Just one book? Surely not. One book is not enough – that’s more like it!
Different books at different times because we have different facets to our personalities. At any time in day to day life my varied ‘sides’ come to the fore – parent, sibling, child, boss, servant, conservative, flamboyant. For this reason I need different genres of books to fit with these modes or moods.
Can I give you a top 5? Is it bending the rules to choose a series rather than a book?
Childhood Book: I’m not sure it’s exact title but it was a book of myths and legends which I used to borrow from the library. It was filled with stories of 7-league boots, never empty purses, outwitting mythical beasts, fighting dragons and releasing people from curses. Within its pages, the underdog could come out on top, the weak could win a fight; being ugly, old or covered in scales did not mean that a creature didn’t have a great wit or a wonderful heart.
Obviously this book plays a part in my love of the traditional folk tales, which I now twist and make into adult versions.
Teenage Book: The Great Gatsby – F Scott-Fitzgerald
So much is said in so few words, many times I had to re-read lines over again to make sure I’d absorbed every nuance (as with poetry). I loved the single minded, true-love devotion of Jay striving for all the success he enjoyed purely to impress a girl who once loved him. The naivety which so many of the characters display alongside some pure selfishness is fascinating. There are innocents in the plotline and there are casualties alongside a strong social message about money and status.
Sexual Awakening: Black Orchid – Roxanne Carr
A pivotal book in discovering and unleashing my D/s fantasies. The idea of allowing your sexual desires to take over your life, and becoming the plaything for another person really resonated whilst being scary/exciting. The sexual dynamics were fascinating. Based around membership to a sex club with its many play rooms and interpersonal dynamics, we watch our heroine move from being a strong, career focused woman to a submissive, subserviant plaything. It’s absorbing, eye opening – and of course hot!
Classic Book: Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
I love this book more than all her others. I could re-read it anytime. I enjoy all the minor characters with their silly little quirks and foibles. I like the bigger characters for their romances, dramas and social struggles (and gosh society was in a very rigid framework back then). Of course pivotal to it all is how judgemental both Elizabeth and Darcy are – and how our heroine wears her heart on her sleeve and speaks quite forthrightly, at a time when manners, status and money were everything.
I also love all the spin offs P&P has spawned: Lost in Austen / Bride & Prejudice / Lions and Licquorice – even Sense and Sensibility is like a spin-off by the same author!
Modern Book: The Sookie Stackhouse series – Charlaine Harris
The first book Dead Until Dark really hooked me, so I’ll pick that. I know I’m cheating again! This entire series is so good, continuing the storyline and introducing new characters/sidekicks for our telepath Sookie, along with challenges and enemies. My favourite character being Eric, the mysogenist, horny old school vampire who is head of his ‘nest’ and always trying to get horizontal with Sookie.
Its no secret that vampires hold a fascination for me, and I very much enjoy werewolves and re-animators too. There is plenty of hot action between the pages (not as much as the TV show would suggest) while the plot lines are strong and fast paced. The minute Sookie resolves one trouble, she’s back in danger again. The jewel in the crown is the concept that Elvis was made over as a vampire! Sadly the re-animation was not very successful so he doesn’t like to be reminded of who he was.
I’m sorry I couldn’t limit myself to just one book. I’m not a great person for re-reading books, I generally need the new, a surprise element to keep me involved. A book needs to be pretty clever with its words and structure to grab me and draw me back in a 2nd or 3rd time, so that was my criteria in making my 5 choices.