viernes, 20 de febrero de 2015

Books that made me who I am

0 comentarios
Big words, I know. And yet, the truest I have ever spoken. Books don’t raise you, some people say. They can’t influence you that much. Those people clearly don’t read much, because books have taught me more than I can put into words. Books have shaped me; have given me ideas, desires, passions. (And better grammar and vocabulary, but that’s neither here nor there). Some books have influenced me more than others. They’re not the most beloved, nor, perhaps, the most important books I have ever read. But without these books I would be…well, someone else entirely. And since I quite like who I am, I think that’s to be celebrated.

So, without further ado:

1. Anne of Green Gables, Lucy Maud Montgomery. Anne taught me the wonders of being different. She taught me to love words, to appreciate the beauty of a perfect line of prose. Maybe I was meant to be a writer; perhaps I would have fallen into it anyway. But as it stands, I owe a debt of gratitude to Anne, for the words.
2. Harry Potter Series, J.K Rowling. The words are one thing, the idea is another. Harry taught me, in a way that perhaps no other book has before or after, how you can love a book, how you can drown in it, discuss it for hours, obsess over it, understand it, live it. It also, in a very roundabout way, taught me how to be brave, how to speak up, how to think for myself, and how to make friends.
3. The Kite Runner, Khaled Hosseini. My first experience (and to date the most harrowing) with the idea that a book can break your heart, and then heal it all over again, just like life.
4. The Gospel according to Jesus Christ, Jose Saramago. I had a hard time choosing between one Saramago book, because I think if this post were called authors that made me who I am, he’d be the first on the list. This book earns its place mostly because the lessons were harsher than in other books, what I got out of it more important. Because this book was a master class in asking questions, in challenging the status-quo, in not believing everything you see or hear.
5. The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-Exupery. Probably the first book of all the ones on this list I ever read, and one I re-read constantly. I wish I could say it taught me to think like a child (a tall order), but at least I can say it taught me to think outside the box, to see with the heart, in a way. To feel.
6. The madman, Kahlil Gibran. I first encountered this book many years ago, when I was young, and insecure, and terrified of being different. It’s not Gibran’s best known work, or its most renowned, but for me, it will forever signify acceptance, understanding, and maybe even permission to be who you are.
7. The Bicentennial Man, Isaac Asimov. My dad used to read me Asimov as a bedside story, and of all the stories I ever heard, this was the one that stuck with me, the one about changing, about being better than you are, about not accepting fate, but making your own.
8. In the Time of the Butterflies, Julia Alvarez. Reality is sometimes worse than fiction. It hurts just as much, if not more. And if we tell it, if we make it mean something, then, sometimes, we can change the world.
9. A time to Kill, John Grisham. Life is not fair, and fair is sometimes unfair. At the age this book fell into my hands, I couldn’t understand this concept, even though it was clearly outlined, but I’m still glad Grisham tried to teach me before it was time for life to do so.
10. The Perks of being a Wallflower, Stephen Chbosky. This book, I think, has influenced a lot of people, in a multitude of different ways. I re-read it recently, and the thing I can remember getting out of it, and it is a big thing, a life changing thing is this: Life goes on. You can get through it.

These are not the only books. I think every book you read leaves a little in you, even the books you hate.  But these are the ones I could write down without thinking, the most important ones, or perhaps, just the ones that better encompass this particular time of my life. I’ll keep reading. I’ll find more. Books are always there, and books will continue to help me become more of who I am. A better version of me. Maybe they’ll help me find the me inside the shell that is …well, me. That’s what they do. Even when you don’t want them to. 

No hay comentarios:

Publicar un comentario

© 2012. Design by Main-Blogger - Blogger Template and Blogging Stuff