Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Love Best

So there's this blog that I LOVE to stalk read.
They participate in this little thing called Top ten Tuesdays, which is just where you list your top ten of something. Generally, there is a set topic that all participants use, but this week the topic is "freebie," so today seems like a great time for me to jump in and get my list on.

You know, it's hard for me, sometimes, to think of a Top Ten anything. When I did the Fat Chance tour with TTC&B2B Book Tours back in the end of March/beginning of April, one of the bloggers involved asked me for a Top Ten list, and I was in total panic mode for a week.

It should have been easy, you know? Like, okay, Top Ten Foods? Nah, a chunky author who wrote a book about a depressed plus-size woman CAN NOT write about food, right? Okay ... Top Ten ... uh, Favorite Colors? Um, no. Boring. Top Ten Songs?? Yes! I love music!!! But wait, another blogger wants a playlist which is basically the same thing. Hmm. What to do? I did finally figure it out, by simplifying the concept and giving a regular Top Ten of my favorite things in general, spanning different topics because I really couldn't think of one topic where I had ten solid favorites.

Maybe I'm a little ADHD.
Or maybe I'm just REALLY varied in the things that I like.
But, there are certain topics that I love more than others,
and there are things that I definitely love at least ten of.

Like books.
I love books.

So, here they are, my Top Ten Favorite Books.
Or series', because it'd be silly to have a Top Ten that's mostly made up of one series.
Duh. In no particular order ...

DIANA GABALDON's Outlander Series is first up on the list, both because they are the first books I thought of and because they are the first books I always think of. Thick and heavy, both with pages and well-written plot, these books have been my go-to favorites for years and I've read the entire series so many times that I've lost count.

They are an intriguing mix of sex, medicine, past and future, war and peace, love and hate. They fascinate me, they teach me. They've sucked me in and still haven't let me go yet. I love them.

Each book is a heavy, time-consuming commitment that took me at least a month (each book) to read because of the thickness of the book. I swear there isn't a book in the series that's less than about 800 pages, and I LOVE that. I do enjoy the shorter, more quickly pleasurable read ... but Diana's Outlander books have such meat on them, so much to absorb and take in, so many characters that are so easy to love, or to hate. They aren't thrown in all at once, either, but are instead introduced in bits, and there are even some that we get to watch grow up through the pages of the series, from childhood right on up to adulthood where they deal with their own issues and experience their own loves. The premise behind these books is a woman from 1946 who is accidentally thrown through a sort of hole in the stretch of time, and she finds herself suddenly two hundred years in the past, deep in the highlands of Scotland. Understandably, things are rather different there than what she is accustomed to, and poor Claire is forced to adjust pretty quickly. She does well though, and her journey makes readers maybe begin to crave a simpler time when people were (generally) more honest and life itself was more (typically) routine. Not to mention, rough and tough but sweet and loyal Jamie Fraser?? Yum, yum. Granted there are odd things about him that I had some trouble with, but a simple reminder that he's from somewhere around 1745 generally helps me to regain my sympathy for his old-old-old-fashioned and sometimes downright primitive ways. He's sweet, and his loving way of always providing for Claire, always looking out for her just wins me over, every time.

Thus far, the series consists of 'Outlander,' 'Dragonfly in Amber,' 'Voyager,' 'Drums of Autumn,' 'The Fiery Cross,' 'A Breath of Snow and Ashes,' and 'An Echo in the Bone.' 'Written in my Own Heart's Blood' is expected to release in the fall of 2013, and let me tell you, the wait is almost literally killing me. I read other books mostly because that one isn't out yet, to tell the truth.

The LEFT BEHIND series is next, written by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins. These books are almost entirely responsible for my salvation as a Christian. Now, I won't go too far into that right now, but I'll say this, I read these books (at first, at least) as a non-Christian and that didn't stop them from being fabulous. From a non-Christian perspective, they've got it all: action, adventure, good guys, bad guys, love, life, and learning. It's the long-awaited apocalypse and the bad guys are taking over. Through the series, you follow a little group of the good guys, just trying to get by in a world that is entirely new to them, albeit familiar in many ways to the way it used to be.

From the Christian side of it, these books help to explain the book of Revelation and the End Times prophecies in a way that a lot of "regular" people just don't understand. They bring reality to the end books of the Bible is a terrifyingly real way, bringing home the horrors predicted in the book of Revelation. These books take the prophecies in a literal way (which I love), showing us what the world will be like when the prophecies come into play and Revelation takes hold of the world. They tell us (Christians) why it's so important to minister to others, to our loved ones. Because as Christians, we aren't afraid of the apocalypse, we aren't afraid of the wars and the ... whatever. Because we won't be there. We believe it all starts with "the Rapture," when Jesus calls believers to Heaven, and then there will be the final battle between good and evil, God and Satan vying for the hearts and souls of those left behind.

And none of us want our loved ones to be here for that.

But anyway, Christian and non-Christian alike, these books are AWESOME, even if you're only reading them for the story.

My, my, this post has grown long, hasn't it?
Better get on with this, huh?

A few other favorites of mine, still in no particular order are:

* The Bible *
(of course)
* The Malory Family Series *
(historical romance series by Johanna Lindsey)
* The Twilight Series *
(Stephanie Meyer's books may be different, but they're brave and I love the love story)
* Anything by Nicholas Sparks *
(I have never read ANYTHING from him that I didn't love)
* The Half-Blood Series *
(Lauren Dawes brings back Anne Rice's old style, but with a twist)

And Some Old-School Favorites:
* A Little Princess *
(oldie but goodie from Frances Hodgson Burnett)
* Island of the Blue Dolphins *
(I loved being assigned to read this Scott O'Dell classic in school)

... and ...

* Hatchet *
(This series by Gary Paulsen is my all-time favorite YA read. The survivalist theme caught me right up, fascinated from the beginning.)

And there you have it! My Top "Ten" Books!

1 comment:

  1. I haven't read Outlander yet, but people have said it was a good book. If I come across it in my travels I will pick it up.


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