Books that affect you.
(I do like crying over stuff it has to be said, especially if something is poignant, I have no weapons or shields against poignancy, none)
But it made me wonder.
In a world soaked with visceral images, with immediate information, with blanket coverage of every horror imaginable, only books still have that power over me.
I suppose it is because you become invested in a book. They take time to read, they hold you up. You need to slow down to read, you need to digest what is before you, to think on it. You can re-read a book and get a different perspective than the first reading, they can blindside you when you least expect it.
With the recent death of Kurt Vonnegut the interweb has been flooded with nostalgia, normal toughie bloggers have spoken wistfully of reading Slaughterhouse Five and The Cat's Cradle. Ask any reader about a book they read in their youth and they get that look, that faraway gaze when days were ephemeral and the summers always hot. Famous Five, Secret Seven, Silver Brumby books all mean something to us now. I remember reading Beat of the City when I was ten or eleven and just being blown away. I wanted to be there, I wanted to be in that life. I lay in my hideout with the dog and I wasn't there at all, I was in a hot town in Australia, clicking my fingers, wearing a purple shift and too big shoes and being too cool for school( as a matter of fact I got that book last year, original copy, read it again and was still impressed)
I would like to know what is is that moves us to bittersweet memories, or disturbed sleep, laughter or tears. Or maybe I don't, maybe I want to carry on, loving the shit out of reading, transporting myself from this plain to where ever the next page takes me.
Well? Books that made you feel, have at it.
I'll go first,
1-We need to talk about Kevin (Lionel Shriver)-tears
2-The Lucifer Effect (Philip Zimbardo)-despair/nightmares
3-The Throwaway (Tom Sharpe)- helpless ridiculous laughter.
4-It (Stephan King) Fear/ revulsion.There is one image in the book I still get the colliwobbles over.
5-The Wonder Boys (Michael Chambon)- sheer rainy-day, sprawled in front of an open fire with buttery soldiers of toast sort of bliss.
6-The choirboys (Joseph Wambuagh) -all of the above.
7-Beat of the City (HF Brinsmead)-nostalgia.
8-The Rum Diaries (Hunter S Thompson)- Urge to get up and go somewhere with nothing more than a suitcase.Also urge to eat hamburgers.
9-Fear of Flying (Erica Jong)- Sexual awakening and belly laughing.
10 World According to Garp (John Irving) -Eye-opener and glimpse into the lives of others, tears too.