Mrs B and I had the chance to visit today with Jeff and Fritha T, who will be going to Brazil sometime in the not so distance future as full time missionaries. We all met at W.C. Bombfunk’s place and he fed us a great lunch. [didn’t want leave that out!]
As we sat around, talk turned to books, traveling, etc and the T’s told us how they’d had to weed out their books. Due to portability/weight/space issues, they obviously couldn’t take them all. That got Mrs B and I thinking, and then talking on the way home. If we were going to a far away place and had a limited amount we could bring, what would we bring, from the books we owned? Re-readability, depth, humor, etc, etc all played a part of what we would choose.
We settled on the number 20, just because 🙂 We counted omnibuses as 1 volume. The Bible didn’t even count because it is such an integral part of our lives that it isn’t even an option to not bring it. Without further ado, here is my list of 20 books I count essential.
1: American Standard concordance A wonderful tool to go along with ones Bible.
2: Complete Shakespeare I almost feel like this is cheating, but I do have this book. The pages are thinner than a Bibles and it is so massive that you have to read it on a big flat surface. But it is one book. And you get EVERYTHING of his. This would keep me occupied for years I suspect. I’m not even going to try to list everything.
3-12: Malazan Book of the Fallen This is a series of 10 books. The ninth book comes out later this year and book 10 next year. They are a complex, intricate fantasy series that has such great depth that re-readability is almost a necessity just to understand everything going on. I’ll list the books in order:
Gardens of the Moon
Memories of Ice
House of Chains
Toll the Hounds
Dust of Dreams [Forthcoming]
The Crippled God [Forthcoming]
13: Lord of the Rings Trilogy This is the father of epic fantasy. And to have such clear cut heroes and villains helps. A LOT.
14: Dune Freewill vs destiny, all set in a futuristic, quasi-religious setting. And it is just some good writing. Herbert’s best in my opinion
15:Complete Jane Austen I like Austen and having an omnibus pushed her over the line pretty easy.
16: Talion: Revenant This novel by Stackpole, while a bit simple at its core, is good fantasy. Not deep and angsty, but a fun, furious ride from beginning to end.
17: Sentenced to Prism This is funny scifi by Foster. Tells an engaging story while keeping you amused. Read it in a day but always good for an uplifting re-read when you’re feeling down. Feel good scifi 🙂
18: The Tower at Stony Wood I had to include at least 1 book by McKillip. This is as close to poetry as I’ll ever come to liking. I think my cousing Sara called it mystical prosetry or something like that. She was spot on.
19: War and Peace Considering it took me 6 determined months to read, and I loved it all, this tome has many things to discuss. Which is a very good thing in a balanced book diet.
20: Nicholas Nickleby I LOVE Dickens and I think this is my favorite Dickens. It was this or the Pickwick Papers, but with books by Foster and Austen, I thought my humor quota was filled.