Posted by: Kate | September 4, 2014

10 Books that Affected Me

So over on The Girl With the Red Hair I saw this post about the 10 Books that Affected Me. I was up for the challenge, so thought I’d bring it over here. Keep in mind, I reserve the right to change my mind at any time on this list!

1. The Road, Cormac McCarthy: I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again – hands down the best written book I’ve ever read. Left me gutted for days, but will never leave me. The skill and ability in this book is astounding.

2. The Outsiders, S.E. Hinton: For those of us who came of age in the 80s, this was The Book. Stay Gold, right?

3. The Water Babies: A classic that is very difficult to find now. But I remember reading it when I was four, and I read it to my son when he was four. So it was pretty special, all about fairies at the bottom of the garden.

4. Fall On Your Knees, Anne-Marie MacDonald: Brilliant, dark, Canadian.

5. The Ancestor’s Tale, Richard Dawkins: My favourite science book. Love the twist on Chaucer in the title, love the book. Proves that science writing can be gripping and exciting. And that yes, I am a big science geek.

6. The Life of Pi, Yan Martel: Best ending to a novel ever. Stunned me, and that is rare.

7.  Even Cowgirls Get the Blues, Tom Robbins: I could have picked a number of his books, including “Another Roadside Attraction” and “Still Life with Woodpecker”. My girlfriends and I read these in late high school, and they were awesome and weird and eye-opening.

8. Basin and Range, John McPhee: McPhee writes about geology with such grace he makes it come alive.

9. Animal Kingdom, Barbara Kingsolver: While I like her novels, this collection of essays stood out for me.

10. Floating in My Mother’s Palm, Ursula Hegi: This was one of the first books I read written by someone whose first language wasn’t English. The lyricism of the writing stayed with me for a long time. (I realized that this is wrong, as I read Le Petit Prince in both French and English when I was young, and then read Camus’ The Plague in high school. But this was the first novel as an adult reader, and it stuck with me.)

The 10th one I think could be interchanged with a number of other books, but this list is a fairly good reflection of books that have stayed with me, for one reason or another.

If you feel like playing along, please do!





  1. Thanks for playing along! Oh how could I forget about life of pi. I loved that book. Definitely never saw that ending coming!

  2. i always love seeing what you’re reading… there’s a bunch of books on this list that i will look into!
    i’ve seen this idea floating around the facebook, i’ve started making a list in my head, perhaps i should put it on the blog and make it official! :)

  3. I did this on Facebook. I’ve enjoyed seeing all the lists. Stay gold.

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