The Influential Books Game has been circulating the internet for the past couple of weeks. As a writer it’s hard to narrow down the list, but I’ll try!
10 books which have influenced my view of the world. These books are not all my favorites, nor are they all the best books I’ve read. I’m going with my gut.
- The Singing Stone by O.R. Melling
I spent a lot of time hanging out in the library when I was a kid. I pulled this one out of the stacks at random. It was my first real taste of the fantasy genre and I was hooked.
- The Birthday of the World by Ursula K. Le Guin
This collection of short stories completely changed the way I looked at the short form. They opened my mind up to a world of potential and what if’s.
- The Fionovar Tapestry by Guy Gavriel Kay
I didn’t want this one to end. I cried when I finished this book and that never happened before. Victory came at a price both emotionally and physically – and the characters dragged my heart along with them.
- The Onion Girl by Charles de Lint
Fantasy that’s not based out of European mythology? No knights in armor? An other world that’s more like a dream than a physical place? This book knocked a hole in my idea of fantasy.
- In the Skin of a Lion by Michael Ondaatje
Every scene is dreamlike in it’s poetry: a miniature postcard, a snapshot in time. I still can’t get the images out of my head.
- American Gods by Neil Gaiman
Gods roaming around middle America, scraping a living on the fringes of society, and hanging out with ex-cons. What stuck with me is the style: the grit, the grease.
- Virtual Light by William Gibson
It’s a multicultural, mixed up, overpopulated, frantic, world. It seemed real, down to the street speak, and references to current culture. I didn’t enjoy science fiction until I read Gibson.
- Blackberry Wine by Joanne Harris
At first I was at a loss for how to categorize this book, but it introduced the idea of subtle ‘everyday magic’ in the world (and the wonders of fruit wine).
- The Sarantine Mosaic by Guy Gavriel Kay
I was struck by four things: the amazing world building, a thankfulness that I’ve been lucky in love, an awareness of what makes a satisfying conclusion to a novel, and the desire to re-tile my bathroom with dolphin designs. I’m not kidding. Don’t laugh. It’s not funny.
- Clan of the Cavebear by Jean M. Auel
I have a suspicion that my parents gave me this book because they didn’t want to have the ‘birds and the bees‘ talk. Let me tell you it worked. I also bought the next two books.
That’s my list! What’s yours? Let’s see it!