These are a few of my favorite… books!
I don’t know if you’ve seen my Pinterest but I am a huge BOOK NERD. I have an incredibly high Goodreads reading goal that I’m only going to accomplish thanks to my ebooks, audio books and the multitude of kid’s books that I seek out for inspiration. Something that I want to start doing besides just reading, is reviewing books for other potential readers. I’ve read a couple of articles on best practices with book reviews but in my opinion, mine are a little too personally based. In that regard they may also be a little too vague. I’m incredibly passionate about not ruining books or movies or the like for future readers/viewers. If I ever inadvertently ruin something for someone I feel like a million bricks of guilt pile upon me. So in the vein of trying something different, I thought I would start out by telling you about my favorite books of all time. So here goes!
“Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers” by Mary Roach is one of my favorite non-fiction, science based books. Just that phrase right there may deter some people from even considering it but don’t think too hard about it. Roach has a way of making even the most mundane of topics positively hysterical. I am constantly laughing out loud whenever I read something new of hers. Stiff is no different and was also on the New York Times Bestseller’s list, which it rightly deserved. Like the title describes, it tells you some of the multitude of ways that your body is used when you donate it to science after you die.
This book itself doesn’t get as graphic as you may think, but does have some moments if you have a squeamish stomach. Even though I am into horror/thriller/true crime types of things, sometimes if something gets too graphically detailed I will have to step away for a bit. I’m trying to work through that since I do love to write those genres as well. (if you have any tips for me let me know.) With a subject that could be seen as macabre, Roach has light brevity to it without being disrespectful. Highly recommend if you enjoy books such as “Bodies We’ve Buried: Inside the National Forensic Academy” or any of the howdunit books for writers.
The Stranger Beside Me
“The Stranger Beside Me” by Ann Rule is in my top 5 true crime books, “Helter Skelter” by Vincent Bugliosi being my #1 in that list. Why is a book about the infamous Ted Bundy in my favorites you may ask? Well something that I haven’t displayed yet, but am sure to is my love for the macabre. That is ranging from dark and dreary Edgar Allen Poe to my absolute fascination with serial killers and the way their minds work. I know that Ted Bundy’s story has been told to death, with them using sections of it on Law & Order to the numerous documentaries or podcasts about him.
The reason I love this book so much is more for the writer, than for the subject matter. Besides having an amazing eye for detail, and a perfect way of arranging all the puzzle pieces so that you don’t see the full picture till the end, Ann Rule actually was friends and knew Ted Bundy personally. Having that connection made this book all the more intimate, her knowing his personality before his arrest and capture helps tell a story far greater than others can. I highly recommend this book but it is not for the faint of heart. The subject matter is clearly disturbing and not intended for young readers. If you love anything true crime related this is the book for you.
“Rant” by Chuck Palahniuk. I don’t even know where to begin with this book. Palahniuk is definitely a unique writer that has a cult following. Most well known for writing the notorious Fight Club, Rant is a unique way of storytelling that is beyond compare. That’s to say, I don’t really know how to describe it without giving major plot points away. In my opinion, this suspenseful story line with jumping time lines keeps the reader awake and enticed to keep going.
Unless you’re like my mother who the subject matter of dried menstrual blood didn’t bother but dirty boogers did. In my defense I didn’t recommend it to her, she snagged it off my bookshelf when I was moving and kept it after I had gone. Sometimes his writing leaves your adrenaline pumping and your palms moist. Other times your brain is left trailing after the words you’ve just read. He is masterful at his craft and I can’t wait to see what else he comes out with. If you enjoy movies like “Momento” or have even seen “Fight Club,” check out Rant.
Welcome to the Monkey House
“Welcome to the Monkey House” by Kurt Vonnegut. I don’t know if this selection is cheating since it’s not a full-length novel but a series of short stories but I’m going to tell you about it anyway. I was introduced to mister Vonnegut’s work while I was in college. I had a group of friends that would bum around and try to outsmart and outwit each other with things we knew, things we read, or something we’d seen that was intrinsically more artistic than the others had experienced in the group. I had never heard of him so I automatically started reading everything I could find. “Welcome to the Monkey House” was one that my friends had actually never heard of before so I felt pretty stinking cool for being able to one-up them. Honestly I don’t know if any of them ever read it, but partly because of that memory he will always have a place in my heart.
Welcome to the Monkey House by Kurt Vonnegut [My mother hasn’t returned my copy yet.]
I adore him in the fact that even in short stories he can create dystopian worlds that you are glad you’re only entering through a book. That’s another subgenre that I tend to find myself loving but to a more minimal amount compared to my thriller/horror/suspense love. I think everyone should check out some Vonnegut, he has a wide enough collection that you’re sure to find something you love.
What are you currently reading and what are your loves? Check out my goodreads and let me know if there’s something I should fast track in my TO BE READ pile.