Top Ten Tuesday: Books That I’m Thankful For.

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

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Hello and welcome to another lovely Top Ten Tuesday! Today’s theme is a Thanksgiving freebie and whilst we don’t celebrate Thanksgiving here in the UK, it’s always nice thinking about the things we are thankful for! So, for today’s TTT I’m going to tell you about the ten books that I am most thankful for.

1. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

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Summary: from Amazon

HERE IS A SMALL FACT – YOU ARE GOING TO DIE

1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier.
Liesel, a nine-year-old girl, is living with a foster family on Himmel Street. Her parents have been taken away to a concentration camp. Liesel steals books. This is her story and the story of the inhabitants of her street when the bombs begin to fall.

SOME IMPORTANT INFORMATION – THIS NOVEL IS NARRATED BY DEATH

Why:

The Book Thief is my all time favourite book so it really has to be at the top of my list of books I’m really thankful exist. The book has so much emotion and such a beautiful message to it. I fell in love with the characters and the magical way the story is told. If you haven’t read it then I seriously suggest you do ASAP!

2. The Harry Potter Series by JK Rowling

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Summary: from Amazon

When a letter arrives for unhappy but ordinary Harry Potter, a decade-old secret is revealed to him that apparently he’s the last to know. His parents were wizards, killed by a Dark Lord’s curse when Harry was just a baby, and which he somehow survived. Leaving his unsympathetic aunt and uncle for Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Harry stumbles upon a sinister mystery when he finds a three-headed dog guarding a room on the third floor. Then he hears of a missing stone with astonishing powers, which could be valuable, dangerous – or both. An incredible adventure is about to begin!

Why:

I couldn’t leave Harry Potter off this list because it has had such a huge impact on my life. I went to see the new Fantastic Beasts film at the weekend and if I’m being honest there were developments that really annoyed me due to their impact on the Harry Potter canon. I kind of wish JK Rowling would just leave the series alone because I feel so attached to it but whatever happens with it – it will always be incredibly important to me and I’m very grateful for it.

3. Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier

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Summary: from Amazon

On a trip to the South of France, the shy heroine of Rebecca falls in love with Maxim de Winter, a handsome widower. Although his proposal comes as a surprise, she happily agrees to marry him. But as they arrive at her husband’s home, Manderley, a change comes over Maxim, and the young bride is filled with dread. Friendless in the isolated mansion, she realises that she barely knows him. In every corner of every room is the phantom of his beautiful first wife, Rebecca, and the new Mrs de Winter walks in her shadow.

Why:

Rebecca is probably the first adult ‘classic’ book that I read and I thought it would be a little boring if I’m being totally honest. In fact it was the complete opposite and it is still the most atmospheric book I have ever read. It’s a great story, beautifully written and I am very thankful for it’s existence.

4. The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

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Summary: from Amazon

Mary Lennox, a sickly ten year old girl, adrift in the world after both her mother and father die is sent to Yorkshire to live with an uncle whom she has never met, at his isolated house, Misselthwaite Manor. Initially Mary is seen as a rude, aggressive and selfish child. She dislikes her new home and the people living in it. But now the scene is set for her transformation and the introduction of the author’s engaging theme of rejuvenation and renewal. In exploring the grounds Mary finds the key to the locked garden which is neglected and overrun with weeds. She sets her mind to bringing it back to life. In doing so, Mary finds a purpose and an excitement in her lonely existence. However, apart from the garden, there are other secrets to be revealed at Misselthwaite Manor such as the strange cries in the night and the identity of Colin, a disabled boy, whom she discovers in the hidden bedroom.

Why:

I first read The Secret Garden as a child and I just remember it feeling so magical and beautiful. It is a gorgeous story and filled with such nuance for a book aimed at children which I think is so important. I kind of want to read it again as an adult but I’m too scared to lose the eternal magic of the story and I am very grateful for this book.

5. A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

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Summary: from Amazon

At first sight, Ove is almost certainly the grumpiest man you will ever meet. He thinks himself surrounded by idiots – neighbours who can’t reverse a trailer properly, joggers, shop assistants who talk in code, and the perpetrators of the vicious coup d’etat that ousted him as Chairman of the Residents’ Association. He will persist in making his daily inspection rounds of the local streets.
But isn’t it rare, these days, to find such old-fashioned clarity of belief and deed? Such unswerving conviction about what the world should be, and a lifelong dedication to making it just so?
In the end, you will see, there is something about Ove that is quite irresistible…

Why:

Fredrik Backman is one of my favourite authors working today and his books never disappoint me. I have a special place in my heart, however, for Ove because it’s the first of his books that I read. It is funny and so heartwarming whilst never feeling remotely cheesy or sacharrine. I am very thankful to have Ove in my life!

6. A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara

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Summary: from Amazon

When four graduates from a small Massachusetts college move to New York to make their way, they’re broke, adrift, and buoyed only by their friendship and ambition. There is kind, handsome Willem, an aspiring actor; JB, a quick-witted, sometimes cruel Brooklyn-born painter seeking entry to the art world; Malcolm, a frustrated architect at a prominent firm; and withdrawn, brilliant, enigmatic Jude, who serves as their centre of gravity. Over the decades, their relationships deepen and darken, tinged by addiction, success, and pride. Yet their greatest challenge, each comes to realize, is Jude himself, by midlife a terrifyingly talented litigator yet an increasingly broken man, his mind and body scarred by an unspeakable childhood, and haunted by what he fears is a degree of trauma that he’ll not only be unable to overcome – but that will define his life forever.

Why:

It’s weird to say I’m thankful for this book because reading it was a devastating and incredibly sad experience. However, it has to be on my list because I don’t recall feeling so strongly about a book for a very long time. I don’t often get too wrapped up the drama and sadness in a story but I could not help it whilst reading A Little Life. I still feel like it should almost come with a warning about the effect it will have on the reader on the cover though!

7. Not That Bad: Dispatches From Rape Culture by Roxane Gay

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Summary: from Amazon

In this valuable and revealing anthology, cultural critic and bestselling author Roxane Gay collects original and previously published pieces that address what it means to live in a world where women have to measure the harassment, violence, and aggression they face, and where they are “routinely second-guessed, blown off, discredited, denigrated, besmirched, belittled, patronized, mocked, shamed, gaslit, insulted, bullied” for speaking out. Contributions include essays from established and up-and-coming writers, performers, and critics, including actors Ally Sheedy and Gabrielle Union and writers Amy Jo Burns, Lyz Lenz, Claire Schwartz, and Bob Shacochis.

Why:

I’m really thankful for this collection of essays because I think it’s easy to consider things like sexual harassment or abuse and the MeToo movement in the abstract but harder to realise the full effect it has on the lives of men and women who are victims of it. This book will make you feel anger but I think there’s also hope in it which is so important and so I am very thankful it exists.

8. The Grant County Series by Karin Slaughter

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Summary: from Amazon

The sleepy town of Heartsdale, Georgia, is jolted into panic when Sara Linton, paediatrician and medical examiner, finds Sibyl Adams dead in the local diner. As well as being viciously raped, Sibyl has been cut: two deep knife wounds form a lethal cross over her stomach. But it’s only once Sara starts to perform the post-mortem that the full extent of the killer’s brutality becomes clear.
Police chief Jeffrey Tolliver – Sara’s ex-husband – is in charge of the investigation, and when a second victim is found, crucified, only a few days later, both Jeffrey and Sara have to face the fact that Sibyl’s murder wasn’t a one-off attack. What they’re dealing with is a seasoned sexual predator. A violent serial killer…

Why:

I’m putting this series by the amazing Karin Slaughter on my list because I love and read a lot of books in the crime genre but I felt all the books I read were feeling a little samey. That changed with reading this series, it is brutal and unrelenting but so, so addictive. So I have to be thankful for this author being brought to my attention because she has become one of my absolute must-reads.

9. Life Honestly: Strong Opinions by Strong Women by The Pool

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Summary: from Amazon

Within these pages you’ll find an un-airbrushed selection of advice, comment and opinion. These are intimate stories from bad sex to bad boys, from workplace inequality to the sheer joy of learning something new, that will spark hope, triumph and occasionally outrage. In Life Honestly you will find fresh perspectives on everything from age milestones and friendship, motherhood and weddings, and why you should always, always, tell someone when you like their earrings. This book will make you feel empowered, supported and more prepared than ever to take on anything life has to offer because, honestly, we’re all in this together.

Why:

I read this one quite recently and I’m popping it on the list because I found it so interesting and relatable. It addresses so many different aspects of being a women and I found every single story fascinating and important even when they were about subjects I have not had much experience of. If you haven’t heard of The Pool which is an online platform for and by women then honestly check out their website – it has become a firm favourite of mine.

10. The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris

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Summary: from Amazon

In 1942, Lale Sokolov arrived in Auschwitz-Birkenau. He was given the job of tattooing the prisoners marked for survival – scratching numbers into his fellow victims’ arms in indelible ink to create what would become one of the most potent symbols of the Holocaust.

Waiting in line to be tattooed, terrified and shaking, was a young girl. For Lale – a dandy, a jack-the-lad, a bit of a chancer – it was love at first sight. And he was determined not only to survive himself, but to ensure this woman, Gita, did, too.

So begins one of the most life-affirming, courageous, unforgettable and human stories of the Holocaust: the love story of the tattooist of Auschwitz.

Why:

The subject of war has been at the forefront of many peoples minds this year due to the hundred year anniversary of the Armistice of World War I. The Tattooist of Auschwitz is actually a story from World War II but it still has so much resonance when thinking about the suffering people endured in both the world wars and in the hundreds of other wars taking place around the world. It’s a beautiful story that shows the horrors of the holocaust but also how important it is to realise that many survived it and have been living with the memories ever since. It’s a book that I am hugely thankful for.

Well, that’s it for another Top Ten Tuesday! I really hope you enjoyed reading it and please do let me know your thoughts in the comments! Also link to your own Top Ten Tuesday – I can’t wait to read everyone’s Thanksgiving themed list! And if you celebrate it then I hope you have a wonderful day!

xxx

7 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Books That I’m Thankful For.

  1. Jodi Fisher says:

    Great article!

    Believe it or not, I have never read any of the books in the Harry Potter series yet. One day hopefully. I did see Daniel Radcliffe on Broadway twice in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. That’s kind of Harry Potter related, LoL. In a way I’m kind of glad I’m not a super fan of this series yet, because I am a major Theater Dork and would probably want to see the play on Broadway. But tickets are like so expensive and hard to get for this show, so for that reason I’m glad I’m not a super fan yet.

    I really want to read Rebecca, maybe sometime this year. I actually found the book on sale at the bookstore ages ago. There was a musical version that was suppose to come to Broadway twice, but there was some kind of problem and it never ending up coming.

    I really want to read A Little Life. I’ve heard such good things about that book. There was actually a stage play done in Amsterdam. Hopefully, this is a book I will read in the next year.

    Over the summer I read You by Caroline Kepnes and just recently finished reading the sequel. The Lifetime TV Series adaptation was so well done. Recommends for both the books and TV Show!

    Currently reading To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han. Just started reading it and so far it’s really good! Can’t wait to watch the Netflix movie afterwards.

    Like

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