Some of your posts for the prompt – One Book – have been about a childhood novel. Possibly because I mentioned at the start of the F4T post how my love for books began when I was a child. But also in my Question for Floss I asked which had been her favourite book from childhood.
I too remember so many wonderful books from when I was a kid. Tarzan, by Edgar Rice Burroughs was a firm favourite. And I would live out his escapades myself in the woods. Of course I loved a good Enid Blyton like Malory Towers. Who didn’t. When my kids were young, one of our favorite books was Tom’s Midnight Garden by Phillipa Pearce. The three of us read in turns before their bedtime. Such amazing imagery. I remember it to this day and would recommend any parent to share it with their child.
The One Book prompt can be about any book – adult, child, erotic, horror, mystery – but I did think immediately I chose the theme that to pick, just one, for most people is almost an impossible task. A few bloggers including my man and Elliott have managed – but – as I added the guide question of – were there other contenders? I have decided to write about them as well.
For me the ones that would be on my most read list are very much contenders:
Edgar Allan Poe. I adore his short stories particularly the Tell Tale Heart. Oh how I could see that scene and hear the heart beat beneath the floor boards. I would read it under the covers as a teenager and my own heart would echo in my ears as I read.
The woman in White, by Wilkie Collins. A classic. Wilkie was Dicken’s brother in law and wrote a couple of books. This one is a gem. A perfect mystery. I started reading it when I was at Uni. I didn’t have much money so I’d purchased it from a second hand store. When I was about a hundred pages in I suddenly realised the next fifty pages were missing. Oh my god. I had to read it. I had to know what was going to happen. The story line was so spell binding.
I rang around all the libraries in my area and finally found it in one about ten miles away and immediately drove there. Funny thing is I remember that drive to this day. It was a route I rarely took. A sunny autumn afternoon and the light was shining on the rust coloured leaves and all seemed well with the world. Once the book was in my possession I hurried home and finished the brilliant story in super fast time. Now I have several copies in my book case.
Then there’s most novels by Jame M Cain. I adore his writing style, it inspires my own. The Magician’s Wife is a favourite. I also greatly admire DH Lawrence, his stories and poems.
Those were all the contenders, books and authors that I would hate to do without. But I really wanted to choose just One Book, the one I have read the most and each time gained more from it. The one where some of the scenes still haunt me. The book I know I will read again, and again. For me, this is that book…
Birdy by William Wharton
Another I picked up in a second hand book store. The movie, based on the book Birdy hadn’t been made. It was not well known at all. The blurb wasn’t even very attractive but something drew me to the novel. And so began my love affair with Birdy.
First here are two of my favourite quotes from Birdy.
“Not many people are interested in what somebody else is thinking, or what they have to say. The best you can hope for is they’ll listen to you just so you’ll have to listen to them.”
“People can’t fly because they don’t believe they can. If nobody ever showed people they could swim, everybody’d drown if they were dropped into the water.”
I think without telling you anything about the novel you can see by the quotes why it captivated me. More than once I have become immersed in the story line of a friendship between two very different people. Intrigued by how brilliantly the author touches upon the fine line between insanity and what is perceived as normal. Not to mention been horrified about the repercussions of war. So many themes intertwine within this book. Even the rather strange sex scenes are compelling and beautifully written.
I am so impressed with all the F4Thought book recommendations this week. They just go to show that even in this modern day and age we are all reading, which is wonderful, and enjoy different genres too. It may be a good idea to put them all together and publish a special post over Christmas. A sex bloggers book list. It would be great to check out some of the choices made and perhaps pick a couple of them to read that are out of my comfort zone.