It’s Top Ten Tuesday again and after an agonising day figuring out what my story is going to be for my EMA (external marked assignment) for the OU creative writing course, I think I need some light relief! I finally managed to write my proposal and give it in, although up to this evening I wasn’t clear on what I was going to write about, let alone write the proposal. Such is life – I often do my best work at the very last minute (oops).
This Tuesday is Top Ten Favourite Love Stories (in books, of course). There are so many, that I’ve kind of lost count of all those wonderful love stories I’ve read. Almost every book kind of has a bit of love in it! Anyway, these are my favourites:
1. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. This is possibly my most favourite book ever; every time I read it, I fall in love with it all over again. Its true that when you read a book for the umpteenth time, you find something new in it – when I read it recently I felt things more deeply than I did a few years ago.
2. Persuasion by Jane Austen. Perhaps the more understated and most grown up book out of all her novels, I re-read this again over the holidays and just felt awed by the deep and passionate love between Anne and Captain Wentworth. Its a novel all about second chances, regret and growing up.
3. Stardust by Neil Gaiman. This book has everything a reader could wish for – and it is much darker than the film (which I think, now I’ve read the book, is a little sanitised!). It typifies why I love the writing of Neil Gaiman so much – he writes gothic, but with a dark humour.
4. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Bernieres. This is such a gorgeous and human book. It is different in certain ways to the film, particularly the ending, but I won’t spoil it for you. It is full of passion and heat. And patience.
5. The Jane Austen Book Club by Karen Joy Fowler. As an Austen fan, this is a delight – I love the film too!
6. Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro – the memory I get from this book is just a kind of sadness, and though I can’t remember the specifics, I know if I read it again it will move me to tears.
7. Gone With The Wind by Margaret Mitchell. This made me cry – very few novels move me to tears. I have never felt so much hopelessness at the end of a novel – I know we’re supposed to think that ‘tomorrow is another day’, but it seemed so hopeless! Its a very grown up novel, and I read it when I was about 18 0r 19.
8. The Thornbirds by Colleen McCullough. Another book that moved me to tears, its just so heartbreaking and depressing, although there is some catharsis too.
9. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden. I love this book – its not strictly just a love story, but it is a beautiful rendering of a difficult life.
10. The Time Traveller’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger. I know…I think pretty much everyone has put this as one of their favourites as well as Pride and Prejudice. This was such a slow burner for me – when it ended I cried like a baby. Then I watched the film. Then cried some more.
Image from We Heart It under tag ‘books’.