Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Did I tell you I love to read?

This is the image that author Jeri Massi chose to represent me in her sidebar links. I like it. And she got it right--I'm a confirmed bookworm. Reading is, and has always been, one of the chief joys of my life.

(By the way, you can read Jeri's A Standard Christian online as an ongoing serial, or buy it in its entirety. And her Valkyries books are excellent fiction reads. Read my review of Valkyries 1 and 2 here or my interview with Jeri here.) (UPDATE: Apparently, "A Standard Christian" ends its online run tomorrow, and you'll have to buy the book online if you want to read it.)

Anyhoo--back to reading. In honor of their tenth anniversary, Amazon.com has come out with their 25 bestselling authors (hat tip to Tim Challies). Voracious reader that I am, I've read surprisingly few of them. Maybe it's because I'm not really a bandwagon person---I never feel the need to rush out and buy a bestseller just because it's a bestseller, or because it's on Oprah's book list.

Amazon's Top 25 Bestselling Authors

I'll boldface the ones I have read:

1. J.K. Rowling--Nope, I haven't succumbed to the Harry Potter craze. Just doesn't appeal to me--if I want fantasy, I'll re-read the Chronicles of Narnia.
2. Spencer Johnson
3. Nora Roberts --Several years back, I went on a Nora Roberts spree at the library. I'd have to say she's one of the best of her kind, although any sort of spirituality is markedly missing from her books.
4. Dan Brown--Ah yes, the "DaVinci Code" guy. Not interested.
5. Dr. Seuss --Love him.
6. John Grisham --Read several, and liked them. But I think there are several Christian fiction writers that are every bit as good as him, and some even better.
7. Stephen King--I must admit, I've been fascinated by some of the movie versions of his books, but I've never read any of the actual books. To me, it would be kind of like saying, "OK evil, here's an engraved imitation to come dwell in my mind." (Why that's not true of the movies, I don't know.)
8. J.R.R. Tolkien --Read the Lord of the Rings trilogy, but not until just a couple of years ago. I wanted to see what all the fuss was about, and wanted to read the books BEFORE watching the movies. I found the movies were remarkably faithful to the books. I really liked the books, but I found I prefer the style of Tolkien friend and contemporary C.S. Lewis. (I really got bored and annoyed with all the long "songs" in the Tolkien books, for instance.)
9. Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins --Nothing against these men; I'm sure they're fine Christians. But after the first couple of "Left Behind" books, I lost interest...and it amazes me how long they've been able to drag the Tribulation out.
10. Jim Collins
11. Phil McGraw
12. Robert Atkins
13. C.S. Lewis --Oh, yes. On the short list of my favorite authors. I discovered Narnia at about age 8 or 9, and have never looked back. I'm hoping the upcoming movies do the books justice.
14. Mitch Albom
15. Ken Blanchard
16. James Patterson--I think I read one of these books..."Kiss the Girls"? Very disturbing.
17. Stephen R. Covey--My son worked for Franklin Covey for a while, and he did become very organized and motivated at that time! I've never read "Seven Habits of Highly Effective People," but one habit has stuck with me: Be proactive. I'm not usually, but I try to be! :)
18. Mary Pope Osborne
19. Marcus Buckingham
20. Lemony Snicket
21. John C. Maxwell
22. Janet Evanovich
23. Robert T. Kiyosaki
24. Arthur Agatson
25. Tom Clancy--I loved the movies "Patriot Games" and "The Hunt for Red October," but I've only actually read "The Sum of All Fears." And to be honest, it was tough going at some points. While reading a fiction book, you shouldn't have to say to yourself, "Well,I guess I should really read more of the book." It should be a case of having difficulty putting it down.

How about you? Read any of the authors on this list? Can you recommend them? Let me know in my comments section or on your own blog.

Oh, and speaking of Narnia...

Miss O'Hara pointed me in the direction of this excellent article by John J. Miller. Good stuff.

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