Thursday, October 8, 2009

All Good Books.

A dear friend gave me this book list when I was 19. It has had greater influence on me and the way I see the world than any other single sheet of paper. It was by its recommendation that I mustered enough literary courage/stamina to tackle Dostoevsky and Tolstoy, and that I was first introduced to Saint-Exupery's Little Prince, as well as nearly every other book I have loved the most in my life. Thank you, Chris Wallace.

I will be grateful forever.


ingrid lola nilsson said...

cool!! what a great list! did you read the herman wouk ones? i'd be interested to hear someone else's opinion on them because i'm not too thrilled with his writing ...

Rachel said...

Rach, Rachie, Rachel,

Since 1998 I have had a quote from Saint Exupery on my wall (among several other quotes): "Life has taught us that love does not consist of staring at each other, but in looking outward together in the same direction."

Rach, Rachie, Rachel

Rachel. said...

Ingrid, I haven't read those ones yet. I think I read something like 22 books on the list, and now that I found it again I want to read the rest. If/when I get to Wouk we will definitely talk about it.

Rach, Rachie, Rachel. I like our names. As always. And that is a good quote.

chris said...

Thanks Rachel, you speak kind words. As my life changes, I would probably take some books off the list, and add others. I might erase some stars and add stars to those without. But as I look at the list, I am reminded of my wonderful undergrad years.

I think the Winnie the Pooh Books should be Starred and put at the top of the list. But I'm probably biased now that I have a son. :)

Ingrid: Nice to meet you. These are books I would probably take off and replace. I agree about Wouk's writing to some extent, I was hugely disappointing with his last book "A Hole in Texas." The Winds of War series are to WWII like The Work and the Glory Series are to Mormon history. They are mainly candy. But Wouk's work is well researched, and I like to recommend the series because it covers WWII so expansively that it's hard to read with out being blown away by the humanity and inhumanity of the war. The books have led me down paths of research and exploration that have greatly blessed my life.

I also read the Wouk Books (a second time) while I was taking a class on the Weimar Republic. I was particularly interested in Wouk's philosophical views. I think he does a good job of pointing out that philosophy does not happen in a vacuum. It affects many things, most significantly politics and Zeitgeist.

"The Caine Mutiny" and "This is My God" are more well written, but may be less interesting (unless you like US Navy ships or are interested in Modern Jewish Orthodoxy).

I would be interested to know what your opinion was, more specifically.

chris said...

Oh, and you should add "A Series of Unfortunate Events." They make me want to read more literature.

Savanna said...

I've read a few of these! Also, I have a historical crush on Charles Dickens.