A blog about whatever randomosity my fevered mind conceives.

Challenge Day 17: A book you’ve read that changed your views on something.

Okay, today I noticed that I somehow managed to get ahead of myself; I completely missed day 17; so while yesterday’s challenge should have been today’s and Saturday’s should have been yesterday’s, the one I’m jumping on now should have followed ‘someone or something I could definitely live without’. Are you still with me? Good, let’s move on.

I think every single book I’ve ever read has altered my perception in at least some small way, but I’m not sure that there’s been a solitary title that’s managed to completely change my views on anything. While I’ve been greatly inspired by many books, I can honestly say that I’ve never had that Eureka! moment of ‘Wow! That’s what I’ve been doing/thinking wrong all this time’. Instead of forcing my brain to try and select a single title, let’s instead look at some of the titles that have inspired the most thought for me over the years.

I shall now list the first 20 books (in no particular order) that come to mind;

1 – Anthem by Ayn Rand

2 – Watership Down by Richard Adams

3 – The Plague Dogs by Richard Adams

4 – The Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield

5 – Lord of the Flies by William Golding

6 – Chariots of the Gods by Erich Von Daniken

7 – The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger

8 – To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

9 – Night Chills by Dean R. Koontz

10 – On Writing by Stephen King

11 – Animal Farm by George Orwell

12 – Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell

13 – Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

14 – Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer

15 – The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell  

16 – Foucault’s Pendulum by Umberto Eco

17 – Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

18 – The Quran

19 – Misquoting Jesus by Bart D. Ehrman

20 – The Dragons of Eden by Carl Sagan

Wow, twenty came up fast. I could (and probably should) go on to explain how each of these books has effected me and why. However, I find myself with limited time this morning (once again) and I still have many things to get to today. Instead of taking you on a long journey with each of these titles, I’m just going to say that each of these books made me pause and think… and are still making me think today. Most of the titles (if you’re familiar with them) will be obvious as to why. I’d apologize for my slothfulness on this matter, but considering how long-winded I usually am, I imagine most of you will be relieved to find such an easily consumable post… consider this my gift to you! (tee hee) 🙂 

{Note: If I should find myself with extra time and/or interest, I may yet return to embellish here later.}



21 responses

  1. I have a reading list for the summer.

    March 19, 2012 at 7:18 am

    • I feel a little guilty about being so lazy, but I could have too easily turned this into another 2000 word post and I really didn’t want to do that.. nor do I really have the time this morning.

      March 19, 2012 at 7:21 am

      • I think that’s okay. All your other posts are long, so you’re allowed to have one day off. It’s only fair.

        March 19, 2012 at 7:28 am

      • Oy, that’s what I was thinking. I have so much to do again today… and I have a poem I want to write and at least one more post that’s in my brain for the day… also, I need to find time to read my faves. Oh! If only there were more hours in a damn day!!!!

        March 19, 2012 at 7:29 am

      • I swear!!

        March 19, 2012 at 7:37 am

  2. SweetP

    Great list! Some I’ve read, and others I will look into. If #4 impacted your life, try “The Secret” and “The Power”, the go well with #4!

    March 19, 2012 at 8:06 am

    • I’ve actually read The Secret, but not The Power; I’ll take a look for it, thanks!

      March 19, 2012 at 1:10 pm

  3. half i’ve read and the other half i wanna read – ayn rand? dayum girl.
    i read ‘to kill a mocking bird’ once. it taught me nothing about killing any kind of bird. all i learned was not to judge a man by the colour of his skin, and what good is that?
    a stolen homer simpson quote, that one

    March 19, 2012 at 9:50 am

    • Have you read Atlas Shrugged or We the Living? But buddy from back home turned me on to Rand.

      March 19, 2012 at 1:03 pm

      • both on my list – what is ‘reading’?

        March 19, 2012 at 2:01 pm

      • Heh!

        March 19, 2012 at 2:02 pm

      • Yo!
        i say ‘hip’. you say…

        March 19, 2012 at 2:04 pm

      • I know I should say ‘hop’ but I really wanna say ‘ostrich’… dunno why.

        March 19, 2012 at 2:08 pm

      • when will you stop making me smile?

        March 19, 2012 at 3:48 pm

      • hopefully never:P

        March 19, 2012 at 6:09 pm

  4. I’ve read 8 out of your 20 books…not bad, but where’s the romance? How about some Bronte? Wuthering Height heartbreak?
    Anna Karenina? Viriginia Woolf To the Lighthouse (or any other book by her)? Now, you got me thinking…I do love Stephen King and The Stand was one of my favorite books by him and of course, Misery! To Kill a Mockingbird I read in grade 7 and will never forget it. What a book! I think it’s time to reread it. If you want to read an amazing book in one day ( Paulo Coelho’s By The River Piedra I sat down and wept). I read this book over and over again for some Truth.
    And The Celestine Prophesy was so life changing that I lent it to my friend who still hasn’t given it back to me (years, or decades later)!
    Nice write, Robin.

    March 19, 2012 at 7:22 pm

    • This list was based on the first 20 titles that came to mind when I attempted to summon books that have really caused me to stop and think and/or inspired me over the years. These titles aren’t even a true reflection of my favourite books, since a few of them – though I loved the way they challenged my mind – I would likely never read again (for example, though I found it interesting, thought provoking and even a little inspirational, I can’t imagine myself trying to stumble through the Quran a second time around). Each of the books listed here are responsible for making me look at the world through eyes altered by the read… if that makes sense.
      I did enjoy the twisted relationships painted throughout Wuthering Heights, and I’d have to be a fool not to enjoy Virginia Woolf (though I preferred Mrs. Dalloway somewhat more than To the Lighthouse), but I’m not sure they’d have made it on this list, even if I’d drawn it out longer. The same could be said of King – who just so happens to be one of my favourite writers of all time (the Stand being one of my favourite books of all time) – though I’ve found all of his titles thought provoking, only On Writing was a truly inspirational title for me. The only reason Koontz made it on this list is that when I first read Night Chills, I’d previously never even heard of subliminal messaging and the idea scared the hell out of me. I did some research and learned how very real it was and that scared me even more… it’s something I still think about often and it causes me to be highly suspicious of advertising (lol paranoid maybe, but it is what it is).
      I’d really like to explore this whole subject in greater detail at some point in time… I love reading! I will definitely check out Paulo Coelho’s By the River Piedra – thank you for the suggestion and thank you SO much for the great comment.
      P.S.: I also lent my first copy of The Celestine Prophecy to a friend who never gave it back… I only bought a new copy for myself about a year ago; when I first found out there was sequels to the title – I wanted to reread the original before getting into them.

      March 20, 2012 at 6:08 am

  5. Don’t you just hate those book swipers or snipers or whatever this computer is telling me is not proper English. I’m also missing Les Miserables (which is my no. 1 book of all time). And so I found this antique version at the second hand book store! I have to get myself another Celestine Prophesy too! Of course, Mrs. Dalloway is just an incredible book (so is The Hours). I could go on and on! 🙂

    March 20, 2012 at 9:46 am

  6. If these are the twenty books that will define what you become as an artist and writer, you demonstrate a solid foundation here.

    March 20, 2012 at 9:13 pm

  7. Pingback: From my past – Chariots of the Gods! | Pdubyah

  8. I dont know more than half of the books because maybe i am not a book reader. I read 2 books i think but it is always not done and read halfway. I cant seem to finish a book at all and I think I am too lazy to read on. My mum loves stephen king books and is weird that she actually like have emotions when reading it. My sister does that too laugh all of the sudden! Haha well I guess i am not a bookworm but more of a post reader! Thank You! 🙂

    April 13, 2012 at 8:01 pm

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