Wednesday, 2 February 2011

GROUNDHOG (BOOK)DAY

Road Trip Wednesday is a ‘Blog Carnival,’ where YA Highway's contributors post a weekly writing - or reading - related question and answer it on our own blogs. You can hop from destination to destination and get everybody's unique take on the topic.

We'd love for you to participate! 


I think I've actually managed to find out the REAL question for this week's Road Trip Wednesday in time this week - one of the advantages of Twitter. And the topic is:

It's Groundhog Day! Pretend you're Bill Murray in the 1993 movie-- what book would you read over & over forever?

Frankly, the idea of never being allowed to read a new book again would probably make me spend the first few hundred endless repeating days curled up in a corner crying (shut up, I love new books, okay?).

But following that, presuming I could chose just one book, I would spend some serious time in contemplation. As long-time blog readers know, I am a champion of re-reading. I re-read pretty much every book that I liked. So it's tough for me to isolate just one re-readable book. Should I pick a really loooong one? I probably shouldn't pick one that makes me cry every time, right? Argh, choices, choices!

After much thought, my shortlist goes like this:
  1. The Curse of Chalion by Lois McMaster Bujold. I've already re-read this book about twenty times, I think. Although it is a story full of suffering, tragedy and darkness, it is also about the power of love, faith and redemption, and I can't express how deep down HAPPY it makes me. Problem: I practically already know it by heart.
  2. Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones. Again, I must have read this book twenty or more times. It is a riddle within a puzzle within an enigma, and people's theories on the plot and characters are endless. It still makes me think deeply each time I read it, and it still makes me laugh. A good choice. Problem: it's so short!
  3. NightWatch by Terry Pratchett. I've re-read this book a lot less times than the ones above, because it is a HARD read. It's multilayered, twisty and in many places, downright grim. It's also funny, as is PTerry's trademark, but the humour is black, black, black. I love and admire this book in every way. Problem: Blubbing. Every. Single. Time.
  4. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. What can I say? It's one of the best books ever written. It's moving. It's funny. It's impeccably written. It's reasonably long. It features probably the most memorable characters ever written. Problem: Um...there isn't one.
So there you have it. If I had to read one book over and over for the rest of my life, it would be Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. But don't blame me if I start wearing bonnets and addressing people as 'Sir' and 'Ma'am', after a bit...Still, if I'm stuck in the same day, they'll never get around to putting me in the psychiatric ward, right?

Darcy and Elizabeth FTW! And the the way, if you've not yet read one of more of the books on the shortlist, I urge you to run to your local library or bookshop and do so at once! After all, YOU'RE not stuck in Groundhog (Book)Day.

27 comments:

Amanda Hannah said...

Nice, diverse list!
I have got to read Howl's. I've been meaning to for years!

Zoë Marriott said...

I highly recommend pretty much everyone on DWJ's backlist. And the great thing about her is that her work is so varied that even if you don't like one book, you can still love a dozen others.

KO: The Insect Collector said...

Wow- great list. I don't know them all... but I've been wanting to read HMC since I saw the movie. Darcy and Elizabeth are fantastic. Always.

Zoë Marriott said...

I love the anime, but it's not NEARLY as good as the book. IMO, anyway! Howl and Sophie are probably my favourite fictional couple after Darcy and Elizabeth, in fact!

danya said...

Love Howl's Moving Castle - it's my favorite DWJ book of the ones I've read so far. And P&P would without a doubt make my shortlist (I don't know that I could narrow it down to a single one!)

Zoë Marriott said...

Not sure I could either, really. My shortlist would probably have been radically different on a different day. And as soon as I posted, about five more books popped into my head. Where do you stop?

Sarah said...

Love Pride and Prejudice! I'm a little terrified at the idea of reading only a few books for the rest of my life. Nooooooo!

Jennifer Hoffine said...

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE is right up there for me too. You're right, most memorable characters ever...and her dialogue...amazing.

Alicia Gregoire said...

Totally diverse list. I love how everyone's list is so different. :)

Zoë Marriott said...

Jennifer: Right. No one does dialogue like Austen. I feel as if everytime I read her books I learn something new.

Alicia: I suppose it says something about all of our inner landscapes...only thing is, like I said above, on a different day we might all have completely different lists!

Isabel said...

The first two on the list look really intruiging. And I love books that make me cry. (The Sweet Far Thing *Sob*.)

Zoë Marriott said...

There, there, Isabel. Distract yourself by finally reading Howl's Moving Castle.

Isabel said...

I'll have to look for it at Borders. If not, I'll order it. But I will read it! Sometime. After Fire I'm going to read Unearthly. It looks really intenssse.
I know, I know, I'm reading Fire extremely slowly. I don't know why - I mean, I can't find any fault in it, it's just not... gripping me. I guess it's also 'cause lately I've been writing nonstop, and it's been taking the place of the time I usually spend reading.

Oh yes, wish me luck on Chapter Three. It's giving me grief. Chapter Two went really well, but now I have to write this scene that for some reason is really difficult for me. It's very frustrating. We writers always have that chapter that just doesn't seem to work out. I hope this is it and that my next few chapters are going to be a lot easier going.

Megha said...

I'd put DotF on my list. I love it :D.

I just got a letter from the local library that DotF is available! YAY! I'm gonna read it for the second/third time.

Tracey Neithercott said...

I'm very ashamed to say that the only one on your list that I've read is Pride and Prejudice. I love it!

I think I need to add your others to my TBR list, too!

Bekah Tuggy said...

The one I would choose, hands-down, is Lewis' "Til We Have Faces." Subtle plot; deep characters; deeper meta-story; a startling glimpse into the human and the divine. I feel like I know myself and the universe better every time I read it...and am reduced to healing tears.

Bekah Tuggy said...

...having said that, I'm a big fan of P&P too. =)

Alison Miller said...

Excellent choices! I am not a re-reader, but I still had four!

Zoë Marriott said...

Isabel: Very good luck. Chances are that your difficult chapter will end up being the best one in the book!

Megha: I hope you enjoy reading DotF again.

Tracey: Definitely; I'm always hoping people will find a book they love through my recommendations. It's why I'm so bossy!

Bekah: That is a heck of a glowing review, there. And I've never read it! I think I'll seek it out now - thanks!

Isabel said...

Zoe: You really think so? I was actually just joking about that with Alex. I highly doubt it. It's a complete disaster. But I'd love to believe you. Let's cross our fingers. :)

Ben Langhinrchs said...

I have to admit, I've never read (or even heard of) The Curse of Chalion, but the others are excellent, so I'll be sure to check it out.

Zoë Marriott said...

Alison: Not a re-reader? Agh. I'll forgive you. But it's not easy!

Isabel: Yep, dead serious. Did I do a blog post about that before? Maybe I should...

Ben: I really do highly recommend it! And if you like it, there's a whole galaxy more of books by Lois McMaster Bujold to explore.

Isabel said...

Zoe: Please post about it!!!!!!!! That might just be all I need. And I really need help right now!!!!!

Leila Austin said...

Pride and Prejudice is an excellent choice!

I love Howl's Moving Castle too :-)

Zoë Marriott said...

Thanks, Leila. Trust my taste and try out the other two, as well!

Isabel said...

Yesterday, Alex gave me the advice for Chapter Three to just break everything down into pieces so little that all I'd really have to do from there is flesh it out. I did that, and it worked! Now Chapter Three may just be my best chapter so far! You were right! Now I'm off to write some more before I have to go to school.

Bekah Tuggy said...

I'd love to know what you think if you do take a crack at Till We Have Faces, Zoe!

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