This page is a list of my favorite books and a small description of the story along with why I love it… the book descriptions are provided by GoodReads. My opinions will be italizied below the descriptions of each.
Pride & Prejudice – “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife.” So begins Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen’s witty comedy of manners–one of the most popular novels of all time–that features splendidly civilized sparring between the proud Mr. Darcy and the prejudiced Elizabeth Bennet as they play out their spirited courtship in a series of eighteenth-century drawing-room intrigues.
- “Pride & Prejudice” is a personal family favorite. It is witty and romantic in the most hilarious ways. Do your homework on 16th century courting and READ THIS BOOK. It is a treasure.
The Night Circus – The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called “Le Cirque des Reves,” and it is only open at night. But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will.
- I’ve said a couple times that this is my favorite “new” book. Its Erin Morgenstern’s debut novel, and I enjoyed it very much. While the time jumps were confusing at times, there are parts that I re-read over and over again. And once my reading list goes down, I will happily pick it up again. Definitely an exciting mind trip.
Maximum Ride Series – No Book Primarily – Six unforgettable kids — with no families, no homes — are running for their lives. Max Ride and her best friends have the ability to fly. And that’s just the beginning of their amazing powers. But they don’t know where they come from, who’s hunting them, why they are different from all other humans… and if they’re meant to save mankind — or destroy it.
- These books were the one thing that I can really say came out strong from my “adolescent stage.” And they still mean a lot to me today. I loved following Max and her 5 adopted siblings through everything they went through. Every cutthroat fight, awkward moment and diabolical plot to foil, I followed all the way.
The Wind in the Willows – Meet little Mole, willful Ratty, Badger the perennial bachelor, and petulant Toad. Over one hundred years since their first appearance in 1908, they’ve become emblematic archetypes of eccentricity, folly, and friendship. And their misadventures-in gypsy caravans, stolen sports cars, and their Wild Wood-continue to capture readers’ imaginations and warm their hearts long after they grow up. Begun as a series of letters from Kenneth Grahame to his son, The Wind in the Willows is a timeless tale of animal cunning and human camaraderie.
- Playing my heart strings like a harp – this adventure is smart, eventful, witty and sometimes deep. I can only watch a certain version of the film adaptation, but the story Mole and Ratty is definitely one you want on your shelf. Even if it’s just for some light summer reading…
Little Women – Lovely Meg, talented Jo, frail Beth, spoiled Amy: these are hard lessons of poverty and of growing up in New England during the Civil War. Through their dreams, plays, pranks, letters, illnesses, and courtships, women of all ages have become a part of this remarkable family and have felt the deep sadness when Meg leaves the circle of sisters to be married at the end of Part I. Part II, chronicles Meg’s joys and mishaps as a young wife and mother, Jo’s struggle to become a writer, Beth’s tragedy, and Amy’s artistic pursuits and unexpected romance.
- There is a young hearted wonder in this that I connect to and a playful nature, even through their tragedies, that keeps you going in your dark times. Again, a family classic for me. I grew up with this story.
Alice in Wonderland & Through the Looking Glass- Weary of her storybook, one “without pictures or conversations,” the young and imaginative Alice follows a hasty hare underground–to come face-to-face with some of the strangest adventures and most fantastic characters in all of literature. The Ugly Duchess, the Mad Hatter, the weeping Mock Turtle, the diabolical Queen of Hearts, the Cheshire Cat–each more eccentric than the last–could only have come from that master of sublime nonsense, Lewis Carroll.
- Do I even need to talk about this one…? ❤
Pilgrim’s Progress – Set against realistic backdrops of town and country, the powerful drama of the pilgrim’s trials and temptations follows him in his harrowing journey to the Celestial City. Along a road filled with monsters and spiritual terrors, Christian confronts such emblematic characters as Worldly Wiseman, Giant Despair, Talkative, Ignorance, and the demons of the Valley of the Shadow of Death. But he is also joined by Hopeful and Faithful. An enormously influential 17th-century classic, universally known for its simplicity, vigor, and beauty of language, The Pilgrim’s Progress remains one of the most widely read books in the English language.
- I first heard this story thanks to the “Adventures in Oddessy” tapes my brother and I listened to in the car as kids. When I got older, the powerful epic stuck with me. This is an amazing journey that will having you reflecting on your life.
The Hunchback of Notre Dame – In the vaulted Gothic towers of Notre-Dame lives Quasimodo, the hunchbacked bell ringer. Mocked and shunned for his appearance, he is pitied only by Esmerelda, a beautiful gypsy dancer to whom he becomes completely devoted. Esmerelda, however, has also attracted the attention of the sinister archdeacon Claude Frollo, and when she rejects his lecherous approaches, Frollo hatches a plot to destroy her that only Quasimodo can prevent.
- I confess, Disney fueled my passion for this story. The powerful lessons it teaches us are so underrated now a-days. The heartbreaking story of Quasimodo is one that sticks with you and reminds you of the importance of human kindness.
Les Miserables – Within his dramatic story are themes that capture the intellect and the emotions: crime and punishment, the relentless persecution of Valjean by Inspector Javert, the desperation of the prostitute Fantine, the amorality of the rogue Thénardier and the universal desire to escape the prisons of our own minds. Les Misérables gave Victor Hugo a canvas upon which he portrayed his criticism of the French political and judicial systems, but the portrait which resulted is larger than life, epic in scope – an extravagant spectacle that dazzles the senses even as it touches the heart.
- A tragedy of epic proportions that fires up the human spirit. No words for what this story means to me. I love it. Go watch either version of the movie. (Preferably the new one, much better.) Unless Quigon Jin as Jean Valjean is your thing. And singing ISN’T. The old version is not a musical
Anne of Green Gables – When Marilla Cuthbert’s brother, Matthew, returns home to Green Gables with a chatty redheaded orphan girl, Marilla exclaims, “But we asked for a boy. We have no use for a girl.” It’s not long, though, before the Cuthberts can’t imagine how they could ever do without young Anne of Green Gables–but not for the original reasons they sought an orphan. Somewhere between the time Anne “confesses” to losing Marilla’s amethyst pin (which she never took) in hopes of being allowed to go to a picnic, and when Anne accidentally dyes her hated carrot-red hair green, Marilla says to Matthew, “One thing’s for certain, no house that Anne’s in will ever be dull.”
- I can say the same thing about this as I did for Little Women. I grew up with this story and it is touching. However, being an awkward poetic redhead, much like Anne, I sewed my little 5 year old heart to this story. Its another witty, sad, and beautiful piece of literature. If you haven’t even heard of “Anne of Green Gables”… shame. go look at it right now.
Sherlock Holmes Mysteries – London Edwardian private detective Sherlock Holmes. Four novels, 5 books of 56 short stories.
- Again, I don’t even need to talk about Sherlock Holmes. Its a mental ride that will make you rethink everything, trust no one and examine even the most innocent looking things
The Parasol Protectorate – First, she has no soul. Second, she’s a spinster whose father is both Italian and dead. Third, she was rudely attacked by a vampire, breaking all standards of social etiquette. Where to go from there? From bad to worse apparently, for Alexia accidentally kills the vampire–and then the appalling Lord Maccon (loud, messy, gorgeous, and werewolf) is sent by Queen Victoria to investigate. With unexpected vampires appearing and expected vampires disappearing, everyone seems to believe Alexia responsible. Can she figure out what is actually happening to London’s high society? Will her soulless ability to negate supernatural powers prove useful or just plain embarrassing? Finally, who is the real enemy, and do they have treacle tart?
- Obsessed with Gail Carriger’s amazing characters. Alexia, Connal Maccon, and her outrageously dressed best friend Ivy. This story is great. Never dull, that’s saying something, and demands your attention with each book.
The Wild Girls – Twelve-year-old Joan is sure that she is going to be miserable when her family moves from Connecticut to California. Then she meets a most unusual girl.Sarah prefers to be called “Fox,” and lives with her author dad in a rundown house in the middle of the woods. The two girls start writing their own stories together, and when one wins first place in a student contest, they find themselves recruited for a summer writing class taught by the equally unusual Verla Volante. The Wild Girls is about friendship, the power of story, and how coming of age means finding your own answers, rather than simply taking adults on faith.
- Another coming of age tale. This kept my little fire to write lit through 8th and 9th grade. Its cute, and I would suggest this to a younger audience. Anyone who needs to get their creative spark lit.