Wednesday, January 26, 2011

My Taste in Books

I think an explanation of my taste in books is in order, since I have completely departed from my previous reviews in writing about a thriller. I consider my taste to be rather eclectic. It has been influenced by various forces throughout my life, beginning with my mom. She taught me to read at an early age, and I have never stopped. For our homeschool studies, she expected me to read the classics and other quality literature. She also assigned a great deal of historical novels to augment the textbooks. From her, I learned to love Jane Austen, G.A. Henty, Howard Pyle, Roger Lancelyn Green, Brian Jacques, and many others. My elder sister introduced me to Louisa May Alcott, Baroness Emmuska Orczy, William Shakespeare, James Patterson, E.D. Baker and others. I never picked up her liking for vampire novels, though. I read Dune, Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, the works of Avi, Lloyd Alexander, Patricia C. Wrede, J.R.R. Tolkien, Terry Pratchett, and a few other sci-fi authors on the recommendations of my older brothers. However, they could not convince me that Robert Heinlein was any good, no matter how hard they tried. Dad introduced me to Action/Adventure/Thrillers and such. Because of him, I have read the works of Jack Higgins, Clive Cussler, James Rollins, Matt Reilly, Justin Scott, Tom Clancy and others of that sort. I especially enjoy books by Alistair Maclean and Robert Ludlum, but I do not like Ian Fleming at all. With these foundations, I took off on my own. Eva Ibbotson, Juliet Marillier, Anne McCaffrey, John Flanagan, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Stephen Lawhead, Shannon Hale, Laurie King's Russell series, Cameron Dokey, Lauren Willig, C.S. Forester, Gillian Bradshaw, Sharon Shinn, Sherwood Smith, Abigail Reynolds, Lois McMaster Bujold, Rafael Sabatini, Kenneth Oppel, Elizabeth Chadwick, and a myriad of other authors in every genre soon decorated my mental library, and I am forever adding more. There is no way I could ever name them all, and there are so many that I want to read but have not. I am constantly becoming frustrated with my local library, though it is one of my favorite places, because they simply cannot buy every book that I would like to borrow. I love nothing more than to discover a wonderful book that had somehow escaped my notice before, especially if it makes me smile. In Abigail Reynolds' novel Pemberley by the Sea, her character said, "I like cream with my coffee and optimism with my literature." (Or something to that effect, I am terrible at remembering exact wordings.) I agree with this sentiment whole-heartedly, and I hate tragedies. (Which makes no sense when I think of how much I love King Arthur, Robin Hood, and Greek mythology.) I also love to find books that I can give to my younger sisters, one of whom is fast becoming as much of a book-a-holic as I am. Occasionally they return the favor, my 12-year-old sis discovered the Ranger's Apprentice series by John Flanagan and soon the nearly the whole household was reading them, including my 26-year-old brother, which proves that I come from a large family of book-fiends. :)

                                                            Lieder Madchen


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