An old chum from my school days recently invited me to participate in the Ten Book Challenge that’s been bouncing around Facebook of late. I don’t often indulge in these things, but this was one I had no trouble doing: the idea is to name ten books that have been important in your life and that have stayed with you. I was surprised that it took almost no deliberation to come up with ten:
Little Bear – Else Holmelund Minarik, illustr. Maurice Sendak
Pippi in the South Seas – Astrid Lindgren
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl
Fifth Business – Robertson Davies
The Diviners – Margaret Laurence
In the Village – story by Elizabeth Bishop
The Lost Salt Gift of Blood – Alistair MacLeod
Coming Through Slaughter – Michael Ondaatje
The Frozen Thames – Helen Humphreys
The Little Shadows – Marina Endicott
Of course there are plenty more, among them The Letters of E.B. White, Gerald Durrell’s My Family and Other Animals, and Glenn Gould, Music and Mind by some fellow named Geoffrey Payzant*.
It makes me happy to see so many Canadian names on this list. I hadn’t planned it; that’s just the way it turned out. I guess I was hooked at an early age.
(*This fellow may have had something to do with it. He’s my dad.)