The Geek Girls Book Club discussion

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General Info > What Book Changed Your Life?

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message 1: by Nicole (new)

Nicole (NikkiSticks) | 412 comments Mod
The Bloggess asked this today, and I thought it was a fantastic question. So, what book changed YOUR life?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZkFTqq...


message 2: by Nicole (new)

Nicole (NikkiSticks) | 412 comments Mod
Mine: American Gods


message 3: by Kris (new)

Kris (Bibliofilebk) | 24 comments To Kill a Mockingbird
Lord of the Rings


message 4: by Erin (new)

Erin (Tangential1) | 5 comments Hmmm...interesting question! I can definitely track an uptick in reading for pleasure after picking up Harry Potter in high school (as opposed to the required lit reading that I found horribly tedious at the time). And His Dark Materials was an epiphany in how my fun reads could, in fact, have hidden depths just as profound as the "classics" I was reading for school. Those two really triggered all the appreciation I have for books now.

And then The Beekeeper's Apprentice also deserves a major nod, since it was my gateway into a whole new genre of books. Which, as it turns out, has become my favorite! Like lighter-fluid to the flame of book interest.


message 5: by Kristen (new)

Kristen (fallinharmony) | 2 comments The Martian Chronicles was my gateway into Science Fiction and therefore shaped the way I read today. It remains my favorite Ray Bradbury book, and I plan on re-reading it very soon.


message 6: by Tori (last edited Nov 25, 2012 12:22PM) (new)

Tori (redpentori) | 5 comments The Great and Secret Show - Clive Barker. I was 13 and really should not have been reading it at that age.


message 7: by Nicole (new)

Nicole (NikkiSticks) | 412 comments Mod
Thank you for answering! I love hearing about all these amazing books that have meant so much to people.


message 8: by Ashley (new)

Ashley | 1 comments The Celluloid Closet: Homosexuality in the Movies was my doorway into exploration of depictions of stereotypes in media (race, sexuality, socioeconomic) and prompted further research on how to write for the screen in a way that depicted a diverse group of characters uniquely without perpetuating negative ideas.

I also second His Dark Materials - At the time I was living in a very Christian household and it felt taboo to read, yet I couldn't help but keep reading.


message 9: by Chantell (new)

Chantell  Petrell (ProfoundManifesto) Stranger with My Face
The spiritual aspects in this book just opened up my brain. I'd never heard of any of it before this book, and it got me curious. :3


message 10: by Laura (last edited Sep 19, 2012 10:48PM) (new)

Laura (ratatosk) | 26 comments Lots of books changed my life, mostly ones I read in late adolescence/early 20s when I needed some life changing. Bertrand Russell's Why I Am Not a Christian. Helped me put my thumb on my growing discomfort with my childhood religion; eased my way into atheism. Gilgamesh. The depth of this 5000 year old text blew my 17 year old mind. I'm still finding layers there. The Bhagavad Gita, which I read about the same time. Unveiled a different moral universe that, while it did not tempt me, was awesome to know existed. Marion Zimmer Bradley's The Mists of Avalon. Suggested being a woman did not mean being fallen. Michele Foucault's History of Sexuality. Gender's a social construction. omfg. Max Weber's Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism. Made my family make so much more sense.


message 11: by Krystle (new)

Krystle (krystleskarma) | 11 comments I would say A Spell for Chameleon by Piers Anthony because that book actually ignited my love for the Fantasy genre.


message 12: by Nozomi (new)

Nozomi Autumn (quarkygirl) | 7 comments The Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson. It was the first book lent to me by my SO. I read it and it took me a while to get through. After reading it and having a lively discussion with him about it I got my first hug from him. Almost 4 years later I have re-read it and I just love the book so much. Not sure if it's just that good (which it is) or if it's the memories associated with my first reading of it. Also it was the first book I read of Stephensons and have come to love every book of his I have read so far. Definitely one of my favorite authors.
There are many others but that was the first one that popped into my head.


message 13: by April (new)

April | 5 comments The Apology by Socrates (written by Plato) was the book or story that changed my life in the most dramatic and challenging way. It didn't change my life overnight but it affected me so much, it never left. I was seventeen and it challenged me to think in a way that no other book had done up to that point.

I really really liked that feeling of a humongous door being opened in my mind to endless possibilities, perceptions, theories, answers, questions....

It has set me on the current path I'm on now, which is discovering life and searching for deeper understandings of the things around me.

By the way, I love this thread! I like seeing what books changed people, it's super cool!


message 14: by Jenny Elizabeth (new)

Jenny Elizabeth (JennyZWye) | 3 comments Life changing moment books:
The Awakening - women can be bored to death
100 years of solitude - things aren't always what they seem and life is bigger than logic
Deer Skin by Robin McKinley - everything is redeemable and it reawakened my love of fantasy and folk lore from childhood.

This is a great thread! :)


message 15: by Emily (new)

Emily | 2 comments All right, I know this one will be a tad silly. After some long, careful thought, I decided on Young Years; Best Loved Stories And Poems For Little Children. I'd stay at my grandfather's as a child when my Mom was working nights, and this is a book I cut my teeth on growing up. I found a copy at work when it was donated to our Friends of the Library volunteer collection and bought it right away! This is definitely what geared my lifelong interest in fairy tales, folklore, and mythology.


message 16: by SallyRose (new)

SallyRose Robinson (sallyrose1214) | 5 comments Wow I would say Harriet the Spy started my love of strong female characters. Then lots of Nancy Drew Mystery novels along with all the Little House on the Prairie books.
Of course my love of fantasy came when I was given A Spell For Chameleon. I had to read them all! That was followed by The Dragons of Pern books.
These all shaped my reading & lead me to Good Omens & Ender's Game.
Of course currently love Rosemary & Rue and Feed by Seanan McGuire aka Mira Grant.


message 17: by Sanasai (new)

Sanasai | 9 comments In childhood: The Wonderful Flight to the Mushroom Planet

As a teen:Greyfax Grimwald (and the rest of the circle of light)

As an adult: fewer dramatic changes I can think of, but one inspiring one I love is The Black Riders and Other Lines, and War Is Kind


message 18: by Kris (new)

Kris (Bibliofilebk) | 24 comments The Mushroom Planet was one of my childhood favorites, too! I recently found an old paperback online and re-read it fondly. Then I loaned it to the 8-year old daughter of a friend. The cycle continues! :-)


message 19: by Andrea (new)

Andrea (the_aiobhan) I have three!

When I was 9, my daddy handed me a copy of Daughter of the Drow. My mom was unhappy with some of the adult themes, though, and instead steered me to a "YA-friendly" adult series. The first book of that series, A Spell for Chameleon, and truly the entire Xanth series, changed my life. Not just my literary life, either.

The second book, and the most important book in my life, is Jane Eyre. Also, coincidentally, given as a gift by my mother. Saying it's my favorite book is putting it mildly - I actually had my sister read an excerpt at my wedding.

And last but not least is a book I read once and read parts of sporadically as life hands me trials and tribulations - The Tao of Pooh. I actually gave this one to my mom, for once.

Although I will say that fairy tales were quite important to me as a child, especially by Hans Christian Anderson. And that American Gods introduced me to a style of storytelling I didn't know existed, while The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy holds more wisdom than anyone has the ability to fathom.


message 20: by hermioneinc (new)

hermioneinc | 2 comments Hey everyone :)

My Mum gave me her copy of The Hobbit to read when I was 11. It was the first really in-depth, longish book I had ever read. From then I've been hooked on reading and only wish I had time to read more!!

His Dark Materials defiantly has stayed with me after finishing the series (10 years later). It also made me realise the difference between an absolutely fantastic writer and those which are a pile of poop and and don't need much thought at all!!


message 21: by April (new)

April | 5 comments A. wrote: "I have three!

When I was 9, my daddy handed me a copy of Daughter of the Drow. My mom was unhappy with some of the adult themes, though, and instead steered me to a "YA-friendly" adult series. The..."


I don't really know how the discussion thread works exactly, but when I read that you loved Hans Christian Anderson I was excited to see someone else who loves him! I have his collection of fairy tales and grew up reading them. So I would say he was very influential to me in introducing me to fantasy and the imagination.

I still read his stories once in a while, like every time around Christmas, it's almost a tradition for me to read "The Snow Queen" and "The Little Match Girl." :)


message 22: by April (new)

April | 5 comments Hermione wrote: "Hey everyone :)

My Mum gave me her copy of The Hobbit to read when I was 11. It was the first really in-depth, longish book I had ever read. From then I've been hooked on reading and only wish I h..."


I'm reading The Hobbit now, and I am loving this book! It's one of those books that make me sad when I see I am getting closer to the end, and therefore, have to put down.


message 23: by Andrea (new)

Andrea (the_aiobhan) April wrote: "...when I read that you loved Hans Christian Anderson I was excited to see someone else who loves him! I have his collection of fairy tales and grew up reading them. So I would say he was very influential to me in introducing me to fantasy and the imagination."

I agree! My tastes in literature were definitely shaped by his fairy tales. Little Match Girl is one of my favorites, along with The Red Shoes.


message 24: by Karen (new)

Karen Bartley | 6 comments A. wrote: "I have three!

When I was 9, my daddy handed me a copy of Daughter of the Drow. My mom was unhappy with some of the adult themes, though, and instead steered me to a "YA-friendly" adult series. The..."


Kris wrote: "The Mushroom Planet was one of my childhood favorites, too! I recently found an old paperback online and re-read it fondly. Then I loaned it to the 8-year old daughter of a friend. The cycle contin..."

Love all 3 of those books as well. NO matter how many times I re read Hitchhikers Guide I laugh out loud.


message 25: by Andrea (new)

Andrea (the_aiobhan) Karen wrote: "NO matter how many times I re read Hitchhikers Guide I laugh out loud. "

So do I. I haven't read the rest of the books, but my husband has, and I guess they're all just amazing.


message 26: by Kris (new)

Kris (Bibliofilebk) | 24 comments It's definitely time for me to re-read Hitchhiker's Guide - that book is SO good!! :-)


message 27: by Elisabeth (new)

Elisabeth | 49 comments So funny, I just reread Hitchhiker's Guide - turns out I practically have it memorized, and I heard all the dialogue in the radio cast's voices.


message 28: by [deleted user] (last edited Nov 30, 2012 06:56PM) (new)

I'm still a teenager. But I do have a few books that have shaped my life and still inspire me today.

-This sounds cliche, but the Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone and the whole series definitely shaped my childhood, and made me think more about not only imagination, but it helped me realize that there's not always a fine line between good v. evil, and that love is the greatest magic trick of all.

-The next book series that changed my life was the The Hunger Games. This book trilogy provided a whole new outlook on society and war. This is one of the many book series that helped me transform from a little kid into a teenager.

-Last but certainly not least, any book by the famous John Green. I've just started reading his books this year, and everyone should read them. It really makes you think about a lot of things— from love to society, to death. He covers it all and made me rethink my outlook on life.

-Oh, and this amazing book titled To Kill A Mockingbird had a huge impact on my life as well.


message 29: by Laura (new)

Laura (ratatosk) | 26 comments Peyton wrote: "I'm still a teenager. But I do have a few books that have shaped my life and still inspire me today.

-This sounds cliche, but the Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone and the whole series definit..."


To Kill a Mockingbird is a heartbreaking book. Good exploration of doing the right thing because it's the right thing, not because it accomplishes a good end. Seminal text for us lawyers.

I loved The Hunger Games. Great update of Theseus of the Minotaur.

Harry Potter didn't do much for me. Enjoyed them while I was reading them and gotta give my hat off to Rowling's ability to pace a story, but . . . I dunno. When she said she didn't think of them as fantasy, and was dismissive of the genre, it really soured me. Harry Potter is a good "Cool Britannia" update to the British Monomyth of the orphan hero, but her dismissiveness of its origins really got up my nose.


message 30: by Andrea (new)

Andrea (the_aiobhan) Laura wrote: "To Kill a Mockingbird is a heartbreaking book. Good exploration of doing the right thing because it's the right thing, not because it accomplishes a good end. Seminal text for us lawyers."

I agree. I have to go through that book two or three times each school year with my students and I never get tired of it.


message 31: by Milagros (new)

Milagros | 17 comments Witch Week by Diana Wynne Jones when I was 12 years old. I had learned to speak, and read in, English less than a year ago and her books showed me how great children's literature and fantasy in general could be.

The Long Dark Teatime of the Soul, my introduction to wit and subversiveness of Douglas Adams when I was 13 years old.

The Count of Monte Cristo, by Dumas, read it freshman year in high school and was instantly hooked.


message 32: by N.P. (new)

N.P. Statham (NPStatham) I've been coming back over and over to this thread and can't make up my mind. The truth is that different books have inspired me at different times in my life and books that were my favourites/ life-changers when I was younger have now lost some of their appeal.

And although many of the books in this thread are favourites, it's so hard to nail down the one that 'changed your life' :)

So I'll go with authors that have influenced me instead:
Agatha Christie
Michael Chrichton
Isaac Asimov


message 33: by Kris (new)

Kris (Bibliofilebk) | 24 comments +1 for Asimov!! He was my first "adult" SF author. I own every SF novel he wrote, and have read them multiple times. (In fact, I plan a re-read of the Foundation Trilogy in January. :-)


message 34: by N.P. (new)

N.P. Statham (NPStatham) The Foundation is the best! I have the books and audiobooks and now that you mention it, it's been a while since I last re-read it :)

I'm always surprised when people only know Asimov from the stand alone robot books. I remember being completely fascinated with the notion of psychohistory when I first read it. I'm still hoping one day someone will adapt the foundation into a miniseries or a game.


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