Books are a great distraction and they can hold the power to change your life or your outlook on it. As a librarian and reviewer, I read an abnormally large amount of print materials in the course of a year. Many of those titles are out of my head once the book is closed and the review written. Some of them, however, have stayed with me and comfort me in times of distress. Some have even changed the way I look at people or how I look at myself. These are the books that always have a home on my shelf.
The Shellseekers by Rosamunde Pilcher has always been a favorite of mine. I love sagas that follow strong female characters from childhood to adulthood. Penelope Keeling is just such a character. In addition to the writing drawing me in with lush descriptions and characters driving the plot, I feel emotionally attached to the story. Rereading it dozens of times since it came out in the late eighties/early nineteen-nineties, it comforts me like no other.
Another book that I enjoyed for the escapism was Queenie by Michael Korda. A beautiful woman who rises above the odds to make it as a film star. The scenes of India have made me want to go there ever since. Another strong female lead character who keeps her integrity and still manages to not only survive but succeed beyond her wildest dreams.
A non-fiction favorite of mine is The Power of Intention by Wayne Dyer. I have yet to read that without coming away with a sense of peace and powerful knowing that have always yielded major changes in my life.
More recently, I read an advanced reader copy of The Butterfly and the Violin by Kristy Cambron. I tend to shy away from Holocaust and WWII stories but this one grabbed me from the beginning. There are all my favorite elements: art history, a mystery, romance, again the strong female lead. It is also a very powerful tale of the endurance of the human spirit against the most brutally challenging and awful period in our collective history, out July 2014.
What about you? Hop on over to the forums and let me know which books have changed your life or your outlook.