What are you reading?

Most of us have read books in the past that either the characters or setting of the book has touched us in some way that we feel a bit sad as we start nearing the end of the story. The last book that I read that made me think of it for weeks after I had finished was Herman Wouk’s The Winds of War that tells the story of an American family scattered across Europe right before World War II. He wrote a sequel to it called War and Remebrance which was good but not quite up to the level of the first book. So tell me, what book have you read that stuck with you for weeks or months after you had read it.


  1. Victor Hugo is my all-time favorite. I just re-read “Hunchback of Notre Dame” and once again, loved it. “Les Miserables” actually did change my worldview.

    The best recent novel I’ve read is “The Known World” by Edward Jones. It’s extremely subtle and thought-provoking, dealing with slavery and social identity in a racist culture.

  2. My very first job was in a bookstore.
    My boss told me that the reading the right book is just like falling in love.

    There is a story by Raymond Carver, called Cathedral. I can feel that story in my blood.
    Its just fabulous.

  3. “Cathedral” is indeed excellent, as is the absolutely stunning story “What’s in Alaska?” also by Carver.
    The Virgin Blue by Tracy Chevalier was quite good, quite moving.
    The Fermata by Nicholson Baker.
    Milkweed and Wringer by Jerry Spinelli are sad, beautiful, poetic.
    Unlikely, Or How I Lost My Virginity by someone whose name I forget, exact, touching, will remind you of things that you thought maybe only happened to you.

    When I think of more, I’ll post more.

  4. The Magus, by John Fowles, when I read it back in college (70’s), was magical indeed. The world seemed like a different place for months. The French Lieutenant’s Woman had only slightly less effect.

  5. i used to devour books, then university killed all my desires to read…

    this sounds so cliché but salinger’s [u]catcher in the rye[/u] continues to influence my approach to writing. i read it in junior high and the characters mirrored our lives as we approached graduation. i used to describe the story as, “a fist full of angst, a spoonful of disappointment, mixed together in an overflowing pot of melancholy…” thankfully, in real life we can add a dash of hope to sweeten before serving (sweeten according to taste).

  6. Thanks everyone for sharing. Those types of books are the kind that don’t come around very often and when they do you can really immerse yourself in them.

  7. I wholeheartedly agree. A Fan’s Notes is incredible and will definitely stick with you for weeks after reading it. Also, I found myself getting sad as I neared the end of The Cider House Rules. John Irving creates such rich characters that one can’t help but feel attached to them.

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