Ok. Finally I have sorted out my 5 books for my profile.
Speaker for the dead – Orson Scott Card. Read Enders Game first to give context (the short story version is better than the novel if you can get it). Primarily, it’s a book about truth. But there are also aliens, yay.
The Little World of Don Camillo -Giovanni Guareschi. I’d never heard of this little gem until I found it in a second hand book store and bought it on a whim. It’s just nice.
Jonathan Livingstone Seagull – Richard Bach. It’s a bit cheesy I know. And far to popular amongst people who have healing crystals, don’t wear shoes and think hair will clean its self if you just leave it. But I like it. A lot.
The Wasp Factory – Ian Banks. Dark, Sick, Twisted. mmm.
Bluebeard- Kurt Vonnegut. In my youth I aspired to be Kilgore Trout. (yup, I wanted to be a failed science fiction writer who could only get published in porn magazines- I guess I just aimed too high). The scene in Breakfast of Champions where Rabo Karabekian justifies modern art was a revelation to me. Bluebeard is the story Rabo Karabekian. Possibly not Vonnegut’s best work. But Rabo Karabekian opened my eyes to modern expressionism. He’s earnt his place.
Five close runners were:
Scruffy – Paul Gallico. Despite being responsible for the snow goose, which is really disgusting literary cheese that still manages to makes me cry every time I read it (an over mature gorgonzola to Richard Bach’s mild cheddar), Scruffy is a nice book. Not great, or life changing. Just nice.
Lord of the Rings – J.R.R. Tolkien. I love it but … gay midget porn.
Dune – Frank Herbert. Science Fiction at its most epic.
The Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck. Would have made it into the five but for the breast feeding at the end, which freaked me out a bit.
Catch 22 – Joseph Heller. Made me laugh.
And five abject literary turds were:
War and Peace - Tolstoy. Supposedly the greatest book ever written? Well I completed it, decided I must have missed the good bit and read it again. I can only think that those who love it judge books by their weight. Basically, its Harold Robbins without the sex and huge long interjections by the author on the inevitable nature of history that are complete bollocks.
Something happened - Joseph Heller. Don’t be mislead by the title. Nothing happens. About eight million pages of boredom and then on the last page a fat bloke accidentally smothers his kid. There. Saved you a read.
The Bible - God. Ok word of God it may be (although there is surprisingly little on beetles if it is). A good read it ain’t.
Harry Potter and the armpit of doom – J.K.Rowling. Actually quite liked the first book, for a kiddies book. Then I read the next book. AND IT’S THE SAME BOOK. She’s just changed the title. Now fair play to J.K. I’m all in favour of conning children out of their cash. But lets not pretend that’s good writing.
Battlefield Earth. – L. Ron. Hubbard. The hero is called Johnny Goodboy Tyler. The baddie has a limp. Humans go from backwater monkeys to rulers of the galaxy in two weeks. But the worst thing is that even though its utter crap, its hugely readable, enjoyable, cant put it down crap. And that’s scary.
Of course, tomorrows lists may be wildly different…