Where, oh where, do I begin?!
Without wanting to dwell massively – June has not been the kindest of months so far. Nothing hugely untoward has occurred, just the universe throwing some bumps in for it’s own perverse viewing pleasure.
Because of said bumps it means I have fallen behind on my carefully constructed blog posting schedule. I’ve also had to take note of the fact that I am not managing my time properly and in the grand scheme of it all can’t achieve everything that I want to achieve.
This means that, instead of trying to achieve everything, I’m going to try and achieve something. Just not everything. Does that even make sense? Not a jot? Yeah, I realise that.
I really enjoy participating in Top 5 Tuesday which is hosted by Shanah @ Bionic Book Worm but have come to the conclusion that I can’t participate every Tuesday. Instead I have decided to participate when I can and frankly, that’s just as good.
One of the topics Shanah asked us to consider was our Top 10 All Time Favourites. Sure, this was supposed to go up on the 11th June but hey, better late than never right?
I am aware that I say that a lot.
So here I go bucking the rules like the cheeky minx I am.
- This post is clearly the White Rabbit as it is late, late, late
- This post is not even being posted on a Tuesday, let alone the correct Tuesday
- At no point did Shanah say it has to be our Top 10 books of all time
So here is a collection of my Top 10 Favourites of some random description!
It’s very important for me to tell you that this book holds up as one of the greatest literary creations of all time.
Sure, I first read The Jolly Postman when I was 7 years old but I went out to purchase a copy of this book (plus its seasonally themed companion, The Jolly Christmas Postman) a couple of years ago – not for any friends with children – but for myself. Why? Because this book is a gem.
Our titular postman travels through a land where fairy tale characters are real and through rhyme and some delightful illustrations we spend a day delivering post to said characters. Bonus: the letters are interactive with envelopes as pages.
Great fun for anyone aged 4 to 34.
I don’t think there is ever an age limit on reading YA or children’s books and if I picked my favourite YA book it would be from my adult reading years which is no fun.
I wanted to go back in time to when I was 16 years old and to the books I read then and what my favourites were and honestly whenever I think of a book Monster is the first that comes to mind.
I binge read Christopher Pike books like they were going out of fashion and in some way they were. His books truly feel like 90’s books and I think if people were to throw words around now they would call him and his works ‘problematic.’ But do you know what? I friggin’ loved them. They were dark and sinister and sometimes even had (non descriptive) sex in which blew my innocent teen mind.
This book is twisted and horrific and would make for fabulous Netflix viewing.
I’ve already spoken at length about The Handmaid’s Tale and how it’s impacted me so I won’t go into great detail here. If there was ever a book that still gives me pause of thought it remains this one.
Studying Macbeth for my GCSE’s (UK qualifications for 16 year old’s) surprisingly only made me love it more. As a teen who clearly loved dark and gothic things, a play with witches, murder, ghosts and betrayal meant I was in for a good time.
(Artist: Abigail Larson)
I have mentioned narrative poem’s, albeit briefly, in a recent post of mine as I spoke about The Rime of the Ancient Mariner and The Divine Comedy as some of the oldest pieces of work I’ve read.
If you’d read that post you’d be forgiven in thinking that I’m not a lover of narrative poetry which is untrue. In fact I happen to love the form and my favourite is The Highwayman with its themes of doomed romance, self sacrifice and revenge with even hints of the supernatural creeping in.
It also sounds awesomely gothic when read out loud.
The Bloody Chamber probably receives a boon because it is all retelling’s of classic fairy tales and I love retelling’s, fairy tales and Angela Carter. To be fair it is stunning, sensually descriptive piece of work that deconstructs the fairy tales within its collection and rebuilds them, often with a feminist viewpoint that highlights the strength, compassion and dangerous side of its female protagonists.
It feels remiss to say that I love fairy tales and then not include one on this list so here is The Little Mermaid, a tale that has managed to yoink me by the heartstrings. For those not familiar with the Hans Christian Andersen let me just say this – this is not the Disney version.
I’m not going to go into too much detail because I hope to feature this on a future Fairy Tale Friday at some point.
I don’t know what to say about Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase and Fable only that I often pretend I’m a writer and when I’m doing all that pretending this book comes in handy with the kind of stuff I pretend to write about.
A copy never strays too far from my side and if I reach out my arm right now I can touch it. Don’t let the tiny little image fool you, this is a beast of a book.
I’m now going to open the book and find three random things to tell you about because the fabulous thing about this resource is that everything is somehow random, yet interesting (ok, in my opinion). You can call these your three new facts of the day if you so wish.
- Graceless florin – the first English silver florin struck in 1989, called graceless florin because the usual ‘Dei Gratia’ (by the grace of God) was missing. Some attributed the cholera outbreak of that year to this new coin.
- Serpentine – long curved lake in Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens which was created when a small river was damned. The idea of which belonged to a consort of George II. Famous for swimming, boating, skating and unfortunately, suicides.
- Albion – an ancient and poetic name for Britain possibly from the Celtic, ‘alp’ which means ‘crag.’ In legend a giant son of Neptune named Albion discovered the country and ruled over it for 44 years. Another story tells how the 50 daughters of the king of Syria (the eldest called, Albia) were all married on the same day and all murdered their husbands on their wedding night. They were set adrift as punishment and reached an isle that they named for the eldest sister.
Sometimes we don’t know why we like things, we just do.
e.e. cummings is a peculiar poet and he often has peculiar poems but the thing with poetry is that you like it or you don’t.
Honestly, anyone that refers to the world in spring as ‘mud luscious and puddle wonderful’ is onto a winner for me.
Yeah, I love Neil Gaiman. He’s a fantastic story teller and all round awesome dude.
Let me know your thoughts, feelings, hopes, dreams, fears or just what you had for breakfast in the comments below. Also, if you have something to say about my Top 10 Fav’s that’s good too!