at the turn of the twentieth century) – but it isn’t anything like LH. I’ve read the series many, many times and they are excellent.

    I hope you’re not still picking caramel out of your teeth from breakfast…

  2. We have the same mantra!!I’ve never read the Besty-Tracy series. My have to try those this summer!

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