View Full Version : Desert Island Books

Penguin Queen
07-01-2007, 10:11 PM
The idea is that you're shipwrecked on a desert island (lifted from a programme on BBC Radio 4, where it's about eight pieces of music rather than books, Desert Island Discs (http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/factual/desertislanddiscs.shtml)). But just before the ship sinks, you get to pick your eight favourite books off the shelves to take with you to castaway-ness.
Also, you get to pick and take with you a luxury, and one piece of music.

My books:

1. "Der flammende Baum", Katherine Allfrey.
She was a German writer of children's books. The story in this one ("The burning tree") is based on a very obscure Welsh myth about a tree that magically burns for one of the Twelve Nights every year, and an orphan serving girl who hears about it and walks all the way from one end of Wales to the other to see it. And when she does, she ends up in an cursed city that only she can help to liberate. I love the character, Gwenny, she is somebody who "owns nothing and desires nothing" except for this magical thing. :)

2. "His Dark Materials (http://www.amazon.co.uk/His-Dark-Materials-Boxed-set/dp/1407104160/ref=pd_bowtega_1/202-3553694-0985457?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1183311793&sr=1-1)" Trilogy, Philip Pullmann
I think these could stand re-reading quite a few times, and I'd still come across new stuff.

3. Box set of Harry Potter, J.K. Rowling
Not nearly as complex & deep as Pullman, but wonderful for taking one's mind off things, and I think I will want that, stuck on my desert island!

4. Life Sentence: Selected Poems (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Life-Sentence-Selected-Nina-Cassian/dp/0393307212/ref=sr_1_2/202-3553694-0985457?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1183312046&sr=1-2) of Nina Cassian
She's one of my favourite poets, and I noticed last year when I was away in Buenos Aires for just seven months how much I missed reading poetry in a language I really speak well. (Poerty in Spanish goes mostly over my head yet.)

5. The Oxford History of Byzantium (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Oxford-History-Byzantium-Cyril-Mango/dp/0198140983/ref=sr_1_2/202-8898687-3197422?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1181128318&sr=1-2) by Cyril Mango
Because it's something Ive always wanted to read - I love Byzantium - but dont really get round to in everyday life.

6. Cielo de Tango (http://www.elsaosorio.com/Untitled-%2011e.htm) by Elsa Osorio
I havent read this one yet, but it's in Spanish, and I would like to have something to practice my Spanish on; and a new (ie. unread) book; and this one is about cities and tango and passion and wine and coffee, all stuff I'd miss dreadfully while stuck on my desert island,so at least I want to be able to read about them.

7. Crocodile Soup (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Crocodile-Soup-Julia-Darling/dp/186230050X/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/202-3553694-0985457?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1183312969&sr=8-1) by Julia Darling
Another one I havent read yet but am greatly looking forward to. I like the stuff Ive heard and read by her so far (radio plays and short stories), and I love what she does with language.[/URL]

8. A box set of the Stephanie Plum novels by [URL="http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_ss_b/026-4577760-8955667?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=janet+evanovich&Go.x=0&Go.y=0&Go=Go"]Janet Evanovich (http://www.elsaosorio.com/Untitled-%2011e.htm)
Because a girl's gotta have some fun too.

For my piece of music I want "Balada para mi muerte (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JytXR0qzsvs)", which is a wonderfully over-the-top dramatic tango about dying in Buenos Aires with one's coat draped over one's shoulders, the penultimate whisky left undrunk, and dying on the stroke of six, como los que saben morir, like those do who know how to die. I love it, and it will cheer me up, because I fully intend to die that way; and not stuck on a desert island in the middle of nowhere.

And for my luxury, I want one of those Italian metal espresso machines, and a load of coffee beans, and a coffee grinder, and cream and sugar. And a heap of writing paper and a fistful of pens. And a supply of cigarettes.
And I dont care if thats cheating. :D

What would be yours?

07-04-2007, 04:38 AM
My Books:
The Shadow of the Wind (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0143034901/ref=nosim/completereview) by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. This story inspires me to write.
I Know This Much Is True (http://www.amazon.com/Know-This-Much-True-Oprahs/dp/0060987561) by Wally Lamb. I love his writing.
The Dante Club (http://www.amazon.com/Dante-Club-Novel-Matthew-Pearl/dp/0812971043) by Matthew Pearl. I enjoyed this story using writers to solve murders that resemble Purgatory and Hell in the Divine Comedy.
The Time Traveler’s Wife (http://www.amazon.com/Time-Travelers-Wife-Audrey-Niffenegger/dp/015602943X) by Audrey Niffenegger. The story is unique with the time traveling and a great love story.
Black and Blue (http://www.amazon.com/Black-Blue-Oprahs-Book-Club/dp/0385333137/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/102-7783110-7240105?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1183508329&sr=1-1) by Anna Quindlen. I liked how she referred to her abusive ex as Bobby and her son Robert to show the difference in maturity and respect. It is sad, yet it is a reminder how fast we can lose the one’s we love to this world.
Absolute Power (http://www.amazon.com/Absolute-Power-David-Baldacci/dp/0330419641/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/102-7783110-7240105?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1183508598&sr=1-1) by David Baldacci. This is my favorite book of his.
The Red Tent (http://www.amazon.com/Red-Tent-Anita-Diamant/dp/0312195516/ref=pd_bbs_2/102-7783110-7240105?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1183508726&sr=1-2) by Anita Diamant. It blew my mind that she took a biblical character from the bible and made a fictional story. Great book.

A Prayer for Owen Meany (http://www.amazon.com/Prayer-Owen-Meany-John-Irving/dp/0345361792/ref=pd_bbs_2/102-7783110-7240105?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1183508829&sr=1-2) by John Irving. This book moved me on so many levels. Mr. Irving is clever and nailed it perfect with using CAPS for Owen’s dialogue.For my piece of music I want In My Tribe (http://www.amazon.com/My-Tribe-10-000-Maniacs/dp/B000002H4S/ref=pd_lpo_k2_dp_k2a_2_img/102-7783110-7240105) by the 10,000 Maniacs. From the moment I heard her voice, I thought Natalie Merchant was unique, fantastic with great lyrics.

And for my luxuries I want paper, pencils, coffee, cigarettes, batteries, a charger and a vibrator. These are important necessities.