I remembered this weekend how in “The Book Thief“, Liesel kept her book always at her side. And it made me wonder. I do have some novels in my bookshelf that I thought reading them was a waste a time, such as “The Postman Always Rings Twice“, or “All the Light We Cannot See” but I still wouldn’t donate them. They are part of my reading journey and even though I didn’t appreciate them, they still made me in some way more spiritually rich. So I actually love all the books I own. But do I have a volume that I wouldn’t let go for anything in the world? Well, it was very hard to pick just one, but I managed to arrive at a conclusion.
The struggle of picking just one book
After a long battle between Tolstoy’s “Anna Karenina” and George RR Martin’s “A Song of Ice and Fire“, I decided to pick neither, because they both have multiple volumes so they don’t feet my criteria. I really like all the books Fredrik Backman has wrote, so I thought that my answer will lie in one of them, but it didn’t. Then my eyes fell on my very beautiful edition of “Pride and Prejudice” and thought that I can’t imagine life without Mr. Darcy in it. I was almost sure that this was my top pick, but something didn’t feel right. So I did what every normal Reading Badger would do: ask the fellow Badgers what they think about the subject. This is what I got from them:
Pinky Badger chose “Oscar and The Lady in Pink” by Éric-Emmanuel Schmitt because of the really intense emotions this novel transmits and because it can be read at any age and have the exact same feelings.
Foxy Badger, being probably the biggest Irvine Welsh Romanian fan, found the question to be very easy. Of course, the one book she couldn’t live without is “Trainspotting“.
Since neither of my friends helped me I did what I do every time I need inspiration: ask people of Reddit. Let me tell you what I found out
Example of books that people could never let go
I love to talk to the people of Reddit. We are all so different and there nobody cares about social norms. They are brutally honest. Some of the answers I’ve got were regarding series but I took them in considerations. So here is what I found out about from random people:
– 25% could never let go of the Tolkien’s series “Lord of the Rings”
– 25% will keep at least one volume of Harry Potter
– 20% will keep any book written by Fyodor Dostoyevsky, but prefer “The Brothers Karamazov”
– 17% can’t imagine life without a copy of the Bible
– 5% want to always have a copy of “The Lord of the Flies” near
– 3% can’t let go of their “Master and Margarita” copy (this answer really got me thinking)
– 2% prefer most than anything “The Counte of Monte Cristo” by Dumas
– 1% want always to have a philosophy book written by Marcel Proust
– 1% think that any kind of story you feel like reading you can find in “A Thousand and One Nights”
– 1% need a Stephen King story in their life.
So where do all these answers leave me?
What is the book that I always want to keep close and why
After a tormenting weekend, I finally figured it out. The one book that I could never let go is “Flowers for Algernon” by Daniel Keyes. Probably it is not even my favorite novel I’ve ever read, but it has a feature that no other has. Every time I see it I am reminded how beautiful life is and how important is to enjoy it and live it as its full potential. So, yes, I don’t want ever to lose it
So what is your personal pick?