Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Book Love

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“Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book.” 
~John Green, The Fault in Our Stars

Do you love a book like that?
What is it?



79 comments:

  1. The last book I can remember telling everyone they had to read it was ....

    The Princess Bride

    I have pushed Stepping Heavenward by Elizabeth Prentiss and A Prayer for Owen Meany into many hands too.

    But gosh. The Princess Bride....Too Blave

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    1. I can't think about "A Prayer for Owen Meany" without cringing. (The saw and the finger) It still makes my stomach turn a little. And I have a pretty tough constitution. I don't know why that scene was so memorable to me.

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    2. Janice3:01 PM

      xoxox

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  2. Did you take the Princess Bride Test on FB? http://www.zimbio.com/quiz/6JqMhk9dtV4/Character+Princess+Bride?result=LBuPF5gJYEw
    Love Katie's photo... of course!
    xoxo

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    1. I did! I was Princess Buttercup :-)

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    2. Hallo. My name (was) Inigo Montoya. You keeled my fathair. Prepare to die.
      ........ Well, that was my result, anyway. ;-)

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  3. Anonymous9:35 AM

    I do love it when I read a book like that! And I love this quote even more....

    --mary e. from wheaton

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  4. Anonymous9:46 AM

    That John Green sure has a way with words! Every once in a while I'll read something I love and will try to foist in on everyone I see shortly thereafter. The Fault in Our Stars was one such book. However, my tried and true loves are:
    *Pride and Prejudice, *Little Women and *Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (7th book).

    Mary Z

    P.S. I so look forward to the comments today! Talking about books is right up there with babies, baby names and movies. :)

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    1. HP #7 - Love!!!

      Peace like a River by Leif Engler was such a book. I hated to finish it.

      ALSO Expecting Adam by Martha Beck. I seriously loved that book.

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    2. The most amazing thing I remember about Expecting Adam was how whiney all the Harvard students were about their grades. Isn't that odd. That's all I remember. She had a hard pregnancy and the Harvard kids were bad writers.

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    3. I loved her attitude. I should read it again and see how it strikes me, all these years later :-)

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    4. Anonymous12:06 PM

      Ah Susan, I read Peace Like a River from the library and then bought the book for my dad and went around telling everyone to read it. I so enjoyed that book. I must read it again. Thanks for the reminder. jep

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  5. This book has been on my reading list for a while. I know a movie is coming out so I have to read it first!

    Some of my favorites are To Kill a Mockingbird, Christy, Pride and Prejudice and Les Miserables. Not necessarily in that order. I enjoyed The Princess Bride, too, reading it for the first time to my youngest a few years ago.

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    1. Anonymous10:28 AM

      Good taste, Southern Gal! To Kill a Mockingbird and Les Mis are both in my top ten. :)
      Mary Z

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    2. I have an autographed hard cover of Christy.

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  6. I seem to experience difficulty when I attempt a response, so I'll make it quick. For pure out laughs and my love of hiking, B. Bryson's A Walk in the Woods; for pure out all time greatness, To Kill a Mockingbird; and for pure out genius D. K. Goodwin's Team of Rivals, so much better than the D. D. Lewis Lincoln movie!

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    1. Anonymous12:09 PM

      Barb, we laughed until tears rolled down our faces at Bill Bryson's A Walk in the Woods. We still talk about his friend throwing away all the food, because it was too heavy. ;-) jep

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  7. Anonymous9:54 AM

    I have read some books that have left their impression on me, but can't say they were life changing. The last book I read was Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers. I recommend it.
    Love the quote! Can't wait to see what everyone says.
    Beautiful photo of Katie. : )

    Sarah P. from Iowa
    P.S. I don't know if you were joking about my age on FB, but yes I am over 30. : P ha ha

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    1. I read Redeeming Love a while back, but really was impacted by it. My adult daughter loved it too.

      Ditto about the photo, Sarah; Beautiful!

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  8. Nick Hornby says, in his review of Gilead, "If you don't like this book, you have no soul." I laugh every time I read that. I have come close to thinking that...but I try not to (-:

    I push Wendell Berry on people, but not with much success. I have to choose that audience carefully. I love The Hawk and the Dove series enough to NOT push it on people...I am afraid to know if people don't like it. How is that POSSIBLE?????

    Two other books I like to encourage people to read are In This House of Brede by Rumer Godden and Island of the World by Michael O'Brien. I lose myself in those stories, and the main characters inspire me.

    Fantastic quote, Donna!

    Happy Wednesday all. Hump DAAAAYYYYYY!!!

    Di

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    1. Gilead is on my shelf - er, it was ! Now it's in a box in Germany somewhere. I will read it ... soon! What about "Housekeeping"?

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    2. Funny you should say that...here is the rest of the quote.

      “Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book. And then there are books like An Imperial Affliction, which you can't tell people about, books so special and rare and yours that advertising your affection feels like betrayal”

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    3. House of Brede is on my shelf, unread. I'm putting it on my nightstand.

      Donna, what would my journal be without your splendid quotes?

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    4. Carol,
      You will want to know that House of Brede is in my top ten favorites AND it was in Queen Jean's top ten. I would be thrilled to have you read it and review it! I LOVE your reviews.
      Di

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    5. Cyndi K G6:09 PM

      I am delighted to hear people talking about In This House of Brede. I read it 25 years ago and was ready to join a convent ... and I was a non-Catholic wife with 4 children! But it was such a good book that I read everything else that Rumor Godden wrote!

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  9. Anonymous10:27 AM

    Hi Donna,
    I love so many books. Over the last few years, the ones that I have encouraged (ahem--more like nag) people to read are In the Time of the Butterflies by Julia Alvarez, Peace Like a River by Leif Enger, The Summer Guest by Justin Cronin, and the School of Essential Ingredients by Erica Baumeister. Di, I haven't read the ones you suggested, so they are going on my reading list.

    hmbalison

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    1. Hmbalison, my financial guy told me about the School of Essential Ingredients. At our first meeting we discovered our love of books. Twenty minutes of book talk later, my husband clears his throat. Ha!

      What he said: it's one of those books I bought at a used bookstore that ending up costing me a fortune because I bought dozens of copies for all the people in my life. He also said that he made a Thanksgiving meal based on this book.

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  10. Dawn K10:28 AM

    "The Prodigal God," by Tim Keller, made me rethink my relationship with God (in a good way!). Reading it was a very good learning experience for me. I highly recommend it!

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  11. The one for me was Island of the World by michael o brien, thanks to Di and carol. So that's the top of my fiction list. For non-fiction, the one I scream about the most often is probably NT Wright 'for all God's Worth' ---- but I'm also a fickle pickle, because I just finished Jen hatmaker's 'seven' and I've been shilling it with, indeed, evangelical zeal. When I like a book, a REALLY like a book. Oh, and this year I read the complete works of Lucy Maud Momtgomery, which was an absolute joy.

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  12. When I was in college I read TH White's 'The Once and Future King.' After I stopped crying I was sure that if everyone rad that book, no one would ever hurt anyone else again.

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    1. What a touching comment.

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    2. Oh, Anita. What high praise for a book. The Once and Future King is one of those books. I remember Susan Wise Bauer saying that she did not require her oldest to do any analysis or reporting on that book because of the deeply personal impact it had on her when she was in high school.

      Di

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    3. Never heard of it. What is wrong with me? Sheesh.

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    4. It's King Arthur, Steph. Think...Camelot ;-)

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  13. I'll agree with Peace Like a River and Gilead. :)

    And I'll add Watership Down.

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  14. Anonymous11:24 AM

    The novels that moved me the most- To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee and Angle of Repose by Wallace Stegner. Favorite multi-generational sagas- The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough and And Ladies of the Club by Helen Hooven Santmyer. The books that inspired me most- Through Gates of Splendor by Elisabeth Elliott and Gray Matter by David Levy, M.D., written by a neurosurgeon who makes the decision to pray and ask for God's help before each surgery he performs. And I will always, always love Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier.

    Debbie Z.

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    1. LOVE Rebecca - I need to read it again.

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    2. Anonymous11:36 AM

      I need to read it again, too, Susan. My favorite first line ever. "Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again."

      Debbie Z.

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    3. {{{LIKE}}} :-)

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    4. Debbie, we live in rural Oregon. One of our best doctors prays before surgery. I've read and loved other Wallace Stegner books (and he taught Wendell Berry who writes my favorite fiction). I'm putting Levy's book on my TBR list. Thanks!

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    5. ...And Ladies of the Club is the only book that moved me to tears at the end. I felt like I had lost an old friend. I really need to drag out my copy and re-read it.

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  15. THis is interesting to me Donna. I think I love some books so very much, but not one of them should be read by everyone. I tailor the books to the people I know..
    For instance: Crossing to Safety by Wallace Stegnar is amazing and you, living near Madison must read it. But I wouldn't say its for many men to read…
    and
    Barbara Kingsolvers: Animal Dreams is another favorite but I don't think many men would like it.

    I love your question

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    1. Anonymous12:13 PM

      Kathy, we love Crossing to Safety at our house and my dad thinks it is better than Angle of Repose. He has read all of Stegner's books. jep

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    2. I *loved* Crossing to Safety!

      I feel the same way, Kathy, when people ask for book recs. I usually ask them to tell me three books they love.

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    3. Anonymous12:30 PM

      Carol, that is a wonderful idea. I am going to start doing that…promise to give you credit for it. ;-) jep

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  16. Anonymous12:24 PM

    I have been making remarks as I read down the comments, but who knows if they will show up or not. Fickle computer/cloud/whatever!!! My life has been spent telling others about books from childhood up to today. :p Such a book hound from birth and so many books touch me and I appreciate that quote, because it is true that it is hard when someone you recommend a book to does not appreciate it like you do. I have grown a tough skin and just chalk it up to each to his/her own. The one book that my husband and I have given away the most copies of is A Severe Mercy by Sheldon Vanauken. Great photo of Katie! love and prayers, jep

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    1. When my husband and I were "courting" so many years ago we would spend HOURS snuggled together reading passages to each other from A Severe Mercy ... one of the most amazing books EVER!

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    2. Anonymous4:32 PM

      I am thrilled to read that you loved A Severe Mercy, too. We have our last copy on the bookshelf with our C.S.Lewis collection. ;-) jep

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    3. Top 5 for me, too. Truly outstanding.

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  17. I'm like an iron in a forge that is smokin' hot about a book...until...I've cooled off a little.

    I have bought multiple copies of Island of the World and another favorite City of Tranquil Light to give to people.

    There are characters like Burley Coulter (a Wendell Berry creation) and Scout who seem very much alive. About a month after we had finished reading The Kite Runner together, my husband said—out of the blue—, "I miss Hassan."

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    1. Anonymous12:34 PM

      {{{LIKE}}} jep

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    2. Anonymous12:59 PM

      "I miss Hassan." I know that feeling! What a gift when characters come alive for us!! The nice thing is we can visit them again and again.

      Mary Z

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    3. I didn't think I could like Carol's husband any more than I already do, but this puts Curt in the ultra-special column (-:

      DI

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  18. Updating my goodreads list - thanks, Donna for such a great discussion.

    The book that I have recommended most in recent years and moved me beyond measure was, "Still Alice" by Lisa Genova. It profoundly affected me, and has given me a completely different perspective as I deal with the aging around me, particularly those impacted by Alzheimers.

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    1. Patty, I completely agree- my mom has Alzheimer's and is entirely helpless at this stage. But when she was still at home with my dad and conversant, I devoured this amazing book and it affected me enormously.

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    2. Anonymous3:27 PM

      Patty and Susan, my book club read "Still Alice" last year and it was haunting. A great read. Prayers for both of you as you deal with those touched by Alzheimers.
      Mary Z

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    3. Thanks Mary Z <3

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  19. Thirty or so years ago I read "And Ladies of the Club". Not so much evangelical read, but one that has always stayed with me. It was a thick book and I was a young working mother, but I would stay in at lunch and read, read at home at night when able. I cried when the book ended because I became so entangled with the characters. Oddly, the two main characters had the same names as my best friend and I had, and she also read the book.

    Another popular book that was the center of a number of discussions among my friends was "The Lovely Bones". We were all taken by the alternative view of Heaven and it just opened up discussion. I think discussion can be a good thing.

    And, as Dr. Sheldon Cooper said in a recent episode of "The Big Bang Theory", Amy's beloved Pride and Prejudice is a flawless work of genius.

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  20. I have read a book like that, and it is Traveling Mercies by Anne LaMott. It is a story of her journey to faith and an imperfect story it is! She is so human and vulnerable and NOT perfect that it made me love her.

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    1. I agree with you Gary. What a wonderful book. I fell in love with Anne too.

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  21. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand remains on my reading list .... I have re-read it I can't count how many times. To Kill A Mockingbird, A Dog's Purpose by Bruce Cameron (you will NOT be able to read it without Kleenex), John Steinbeck's Grapes of Wrath, Diana Galdbron's series Outlander if you like mystical sci-fi ... there are just SO many books to read and so little time!

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  22. Janice3:06 PM

    Do I need to say The Princess Bride? There, I said it. All thanks to Miz Boo (who was just Donna back then) I used to buy up the paperbacks when I found them and then give them away. In college it was a bit of six degrees of separation when people would tell me how the ended up reading one of the copies I had given away.

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    1. Confession: I'm not a fan. (Ducking).

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    2. That's okay. You must remember when I fell in love with this book. I was 19ish. I had never read something so clever. I read it out loud to friends and children I baby sat. I read them the parts about Fezzik and Buttercup and Wesley.
      I don't expect to impress anyone with my love for this book. It is juvenille...but to me it was perfect. Having just lost my parents....the underlying theme said something outloud that I had just experienced.

      “Life isn't fair, it's just fairer than death, that's all.”

      “Who says life is fair, where is that written?”

      “As you wish...”

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  23. I'm almost ashamed to admit that I tried reading Princess Bride several years ago, but the movie was such a part of my growing up that I couldn't do the book! (hides face in hands)

    Now, anything and everything by LM Montgomery or Laura Ingalls Wilder, Pillars of the Earth (Follett), They Loved to Laugh (Worth)....those are my absolute part-of-my-very soul books.

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  24. Hi Donna,
    Wondering if you'd seen this. http://www.radiotimes.com/news/2014-03-11/call-the-midwife-what-will-the-show-do-without-jenny-lee. (Be careful reading the article, I think there are some spoliers in the article because Season 3 just ended in England. I just skimmed quickly, but was so sad read that Jessica Raine, who plays Jenny Lee is leaving the show.) I thought I remember you saying you liked the show Call the Midwife. I was just rewatching the first two seasons in anticipation for Season 3 starting and was doing some googling and came across this. I'm so sad! Why do these British actors and actresses keep leaving these very successful BBC series?!

    ~Heather

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    1. That is very sad. She is my fave. The books are all about her I think.

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    2. Jennifer Worth wrote the books the show is based on. The books are autobiographical and very good, but much grittier than the show. By the end of S2, the show had covered all that she'd written in her three books about being a midwife on the East End. S3 are stories are made up or based on other sources. Jennifer wrote a fourth book about caring for those at the end of their lives, but I haven't read that one. SPOILER: I'm sorry Jessica R is leaving. I don't think she's as well known in Hollywood as she thinks and I don't think doors will be flying open, but I wish her luck.

      I've enjoyed reading everyone's book suggestions. I've read many, but there were some new ideas for me. Thank you. --Missy

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    3. I am just this week finishing "In the midst of life" Jennifer Worth's book about the end of life - and I think it is wonderful.

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  25. Anonymous7:18 PM

    Anthony Adverse and How Green Was My Valley. Classic favorites. Oh yes. Green Dolphin Street. I wonder if anyone reads these books anymore?-fun to see all the favorites. Best regards-Jamie

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    1. I've never heard of Anthony Adverse, but I must check it out based on the other two you referenced. Oh, man, I loved how singing was seeped into Welsh culture. And I've been reading Goudge like crazy recently. I recommend Island Magic if you haven't already read it.

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  26. There are some great books listed here. I have forgotten how many I have loved in the past. One book that has me screaming from the rooftops is the book, "Held By The Hand Of God: Why Am I Alive" by author Joe Laws. http://heldbythehandofgod.com/ I have lost many loved ones in my life and this book has brought me such peace that I want to share it with everyone! It is a confirmation that we will see our deceased families again.

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  27. Unveiling Grace by Lynn Wilder
    Girl at the end of the world by Elizabeth Esther

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  28. The Story of Beautiful Girl by Rachel Simon
    The Space Between Us by Umrigar

    I can't wait to see the other books that have been shared.

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  29. Anonymous10:45 AM

    ah..the one book that changed my life, the one that only my family has read, is Knock On Any Door by Willard Motley. My dad read it when he was a teen, since it was printed in 1947. My dad gave it to me when I was about 14 or 15. Bill and Dave read it at that time too. I gave it to my kids when they were 13. They STILL talk about it. You know that saying "live fast, die young and have a good looking corpse"? That came from Knock On Any Door. I used to read Exodus by Leon Uris every year at Easter time. I don't know why, but I did. And lately, I loved the Kite Runner. But Knock On Any Door is the one that sticks with me all these years, (zillions of them!) later.
    Kris Schwarz

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