Barbara: In another lovely serendipitous twist, last week I appealed to a local college for admittance into a creative writing course that had been categorized as “closed”. On Monday afternoon, they let me know I could take it. On Monday night, I was sitting in my first college class since, well, college! It was so so so so wonderful. One of our assignments was to list the first ten novels we thought of when asked which ones have made an indelible impression on us (and they don’t need to be fancy-shmancy, super-impressive books).
Now I throw the question out to you! But, of course, we’re doing FIVE only. I know you will all have dozens of favourite books for a myriad of wonderful reasons, but the real curiosity is: which FIVE do you think of FIRST?
1. A Prayer for Owen Meany, by John Irving
2. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, by Junot Diaz
3. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, by Jonathan Safran Foer
4. 100 Years of Solitude, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
5. A Handmaid’s Tale, by Margaret Atwood
All of these stopped my heart over and over: the language; the stories that pull you in, revealing the contortions and marvels of life, its ugly side, and its (yes, here’s that word again) serendipity; the unending spirit; the circular symmetry of life; and the fascinating enigma that is the human soul.
1. Father Joe
2. The Lovely Bones
3. Watership Down