Favorite Books

Got a Favorite Book?
Let’s Talk.

If you enjoy reading books, you must have a favorite, or possibly a number of them. If so, what are they, and what helped with your decision?

There are as many reasons for choosing as there are personalities and intellects out there. It’s the why in this scenario that heightens the interest. So we did an informal survey and online research check. Among those in this group, one chose the James Bond novels, written by that classy English gentleman, Ian Fleming. First appearing in the late 1950’s, the escapades of Fleming’s mysterious British agent were spread out over a dozen novels.

When asked why, our reader said he was fascinated with Fleming’s description of Agent 007— “humanizing him” in sections. It took three books, but eventually he identified Bond’s height (183 cm—6 feet,) and weight (12 stone—168 lbs.) Our reader also advised everyone to “read them in order” for the full story-telling effect. (The first in the series was Casino Royale.) Good choices all, since most every book became a movie, and a dynasty was born.

Other choices generally coincide with the times, but some have remained popular over decades. One frequent pick is J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye. Published in 1951, much of its popularity longevity is due to its coming-of-age theme. A more recent choice is the works of Eric Larson, especially In the Garden of Beasts and The Devil in the White City. Non-fiction with drama heightened by closer looks, Larson’s creations have turned out to be on-going winners.

Compiling favorites is a fun exercise, but just having a book in your hand can be the ultimate experience. Words open our minds: Pouring over them in an exciting book is not only fun, it’s a gateway for learning.

Sadly, not everyone believes. Though today’s world boasts more readers than in any time in history, many think literature is not that important. They underestimate its abilities to stand the test of time. There’s a stigma that implies that one more inclined toward science and math will be more successful in life. Lovers of literature are likely destined to a life of low-paying jobs and unsatisfying careers, they say.

This just isn’t true. And we’ll offer some answers in Part II of this little discussion.

Stay tuned.