What novel would you say has made the biggest impact on your life?
John Stienbeck's, "Grapes of Wrath" Is a classic and is considered by many to be one of the top 10 novels in history. I read the novel and would agree with its excellence, but for me that opinion comes not so much from the quality of writing as it does the personal connection I have with the story. My family were immigrants of the dust bowl era, and yes, we were poor Okie's. It wasn't until I read "The Grapes of Wrath" that I truly understood why we were...what we were. The book gave me a tremendous appreciation for my family and turned some of my shame into pride.
Anna Quindlen's Black and Blue. I am sure many people will choose classic literature, but when I read this, I was in an abusive relationship.....reading it helped me to realize that I needed to get out of it it before I ended up like the main character, Fran. It changed my life for the better.
To Kill a Mockingbird. I grew up in a small town where this story may have taken place. I was riveted by the story because my days were carefree pretty much but I of course did not have the experience of going to a courthouse as they did.
hearing the voice of reason in the story made me hopeful that those whose hearts were filled with hate would see how devastating that can be.
Racial issues are a two way street...we all need to work to avoid demonstrating hate behavior to each other...
Determining which book had the biggest impact on hour life is difficult. "Grapes of Wrath" certainly tells a story about a part of our history and the plight of a large number of people. I consider "To Kill a Mockingbird" to be the greatest novel of the 20th century.
However, the book that probably had the biggest impact on my life was "The Old Man and the Sea." by Ernest Hemingway. I saw the movie on the late show one night and read the book a few months later for a school book report. No, I did not identify with the character, but the manner in which Hemingway interwove the story of the Old Man pursuing the elusive fish with the Old Man memories of the past gave an extra boost to my desire and ultimate decision to be a writer. While in school, I read the book almost once a year and even once in college for book reports and each time the book seem to explore a greater depth of the characters. It also showed how you can write a compelling story in a relatively small number of pages. I do not claim to write like Hemingway, but his work, and particularly the book already mentioned played a major part in making my final career choice as a journalist.
Many, many, many books. But just to name a few, "1984," "Brave New World," "The Glass Bead Game," "Far from the Madding Crowd," and "The Mutiny on the Bounty Trilogy."
I know the others have mentioned it but my choice is "To Kill a Mockingbird" by Harper Lee (her only novel). It wonderfully captures life in southern rural, small town America during the Great Depression. The major theme of the novel, racism, makes it a timeless work because of man's enduring intolerance of man. The characterizations are marvelous and the movie, starring Gregory Peck, faithfully mirrors the novel in astounding fashion. The greatest impact it had in my life was because it was the first to bring to my awareness the horror of racism and the depraved way men can treat each other. I feel reading it was the first step I took from childhood into the adult world.
Ah, as a book-lover since I can remember, I've been impacted and influenced by so many over a long life. A list might be more accurate, since at different times of life, different impacts from exposure to books are effectively made, suiting those times.
But perhaps one novel which rises to the fore as having inspired me at a cross-roads of my life is "A Woman Of Substance" by Barbara Taylor Bradford. The example of Emma Harte, the heroine of the story who rose from a troubled background, developed strength and self-reliance, built a major business 'from scratch' and founded a dynasty family is a reminder that anything is possible if one has personal integrity, determination, willingness to work and a core of inner strength.
Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Alborn! Not many books make me cry while reading them, but this one did. There are so many fantastic quotes and lessons in that book about living your life.
"Wish You Well" by David Baldacci is the one that really has stuck with me. It follows a young girl who moves in with her great-grandmother after her father dies and her mother is left in a coma. The girl must adjust to life out of the city into the mountains of Virginia. She also adjust to having responsibilities and helping out her younger brother. I believe in this time and these changes she learns that family is truly a gift and they should never be taken for granted. She also learns that being close to family and having a home base is a good thing for a child and that those memories will shape your life. I now cherish every moment I get to spend with my grandparents and I love the moments I spend just listening to their stories or playing a quiet game of cards. The modern aspects of life that keep us busy are nothing compared to those who truly love you.
1984 by George Orwell is one of the greats. Sadly much of the book has become reality.
the screw tape letters by C.S. Lweis,.... it changed forever the way i view the struggle between right and wrong, angels and demons,... good and evil,... however you want to put it, from what ever theological standpoint,... it CHANGED me,..... and Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury,... it forver altered how i looked at society ...and how i valued the written word.
Montgomerry: Ann from the Green Gables, when I was teenager, it was the first foreign novel we have been allowed to read in the strict communist environment and it had opened the little door for me to strange land and strange people of the past. I have always dreamed to visit Canada and now I am going. My friend sent me the pic of the Ann's house:)
As an adult, Tim Winton's books, Steinbeck's books...sorry hard to pick one:)
"To Kill a Mockingbird", by Harper Lee, I was thrilled that a child from humble means, and ways of life, and in the state of Alabama, could write of her life experiences, and I, to relate so well to some, as my own. I later became a teacher of the handicapped and searched for the figures I saw in the novel, in an attempt to help them. I searched for twenty-five years and in some manner, am still searching.
Boo, and the young man falsely accused, were envisioned by me in many of the classes in which I was to teach, over those years of fond servitude. The sweet Mockingbirds still sing, and as I sit on my front porch, in my mind, i sit in my favorite spot back in a quiet solitude, down South.
My feudal lord !
About high profile Pakistan Ministers wife , how she is treated and how she emerges from her living hill. A must read .
I won't say there was a single novel that made the biggest impact on my life. But the novel that impressed me most was "Gone with the Wind" by Margaret Mitchell, and the reason? Because Margaret's friend said: "Imagine, anyone as silly as Peggy writing a book!" ("Peggy" is Mitchell's nickname).
As most of you may have known, "Gone with the Wind" was a phenomenal success. The novel was for a long time the 2nd best-selling novel in history, with more than 30 million copies sold. An American film adaptation, released in 1939, became the highest-grossing film in Hollywood's history at the time, receiving also a record-breaking number of Academy Awards.
I'd have to say War & Peace. This (albeit enormous) novel taught me so much, and I'm sure it will teach me more with each reread. It covers so many topics, feelings and common dilemmas, and it's written so beautifully.
While it's not one novel, the Lord of the Rings is really deep, and inspires me every time I read it. Lots of times I've lost interest in fiction and it's the Lord of the Rings that rekindles it.
The Swiss Family Robinson, it completely changed my outlook on life, and made me reconsider the trappings of society. I honestly don't think I would have grown up to be the person I am now, without that book.
It discusses religion, disillusionment, and growing up, in my eyes at least.
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