Post by Cynthia Light Brown
This month we're posting about love and things we love, in case you hadn't noticed. Here's a list of some books I LOVE. It's eclectic, as any half-decent list of books is. It's not complete; if I made a list tomorrow I'm sure I'd add a whole bunch more. And it's in no particular order.
Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Brown and Dave King.
This book is so practical and so on-the-money. Use it. Love it.
The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher.
Dresden fascinates me as a character - he is hands-down a "good" guy, yet he is capable of doing awful things. And the Michael character is equally fascinating because of the way Butcher creates him as a wholly good, religious person and completely believable. Truly good characters are the hardest to create. I also love Butcher's Alera series.
The Father Christmas Letters by J.R.R. Tolkien
and The Hobbit
and Lord of the Rings. I received The Hobbit as a gift in high school and was astounded and in love. Moved on to Lord of the Rings which further astounded me. If you love fantasy, you probably love these - and for me, The Hobbit no less than LOTR. It is not as involved of course, but it has a charm all its own. You can see that charm in a different and wonderful way in The Father Christmas Letters which is a collection of letters Tolkien wrote to his children every Christmas. Can you imagine being a small Tolkien receiving those? It inspired me to write letters to my own children when they were young from Father Christmas - even with illustrations.
Anything by Jane Austen. Especially Pride and Prejudice.
Her writing is amazing; the narrator is wonderful. I think I may not be the first person to notice this. And the BBC mini-series is as good as a movie version could possibly be (infinitely better than other dreadful movie versions). Austen's secondary characters are delicious. Who could desire a better character than Mister Collins?
The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis.
All of the Narnia books of course. They give me hope. I put this one in simply because of Puddleglum. I do love Puddleglum. And Lewis' other fiction - including the much less well known, but wonderful Till We Have Faces. Lewis' nonfiction is another love of mine.
The Seal of Solomon by Rick Yancey.
When Alfred Kropp falls from the Devil Paimon, falls, falls, and then finally hears the voice of Saint Michael, "Speak, my beloved, and I will give thee words." I wonder if Yancey has heard those exact words.
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling.
So many fun characters. I'm a sucker for good vs. evil. The third book has a great twist, and I love twists.
The Attolia series by Meghan Whalen Turner.
Lots of great twists. And such surprising relationships. They walk right up to the edge of not-to-be-believed...but you believe them. And love them.
Geology. I love geology. You can hold a rock in your hand - even just a pebble, and it has contained within it the story of the ages. I got a B.A. and M.S. in geology (the M.S. when I was pregnant with my second - that's how much I love it). So now I'm writing a series on the geology of our country, for kids. It's not dumbed down; if you want the latest research on theories of how and why the Columbia River Flood Basalts formed, it's right there in Geology of the Pacific Northwest by yours truly, coming May 2011, with 3 others to follow. Maybe you'll come to love geology too.