I wrote this months ago and never posted it…I guess I will post it now, kinda like a b-side demo of a band…
There is a meme going around the blogosphere where different people are posting the books that have most inspired them, so I thought I would bring it here. I know we’ve had similar things like this before (in the what, however man years we’ve all been posting), but I guess it’s worth having again. What I’m really thinking is: What are the books (or any writing) that has made you the person you are today. So, obviously, I don’t mean to make a list of just Melville, Dostoevsky, Joyce, and so on. This isn’t the canon–just your own! Equally, if that’s a magazine or newspaper or something–that’s fair game!
The Bible: Yes, It’s obvious, but it has to be here. If any of you were to have a conversation with one of my relatives, within like five minutes, the Bible would be brought up as a serious topic of discussion. But, besides that, I do think there are some beautiful passages in the Bible…The creation story, the sermon on the mount, the book of Job, The Song of Songs, The Gospel of John, ect. And, of course, despite its common misuse, I do believe in the central tenets and that many of the crazy things described did happen.
The Hardy Boys Mysteries: There are like 200 or something of these books, so I lump them together. I should note–I can’t remember actually finishing any these books. But, among my friends in the 3rd and 4th grade, these books were the in thing. We used to check them from the library, and only the cool kids read the Hardy Boys. I used to check them out and pretend to read them. I suppose the Hardy Boys were one of my first realization of oppressive social hierarchies among other people.
The Way Things Ought To Be by Rush Limbaugh: I borrowed this from my Grandpa when I was like 12, which would have been 1995. It was my first true foray into political ideology. This isn’t even a good book (It’s not even truly written by Rush), but it holds a special place in my heart.
The Great Gatsby by F. S. Fitzgerald: I read this in 11th grade English. I missed a lot of the important references, but even at the time I knew it was special. This book gets a lot of hype, but it’s truly one of the best works of American literature.
The Lord of The Rings: Just truly an amazing work. Enough said. Probably one of the first times I really sat down and truly explored a book.
National Review Magazine: The only non-book. I first found National Review right before the ’04 presidential election–when the BBS was in a frenzy. National Review introduced me to a whole new world of writing and thinking. I still subscribe and religiously read the magazine.
George Orwell- Essays: One of the best fiction writers of the 20th century, was arguably the best essayist. Orwell writes with passion, and the people he profiles jump from the page.
Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh: I read this in the fall of 06, right after I had become a Catholic.