Mary over at A Writer of History leveled an impressive challenge at me: to select my 5 favourite books and write about them. I’m an obsessive lover of many books and series so this was definitely a tough one – do you go with the old classics that moved me in my youth, or brand new sparkling gems? Clearly I’m not letting graphic novels of any kind onto this list because then it would be utterly impossible to limit myself to five. This was hard enough a task.
After much deliberation I selected the following:
First Test by Tamora Pierce. Really I’d like to say all Tamora Pierce’s books. I think if I ever met her in person I would turn into a quivering mush of goo incapable of human speech, but I’d still try to tell her I love all her books and think she’s awesome and she’d probably nod and smile in that ‘ok,next in-line please’ kind of way.
This series in particular is my favourite. I adored the protagonist, loved the references to a mirror culture of the Japanese one, enjoyed following a lady knight through her training in Tortall for a second time even moreso than the first.
Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones. I must admit, I hadn’t read this book until I saw the Studio Ghibli rendition of the movie. Readers will be pleasantly surprised to discover that the book and movie deviate – both in wonderful ways – I consider neither a disappointment to the other. You just can’t beat the way Jones uses myth and magic in unusual ways.
Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett. I’d read a few Terry Pratchett in my later teen years thanks to the televisation of Soul Music and Wyrd Sisters (prior to that teenage me had been too put off by the covers to read them – though now I love the Kidby covers) but at the time I had never heard of Neil Gaiman. After this book I promptly fell in love. The book is so clever – both definitions of clever, witty and smart. And everybody loves an angel and a demon working together to avert the apocalypse. This book is also the reason I have a penchant for the word anathema.
The Wild Girl by Kate forsyth. This book is a new member of my favourites list. A beautiful blend of fairy-tales, historical romance and gritty realism interwoven with a touch of magic. Very hard to resist. I just posted my review on Goodreads for anyone interested.
Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden. Being the raging Japanophile that I am no one should be too surprised to see this on my list. The tale absolutely enchanted me when I first read it (though I have to confess I haven’t read it again recently). The cultural information is amazing and who doesn’t want to ‘see beyond the curtain’?
When I was in Japan I actually hunted down the bridge on which Chiyo(Sayuri) first met the Chairman, but for some crazy reason seem to have taken more photos of the view from the bridge than the bridge itself.
I’m supposed to tag people to list their five favourite books on their blogs, but we all know I’m too lazy for that, so anyone who wants to try this on their blog, please do – you can say I tagged you ;p