There are lists, thousands of them I am sure, where people talk about their favorite books. The books that changed their lives, and so on and so forth.
I am sure this is going to be fairly similar, but recently I’ve been thinking about the books that have stayed with me for years. After reading them, they never really left. They found in my head a nice little sea cottage and sat down for ages, and for some of these books its been years.
Book 1: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader By C.S. Lewis
My father read me and my brother books when we were younger before we went to bed. I remember Peter Rabbit was one of my favorites, and I remember we went through the whole Narnia series, perhaps more than once, but I remember being fascinated by the Dawn Treader. The Dragon boat, King Caspian, and of course Eustace. You just knew he was going to be trouble with a name like that. But the part of the book that stuck with me, even the 20 some years after I sat next to my father as he read the book to me, was the land where dreams come true. Even to this day I sometimes sit there and think about what this land would look like for me.
The Sign of Four- Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
I had the whole set. I still do for that matter. Of all Holmes’s books. But this one keeps coming back to me as I get older. The discussion of the seven percent solution (cocaine, its a hell of a drug) was I think my first look at drugs and drug users. And the locked room mystery (he couldnt have gone out the door, or the window so…??) have stuck with me through economic classes, summer camps, and even learning Russian (dont ask, it came to my head during PC language training when learning about rooms and doors and someone enters someone exits).
Myst: The Book of Atrus
I never read the others in the series, and I never felt the need. I remember I picked up the book because I liked how the book felt, and how the picture on the inside cover showed through. The book was a bit disturbing to be honest. I read it after getting kneed in the eye and throwing up all over the place, and having to stay home from school because of it. But the part that stuck with me was the description of the first world that is created. Everytime I go hiking I think of parts of this book. The description of a waterfall that falls through the center of the earth to come out the other end… I still imagine it to this day. It was also the first book that hit me that I might want to try and do this later in life, write.
How to Be A Spy
I have no idea who wrote this, or even when. I do remember where it was located in my elementary school library though. I remember it was red, and the cover was really thick. I remember the crazy pictures inside with the hilarious (now) pictures of people who where spies. And I remember reading it alone, and with friends. Learning how to write secret messages, make sure you aren’t being followed, and how to walk quietly. But today the parts that stick with me are the secret messages using leaves. If you poke the steam through the leaf what does it mean, if you leave it by the rock instead of on it what it means (meeting is cancelled incidently).
The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck
This was the first book I read that was over 300 pages. It was big, and the teacher I read it for was thought of as insane, but now that I look back she was quite sane, just had an exact way of getting kids to be able to do certain things that we don’t normally do in our generation. Maybe its because I travel so much now, and to be honest this is the book that started this post, but this book keeps coming up. When people are talking about feeling like foreigners in their own land. When I get into conversations about marriage, children, or even the elderly I keep thinking about this book.
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
To me its the glass shop on top of the hill, and the original dream that keep coming back and that have stuck. I keep thinking of them where ever I am. The two images and the surrounding parts of the book sit in my head and come out whenever I walk up a hill with a store at the top, or I sleep outside, or when I am in Egypt.
These books for different reasons have stuck with me. Other books are my favorites, and actually none of the books mentioned in this list fall on my favorites, now or ever, but pieces of them have stuck with me and effect the way I talk with people, I act while I’m bored, or in one instance, what I ended up studying in college.