Top Ten Tuesday
This started as a thing for book bloggers. As of January 2018, the prompts are now being hosted at:
I'm beginning this post with a Happy Thanksgiving to all of my American friends (and people in any other country who celebrate it this month)! Due to this, the Top 10 Tuesday team have nominated this week's post to be: 10 books you're thankful for.
I did resist the initial response of: All of them. That's a joke and not entirely true anyway. But I have found ten books/series which definitely fit this post. Some are quite meaningful to my life, so some parts of this may get a bit deep/heavy. I'll do my best to poke fun at myself. :)
1. C. S. Lewis- The Chronicles of Narnia
I don't have much to say for this choice. These were so influential to me and meant a lot growing up- and still do. I will re-read them every now and then. My favourites are 'The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe', 'The Horse and His Boy', 'The Magician's Nephew' and 'The Voyage of the Dawn Treader'.
2. J. K. Rowling- Harry Potter
Another series needing no introduction. I'm a proud Hufflepuff. I began these when I was 11 years old. Hermione Granger and later Luna Lovegood were and are my favourite characters of the entire thing because I relate to them so much. I can't even begin to express how much it meant to find someone like Hermione at that age, who was so much of me too. I plan to write a post on these two at some point in the future.
3. Sarah J Maas- A Court of Mist and Fury
Now for anyone who knows me well, it doesn't come as a surprise that I read a ton of YA/NA. I love this entire series (what we have of it so far) but this book, in particular, means a lot. As well as being a great read and having characters who I would be best friends with in a heartbeat, ACOMAF pretty much saved my sanity during my final year of university, helped me understand my anxiety and depression more, and let me know it was ok to break down what seemed like every ten minutes. In my childhood, I really longed for Narnia and Hogwarts to be real. I still do- and now the Night Court/Velaris makes that list too.
4. Lucy Daniels- Animal Ark/Nine Lives
Way back when I was 6 years old, I announced that I wanted to be a vet when I grew up. The main characters in the Animal Ark books own/help out in a vets surgery. You can see where I'm going with this, right? I never collected them all as a child- there were SO MANY, but the ones I do have still have a place on my childhood shelf. The author has written many books under different pseudonyms, but another childhood favourite of mine was the Nine Lives series were about a litter of nine kittens and were adorable.
About ten years later, I realised being a vet wasn't for me, though my wanting to work with animals has never left. But even though I eventually took a different route into the animal industry, I have books like these to thank for letting me realise my dreams. :)
5. Erin Morgenstern- The Night Circus
This book doesn't hold a specific or significant meaning for me, but it blew my mind when I read it this summer. The way all the little details were slotted together and scope of the characters made it such a different and fun read. Of course, I personally loved the various different references to various mythology and literature as it's something I'm interested in.
Then there was the fact that a lot of the characters loved reading- so much so that they often had issues finding room for their books...
...which isn't like me...at all.
I'll just...walk away slowly.
6. Jennifer Mathieu- Moxie
This book is quite recent in only having been released in September. It highlights feminism so well, what it really means and how different issues are still relevant in various areas of today's society. As a feminist myself, I loved the way it didn't throw this fact in your face and made point of the fact that we all get it wrong sometimes.
Side note- I still prefer the American cover to this UK one, but then pink just really isn't my favourite colour.
You can see my original review here.
7. Enid Blyton- Malory Towers
Ok, so I'm taking you back to my childhood and I'm not even going to pretend this was anything other than special to me. I collected so many Enid Blyton books and still have them all! However, Malory Towers was my school outside of my real school. And it was the first reason I had for wanting to go to Cornwall one day- a chance I'm still waiting on.
While I didn't really enjoy much of my time at high school- the library there was a second home and I even helped out there in my final year- Malory made me wish I could go there, even though it's a boarding school. The fact that Darrell and her friends were just kids growing up as I was, with some of the same issues made it important. As with Harry Potter, I related to several of the characters and it made me understand myself better. The covers for the original six books are the ones I have and it took a while finding pictures, as I don't think these versions are in print any longer. Mine- especially the first two- are very creased and held together my love for them.
However, the biggest reason Malory Towers has a lasting impact on me was because it was from this where I began to start writing properly. My first few attempts at 'novels' were ideas taken from my favourite authors of the time and Enid Blyton inspired much of this, thanks to the Famous Five originally. Yet my first proper series was set at a boarding school, only mine had animals and various activities I wish I could have done in my real school life.
And yes- I have kept that early series. However, nowadays I'm happy to report that my writing had improved dramatically. :) But I don't think I would be without some of those childhood books.
Therefore, a shout out to my parents for reading them with me early on, not minding the weird questions I sometimes ask you as research and for not complaining too loudly about all the time/money I spend in bookshops. :D
8. Lauren Brooke- Heartland
This is another series which means a lot to me. As with Animal Ark, the Heartland books were written under a pseudonym but by the same person. The series is aimed at teenagers and young adults and deals with lots of more serious issues like love, death, grief, kindness and finding out who you are and want to be. I can't, as of yet, ride but one day I hope to change that, though my love of horses has always been there, thanks to my granddad I think, who had his own, ect.
There are 20 books in the series, but are quite short in page count. While each book has the potential to make me laugh and cry, my favourite, and the one I found this statement the most true for, has to be Every New Day. The tagline for the books is 'Healing horses, healing hearts'. This is shown many times over, but it certainly was true for me at various times throughout my teenage years.
And the books have been adapted into the long-running Canadian show starring Amber Marshall and Graham Wardle, which is now Canada's longest running family show, as it's in its 11th series.
Meanwhile, over here in the UK, I'm way behind as the channel which had started showing the first series or two about eight years ago stopped one year. Therefore, I'm still trying to find them and I think one day I'm just going to bulk buy the box sets from Amazon.
Problem solved. :)
9. Louise Gornall- Under Rose-Tainted Skies
While this book doesn't completely relate to me too much, I'm adding it for the fantastic mental health rep it has. There is no 'love cures all' when the main character meets her first boyfriend. Therapy is considered a good thing. I read it in four hours and I was ecstatic at finding something with such good mental health rep.
Seriously, if you haven't read it yet, please do so ASAP!!
I read this earlier in the year as well and you can read my full review here.
10. Anna Sewell- Black Beauty
I'm adding this because it's classic and I don't know anyone who doesn't love this book- unless you don't like horses? It also made real progress and improvement for the welfare of horses at the time, which is always a win.
That's it for today's Top 10 Tuesday post. What are some of the books you're thankful for? Did any make this list?
As always, all the best and happy reading. :)