What Books Stick With You?

As a kid, I read Lloyd Alexander’s Black Cauldron series cover to cover at least twice a year every year.  I loved the characters, the stories, the settings. I really need to go buy the boxed set to have in my home. 

There aren’t many books that lodge themselves in my brain, or that I turn to when I’m in a specific mood.  But if you’re looking for literary comfort food, here’s my list: 

  • Gone With the Wind (Margaret Mitchell): For me, there isn’t one other female main character that I love and want to slap as much as Scarlett O’Hara.
  • Jamaica Inn (Daphne duMaurier):  It’s got a super creepy setting, murder, mystery, and a totally delicious bad boy. Many of you may remember duMaurier from her novel Rebecca, but I promise Jamaica Inn is better.
  • Parts of most of Cassandre Clare’s books:  Yes, I said parts…like the kissing parts.  She writes the best first kisses. 
  • A Tale of Two Cities (Charles Dickens):  I know it’s completely melodramatic, but I love the story. Sorry. 
  • If it’s Halloween, I usually read Dean Koontz:  They give me horrific nightmares, which I guess makes me twisted.  And yet, I usually like to scare myself stupid. 
And that, my friends, is all I can think of off the top of my head.

What books do you pick up and read over and over?


  • Kristen Wixted

    I just bought Blackbird Pond recently for my girls! I am also a HUGE fan of Jamaica Inn-too funny. Daphne DuMaurier was my reading comfort food for a long time, and that is one of her best.
    My husband is re-reading the Lloyd Alexander series right now with my kids. I had never read it as a kid (for shame!) and when I discovered it as an adult I was completely hooked.
    My reading comfort food is definitely Franny and Zooey by JD Salinger. I’ve gone back to it many times.
    good idea for a post!

  • Diana

    I love To Kill A Mockingbird, such a good book. I’m not one to go back through books more than once because I have the attention span of a gnat, however that is one I’ve read at least twice. Maybe, Harry Potter…Angela’s Ashes. Good question.

  • Becky Wallace

    @Diana: To Kill A Mockingbird is one of my “fancy” hardbacks. I got it at B&N and it has a really nice binding. I have one book toward my imaginary library!

    @Redleg: I’ve always wanted to read those. I heard the movie was horrible, though. Did you see it?

    @Lois: Hello Lois!! The Black Cauldron still rocks my socks off. Can’t wait till my kids are old enough that we can read it together.

  • carrieannebrownian

    The Decameron, by Giovanni Boccaccio. I’m currently in the middle of a series of blog posts about some of my favorite stories, and some upcoming ones about my least-favorite tales. Forget modern reading fads like Harry Potter and Twilight; give me the classics that are still being read and discovered centuries after they were written!

    Most of Hermann Hesse’s books. He’s my next-favorite writer, and the books that have resonated most with me and influenced my life the most are Demian, Steppenwolf, and Narcissus and Goldmund.

    Anything by Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn, my favoritest writer.

    The Tao Te Ching (the only book I had with me during my junior year of high school, when my family were living with my paternal grandparents and most of our stuff was in storage in my other grandparents’ house)

    A number of books and series I loved as a preteen, like Judy Delton’s Kitty series and Patricia Clapp’s Constance.

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