I made this listing as a counterpart to my previous movie list since i enjoy books as much as i enjoy movies. The list below is compromised of books that i personally find truly remarkable or great for a variety of reasons, i've included both fact and fiction. I may add more as time goes by as there are perhaps another twenty books that i consider of this quality. One of the criteria for this list is that i can thoroughly enjoy reading the book many times over and thus want to keep them in my very small and select collection of "classics". I get something good and new every time i reread the books on this list.
Some of them may merely entertain you by allowing you to enter a totally different world for the duration. Others actually affected (usually for a shortish period and in a subtle way) how i perceived the world and how i act. A few changed me fundamentally and permanently.
Of course they may not all appeal to you, but i do guarantee that for every five you read there will be at least a few that will knock your socks off.
I am not going to extensively review them since there is a plethora of reviews to be found on the internet. Also in almost every case i think these books are best read with as little prior knowledge or expectation as possible.
T = The
F = Fact
R = I recommend (nearly) all of the books by this author.
1984 -George Orwell
Catch 22 -Joseph Heller
Deals with the absurdity and insanity of war/bureacracy in an intensely funny way. Brilliant.
Hobbit T -J.R.R. Tolkien
Predecessor of The Lord of the Rings. A quicker pace and less details make it "more legible". Amazing.
How Things Don't Work F -Victor J. Papanek
"Poking fun at the nonsense and near nonsense products that engulf us", but also presents alternatives. This book is 30 years old and thus hard to come by.
Even Cowgirls get the Blues R -Tom Robbins
As a another
person put it:
"I knew it was a good book, because by the time I had finished it I had experienced every emotion a book could possibly make me feel. I loved some of these characters, hated others, I laughed, I cried, I read on in horror, disappointment, rage, elation, and pure ecstatic joy. The pure music of Robbins's words carried me out of this world and into a world of magic and poetry. Even after the first few pages, I had learned that all I had to do was toss a thumb in the air and I could hitch a ride to a place where I could learn a little bit more about the world around me and be completely enchanted in the process. I'm glad I was able to find my way to the clockworks. I have run across very few authors that have the same love of language Robbins does. I applaud this book loudly and recommend it to everybody... not just the aspiring cowgirl. It's philosophical content is inspiring."
be my number one book, it is such an enjoyable read and at the same time
there are true pearls of wisdom throughout. Say Hello to the Chink from
me. The movie adaptation is dire! Avoid it!
This book is perhaps
Lord of The Rings T - J.R.R. Tolkien
Zen an the art of Motorcycle maintenance - Robert M. Pirsig
Philosophical, incisive, a great great road story, Eastern and Western Philosophy and exploration of quality in many ways. The entire novel (and many other very interesting things beside) can be read online on the following website:
Een Voet tussen de Deur, Geschiedenis van de Kraakbeweging 1964-1999 F - Erik van Duivenvoorden.
I've read quite a few books on this topic but this Dutch one is -for me- the definitive book about the Dutch squatting movement. Beautifull pictures, In depth, engrossing and inspiring writing by a former squatter.