One of the first books I remember reading and loving is one that still makes me cry when I read it. I first read this book in sixth grade as part of a class assignment.
Another book that I’m thankful for happens to be a classic. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. When I bought the book it was with the intention of reading it over the summer so that I wouldn’t have to read it in my next English class. I hadn’t, however, intended to read it in less than a day, but once I picked it up and started it, I found I couldn’t put it down. It was dark and twisted and I found myself pondering a lot of questions about ethics and life and death and the idea of “playing God.” I found it a great read that made me (and still does make me) contemplate the idea of nature vs. nurture. And if you don’t understand what I mean by that? You probably haven’t read it.
The Taking by Dean Koontz is my next pick for books I’m thankful for. I went through a phase where I read everything of his that I could get my hands on, and then kind of forgot about him. My boss at the time, Connie, told me about this weird book she’d read about the apocalypse, which let’s face it, I was clearly destined to love. I love apocalyptic fiction in all its formats, so once I started reading it, it was another I couldn’t put down. It wasn’t quite what I expected which in all honesty made me love it even more. If you’re like me and enjoy dark apocalyptic fiction, this is a book you should read and also be thankful for.
My next pick is a book that I probably wouldn’t have picked up without some prompting from my dear friend Ellie who’d read it and gushed about it multiple times. I happened to see a copy on sale at a local bookstore a few years ago so on a whim I picked it up. I’m thankful that I did because “Eat, Pray, Love” by Elizabeth Gilbert turned out to be a much better pick than I’d thought. Memoirs, on a rule, don’t tend to capture my interest for long, but this one and its focus on Gilbert’s journey about finding spirituality -- and her own sense of self -- was inspirational and encouraging. I found so much hope reading her book that I hadn’t expected to find.
The final book on my list is The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. I put off reading this book for a long time even though I’d heard good things about it, because I knew the subject matter was a tough one. It’s about a girl who has cancer, who falls in love with a boy who has cancer. And when I first started hearing about this book, I’d just lost a close friend to Osteosarcoma. Which happens to be the diagnosis of the book’s main male character. I waited over a year to read it, and when I finally settled into it, I flew through it (and a box of Kleenex) in about two days. It was emotionally a rocky read, but also very cathartic.
So what about you, dear reader? What books are YOU thankful for?