Login |  Register




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 10 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Five books you MUST read
PostPosted: 090408 00:52 
Interactive Blogger
Interactive Blogger
User avatar
Joined: 090226 11:31
Posts: 306
Location: Japan
Same idea as the food thread, though I meant to post this one first. Post five books that you think everyone should read at some point in their life, even though they may come out hating them.

That's an important distinction here, for me -- you want to recommend books that people should read, regardless of whether they like them or not, rather than books that you think people will like.


[Reveal] Spoiler: The Bible
This book has been amazingly, incredibly influential on the modern world, whether or not you espouse some brand of Christianity. For that reason alone, it bears reading. I've read two versions -- the Good News Bible (Lutheran) and the King James Bible.

There are so many Christians around the world (and in America) that this book still influences a huge amount of influence on people in general and on culture. A large part of that is because there's sort of a religious storm brewing; a lot of pent-up anger at Christianity (deserved or not) and religious conflicts elsewhere in the world. Lots of people jumping on the bandwagon and screaming phrases without knowing what they're talking about -- on all sides.

The Koran would also be a good book to read, but I haven't gotten around to it yet, so I can't recommend it in good faith... but on the general principle of the matter, everyone should read that as well.


[Reveal] Spoiler: Stranger in a Strange Land (Robert A. Heinlein)
This is one of my favorite books in general, despite being a science fiction book. It deals with so many topics on so many levels; this is a book with something for everyone, whether they come away from it disgusted, intrigued, or thinking that it's a pile of crap. All you have to do is read it. This book, and other adult novels by Heinlein, were very influential on me as a kid.


[Reveal] Spoiler: The Fountainhead (Ayn Rand)
Continuing on the trend of books with a philosophical bent -- this book is almost like an anthem of individuality. Ayn Rand is perhaps better-known for another book commonly used as a doorstop: Atlas Shrugged. I generally prefer this book since it's more readable and less preachy. There's a long literary history of authors searching for the "dark and gritty reality" by making characters who are tortured, isolated caricatures of "real human beings". This isn't one of them.

There's something to be said for reading a book about a person you can actually admire in ways, who succeeds because he works for it and not because he's just some lucky guy.


[Reveal] Spoiler: The Republic (Plato)
This book is the foundation of a lot of things that we take for granted in modern philosophy and society. It's worth the read, even though it's hard going at times. I have to admit, I was trying to decide whether I should list The Republic or Confessions, by St. Augustine...


[Reveal] Spoiler: A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court (Mark Twain)
I had a hard time choosing a fifth book. I ended up choosing this book because it's and interesting and witty satire that manages to poke a lot of fun at culture and society without ruining the entertainment of the story itself. I don't feel as strongly about this one as the previous four, but I still think that it bears reading, whether people "get it" or not.


Last edited by Scott on 090408 01:34, edited 1 time in total.

Profile  Offline
 
 Post subject: Re: Three books you MUST read
PostPosted: 090408 01:26 
Legendary Overfiend
Legendary Overfiend
User avatar
Joined: 090226 11:19
Posts: 527
Location: Terminal Dogma
Three?

_________________
I see what you did there.
Image


Profile  Offline
 
 Post subject: Re: Five books you MUST read
PostPosted: 090408 01:34 
Interactive Blogger
Interactive Blogger
User avatar
Joined: 090226 11:31
Posts: 306
Location: Japan
I screwed up. I was wavering between three and five at various points in the post. Fixed the topic, though.


Profile  Offline
 
 Post subject: Re: Five books you MUST read
PostPosted: 090408 15:41 
Forum Underling
Forum Underling
User avatar
Joined: 090326 04:00
Posts: 69
Location: Between atei and nemesis
Fuck Plato. This be Xenophon territory, yo.

_________________
"Sophocles wrote about men as they should be, but Euripides about them as they are" -Aristotle, Poetics 1460b35


Profile  Offline
 
 Post subject: Re: Five books you MUST read
PostPosted: 090409 01:22 
Legendary Overfiend
Legendary Overfiend
User avatar
Joined: 090226 11:19
Posts: 527
Location: Terminal Dogma
I'm having trouble thinking of books that I think everyone should read, for their merit, regardless of whether they enjoy it or not. I have trouble thinking of those sorts of things in any subject - even music, because there really is no "universal" compulsory list. I mean, for example, I could recommend some philosophy texts, but not everybody even really feels philosophy, and the experience would be lost on them... The only book I came up with that I thought had enough merit to warrant recommending to people blindly was The Scarlet Letter, because I think the book does a good job of making the point that you're allowed to follow your own rules, not society's, and that you can define your own happiness. It made an impact on me, at least.

_________________
I see what you did there.
Image


Profile  Offline
 
 Post subject: Re: Five books you MUST read
PostPosted: 090409 07:54 
Interactive Blogger
Interactive Blogger
User avatar
Joined: 090226 11:31
Posts: 306
Location: Japan
Well, it doesn't have to be truly universal -- you can just list five books that you think would help widen the worldview of any receptive reader, whether they come out liking the book or not. Another good example that I seriously considered was Lolita.


Profile  Offline
 
 Post subject: Re: Five books you MUST read
PostPosted: 090409 08:28 
Legendary Overfiend
Legendary Overfiend
User avatar
Joined: 090226 11:19
Posts: 527
Location: Terminal Dogma
Scott wrote:
Lolita

Now there's a book I've been wanting to read for the longest time... :lol:

I guess I'll try to think of some more, but no promises. After all, I don't have the reading experience you do. :P

_________________
I see what you did there.
Image


Profile  Offline
 
 Post subject: Re: Five books you MUST read
PostPosted: 090501 05:56 
Legendary Overfiend
Legendary Overfiend
User avatar
Joined: 090226 11:19
Posts: 527
Location: Terminal Dogma
Scott wrote:
Another good example that I seriously considered was Lolita.

Consider it on my list. :nod:

_________________
I see what you did there.
Image


Profile  Offline
 
 Post subject: Re: Five books you MUST read
PostPosted: 090502 14:07 
Forum Underling
Forum Underling
User avatar
Joined: 090326 04:00
Posts: 69
Location: Between atei and nemesis
The Iliad and the Odyssey. Maybe they're not the best stories ever, maybe they're given more credit than their due, but their profound impact on Western culture simply cannot be overemphasized.

_________________
"Sophocles wrote about men as they should be, but Euripides about them as they are" -Aristotle, Poetics 1460b35


Profile  Offline
 
 Post subject: Re: Five books you MUST read
PostPosted: 090502 20:37 
Legendary Overfiend
Legendary Overfiend
User avatar
Joined: 090226 11:19
Posts: 527
Location: Terminal Dogma
Monkee wrote:
The Iliad and the Odyssey.

I never did get around to reading those. I started The Iliad one summer many years ago, but...well, I guess fate conspired against me.

_________________
I see what you did there.
Image


Profile  Offline
 

Display posts from previous:  Sort by  

Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 10 posts ] 


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests

Panel

Top You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum
Search for:
Jump to:  
 cron
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group
Dizayn Ercan Koc