Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Love But Rarely Talk About

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is top ten books I love but rarely mention on the blog. These are a mixture of favorites from childhood and favorites from my pre-blogging years. All of them are amazing.

Ten Books I Need To Rave About More Often

1. Bridge to Terabithia – Katherine Paterson

Jess Aarons' greatest ambition is to be the fastest runner in his grade. He's been practicing all summer and can't wait to see his classmates' faces when he beats them all. But on the first day of school, a new girl boldly crosses over to the boys' side and outruns everyone. 
That's not a very promising beginning for a friendship, but Jess and Leslie Burke become inseparable. Together they create Terabithia, a magical kingdom in the woods where the two of them reign as king and queen, and their imaginations set the only limits.

2. Interpreter of Maladies – Jhumpa Lahiri

Navigating between the Indian traditions they've inherited and the baffling new world, the characters in Jhumpa Lahiri's elegant, touching stories seek love beyond the barriers of culture and generations. In "A Temporary Matter," a young Indian-American couple faces the heartbreak of a stillborn birth while their Boston neighborhood copes with a nightly blackout. In the title story, an interpreter guides an American family through the India of their ancestors and hears an astonishing confession.

3. The Body of Christopher Creed – Carol Plum-Ucci

When Christopher Creed, the class freak and whipping boy, suddenly disappears without a trace, everyone speculates on what could have happened to him. Soon fingers begin pointing, and several lives are changed forever.

4. When Zachary Beaver Came to Town – Kimberly Willis Holt

Nothing ever happens in Toby’s small Texas town. Nothing much until this summer that’s full of big changes. 
It’s tough for Toby when his mother leaves home to be a country singer. He takes it hard when his best friend Cal’s older brother goes off to fight in Vietnam. Now their sleepy town is about to get a jolt with the arrival of Zachary Beaver, billed as the fattest boy in the world. Toby is in for a summer unlike any other, a summer sure to change his life.

5. Walk Two Moons – Sharon Creech

"How about a story? Spin us a yarn." 
Instantly, Phoebe Winterbottom came to mind. "I could tell you an extensively strange story," I warned. 
"Oh, good!" Gram said. "Delicious!"  
And that is how I happened to tell them about Phoebe, her disappearing mother, and the lunatic.  
As Sal entertains her grandparents with Phoebe's outrageous story, her own story begins to unfold—the story of a thirteen-year-old girl whose only wish is to be reunited with her missing mother.  
In her own award-winning style, Sharon Creech intricately weaves together two tales, one funny, one bittersweet, to create a heartwarming, compelling, and utterly moving story of love, loss, and the complexity of human emotion.

6. The Long Walk – Richard Bachman (Stephen King)

On the first day of May, 100 teenage boys meet for a race known as The Long Walk. If you break the rules, you get three warnings. If you exceed your limit, what happens is absolutely terrifying . . .

7. In Our Time – Ernest Hemingway

When In Our Time was published, it was praised by Ford Madox Ford, John Dos Passos, and F. Scott Fitzgerald for its simple and precise use of language to convey a wide range of complex emotions, and it earned Hemingway a place beside Sherwood Anderson and Gertrude Stein among the most promising American writers of that period. In Our Time contains several early Hemingway classics, including the famous Nick Adams stories "Indian Camp," "The Doctor and the Doctor's Wife," "The Three Day Blow," and "The Battler," and introduces readers to the hallmarks of the Hemingway style: a lean, tough prose—enlivened by an ear for the colloquial and an eye for the realistic that suggests, through the simplest of statements, a sense of moral value and a clarity of heart. 
Now recognized as one of the most original short story collections in twentieth-century literature, In Our Time provides a key to Hemingway's later works.

8. The Perks of Being a Wallflower – Stephen Chbosky

Charlie is a freshman. 
And while he's not the biggest geek in the school, he is by no means popular. Shy, introspective, intelligent beyond his years yet socially awkward, he is a wallflower, caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it. 
Charlie is attempting to navigate his way through uncharted territory: the world of first dates and mix tapes, family dramas and new friends; the world of sex, drugs, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show, when all one requires is that perfect song on that perfect drive to feel infinite. But he can't stay on the sideline forever. Standing on the fringes of life offers a unique perspective. But there comes a time to see what it looks like from the dance floor.  
The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a deeply affecting coming-of-age story that will spirit you back to those wild and poignant rollercoaster days known as growing up.

9. The Catcher in the Rye – J.D. Salinger

Since his debut in 1951 as The Catcher in the Rye, Holden Caulfield has been synonymous with "cynical adolescent." Holden narrates the story of a couple of days in his sixteen-year-old life, just after he's been expelled from prep school, in a slang that sounds edgy even today and keeps this novel on banned book lists. His constant wry observations about what he encounters, from teachers to phonies (the two of course are not mutually exclusive) capture the essence of the eternal teenage experience of alienation. 

10. The Things They Carried – Tim O’Brien

They carried malaria tablets, love letters, 28-pound mine detectors, dope, illustrated bibles, each other. And if they made it home alive, they carried unrelenting images of a nightmarish war that history is only beginning to absorb. Since its first publication, The Things They Carried has become an unparalleled Vietnam testament, a classic work of American literature, and a profound study of men at war that illuminates the capacity, and the limits, of the human heart and soul.

What is a book that you love but rarely talk about?


  1. I love Catcher in the Rye and think I am going to reread it this year. The Perks of Being a Wallflower is one I need to get to soon too. Great list!

  2. I actually LOATHE The Catcher in The Rye! I can't stand Holden! I just can't!
    My TTT.

  3. Love The Perks of Being A Wallflower, it really speaks to my soul. Great list!

    Sinead @ Less Reality More Books

  4. Wow, that's a heavy list. I remember being horrified when I first read Bridge to Terabithia. But then my best friend and I created our own secret place down by a creek that ran between two housing developments near our house.

  5. The Perks of Being a Wallflower and Terabithia are both on my tbr list and hopefully I'll get to them soon! I've heard wonderful things about both :) Lovely list AJ^^

  6. I watched Bridge to Terabithia the movie with my husband years ago, but I didn't warn him about the ending. He was SO mad at me. He's still mad about it. His mother was watching the movie at our house the other night, and my husband had to leave and go to bed because he didn't want to see the ending again.

    I found The Perks of Being a Wallflower in a used book store when I was in college, and I really enjoyed it. It's been years since I read it, so I really loved the movie that releases a couple years ago.

    I liked The Catcher in the Rye, but I like Franny and Zooey better. I am planning to re-read that book this year. We'll see if I still like it.

  7. The Long Walk is SO GOOD!! It is honestly one of the few Stephen King books I really loved!

    Here are my Top Ten!

  8. Great list! I need to read The Interpreter of Maladies, having absolutely loved Lahiri's The Namesake.

  9. Great list! I absolutely adore The Perks of Being a Wallflower, and I also really should talk about it so much more than I do! The Long Walk also sounds really interesting, especially as I have yet to read a Stephen King book.

  10. I have only read one of the books on your list and there are several that I haven't heard of. And I thought I knew books...lol! I read Catcher in the Rye in high school and remember liking it. I wonder if I would still enjoy it now. Maybe even more. Great list!

    Carole @ Carole's Random Life

  11. I read The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri I loved it. I'll have to try the book you mentioned!

  12. Bridge to Terabethia is one I haven't read since I was a young child! I can't remember much about it other than the fact that I really liked it. A reread might be in order for myself! I am also hoping to read some of these liked the Perks of Being a Wallflower!