Books That Changed My Life discussion

As a young adult/teenager

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message 1: by Pierce (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:29AM) (new)

Pierce | 2 comments Mod
What are some books that greatly influenced/impacted you when you were a teenager?

message 2: by Jordan (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:29AM) (new)

Jordan | 1 comments The Dharma Bums, Jack Kerouac

message 3: by Renee (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:29AM) (new)

Renee | 2 comments Are you there God? Its me Margret! Love Judy Blume!

message 4: by Ritz (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:39AM) (new)

Ritz (maravillosodesgarro) | 1 comments Muchos ya colocados en mi perfil... pero quizás el que abrió con broche de oro una etapa en mi vida fue El Mundo de Sofia, ese libro además de otros, junto a mis propias inclinaciones e inquietudes y la influencia de personas clave , tuvo en cierto momento un impacto definitivo.

message 5: by Courtney (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:06PM) (new)

Courtney Miller | 2 comments Green Eggs and Ham. Good ol' Green Eggs and Ham.

message 6: by Tory (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:06PM) (new)

Tory | 1 comments I wasn't a teen, but as a child THE book was Matilda by Roald Dahl. It was the first novel I read and the beginning of my love for books.

I still read it occasionally, and I still love it.

message 7: by George (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:06PM) (new)

George Mortimer | 1 comments Nine Stories turned me from an apathetic teenager into a reader.

message 8: by aisha (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:07PM) (new)

aisha chapra | 2 comments Sophie's World (i think that's what it was called) by Jostein Gaarder -opened me to how books can make you learn more about yourself and the world then any other thing except maybe life! I would still recommend it

message 9: by aisha (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:07PM) (new)

aisha chapra | 2 comments hey i just posted the same book in english from the little spanish that i can understand!

message 10: by Christina (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:07PM) (new)

Christina | 1 comments White Fang and The Call of the Wild by Jack London were two of the first novels that I read and absolutely loved.

message 11: by Melissa (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:07PM) (new)

Melissa | 1 comments I'd say my top two, as far as impacting my outlook on life are "Of Human Bondage" by WS Maugham and "The Sojourner" by MK Rawling. The first deals with how we have no control over our feelings, so don't feel bad about them. The second deals with our short time on earth so why stress about material goods.

I think they've both contributed to my low-stress life. :)

message 12: by Tracy (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:08PM) (new)

Tracy vampire lestat and queen of the damned. which is ridiculous, but man, anne rice exposed me to Faust and Goethe when I was 13 through her silly novels! I find that amazing all these years later.

message 13: by Heather (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:08PM) (new)

Heather | 1 comments Jacob Have I Loved (and anything else by Katherine Paterson!) was one of my all-time favorites growing up. I just re-read it recently and it still love how it speaks to me. As a kid/teen, it made me feel less alone in the world knowing there was someone else who felt exactly as I did about life.

message 14: by Autumn (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:08PM) (new)

Autumn | 1 comments Kerouac's On The Road. Especially if you grew up in the Bay Area.

message 15: by Al (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:09PM) (new)

Al | 5 comments recommended for: everyone who has loved and lost

i was an atheist before i experienced the amzing events on which this book is based.

these incidents opened the door of my spiritual being.

november rain is a powerful tale of real life loss and redemption told through a supernatural turn of events.

readers interested in life after death will find this book very satisfying.

life truly happens when you are busy making other plans

read more at official site

find the book's original indian version at amazon:

or the international version:

the link to the author is :

message 16: by mirela (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:10PM) (new)

mirela Darau | 1 comments one of the most influential books through my teenage years was Disputed passage by L. C. Douglas, as it helped me go on and work hard (not only in school:)!). it still makes me dream of nice things...

message 17: by Eric (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:11PM) (new)

Eric Hamen | 4 comments "Breakfast of Champions" by Kurt Vonnegut and "Catch 22" by Joseph Heller. I picked each at random from my local library during 6th grade. Talk about the luck of the draw! Everything previous to that was pulp sci-fi or fantasy. I was going to include the wonderful "A Wrinkle in Time" trilogy but I don't think I read that until 8th grade.

message 18: by Du Bois (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:12PM) (new)

Du Bois Adieu Gary Cooper by Romain Gary

message 19: by [deleted user] (new)

Cannery Row and Sweet Thursday by John Steinbeck; Jonathan Livingston Seagull; Dr. Seuss books


message 20: by James (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:20PM) (new)

James | 2 comments Tom Sawyer Definitely influenced my behavior and moral code as well as lord of the flies which i read around the same time (10 yrs old maybe earlier?) those two books shaped allot of my adolescence.

message 21: by [deleted user] (new)

Alan Watts' The Book granted me my first experience of satori.

message 22: by Chimezie (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:20PM) (new)

Chimezie mekaowulu | 2 comments At the Counseling Corner we offer specialized counseling. One size does not fit all. We offer Adult Counseling for adults, Young Adult Counseling for young adults and Teenage Counseling for teenagers. All three of these groups are typically very different and have very different needs. In addition to the differences between these three groups, some people have minor issues and just need a little assistance to get back on their feet and back on track and some have very serious issues that need much more significant interventions. Some come to counseling to prevent problems from occurring in the future and some come to solve current problems or heal from past wounds. Teenagers and young adults often struggle with issues that are unique from younger children and different than the issues of older adults. For this reason, we recommend that you choose a therapist that specializes in treating the person who needs treatment be it adult, young adult, teenager, or child. At the Counseling Corner we have specialists who treat adults, young adults, teenagers, and children in the Orlando, Winter park, Casselberry and Central Florida area and we offer four main types of counseling for teenagers, adolescents,and young adults:

message 23: by allison (last edited Aug 25, 2016 02:13PM) (new)

allison (itsmealliebee) | 2 comments I agree, it was amazing.

message 24: by Andrea (last edited Aug 25, 2016 02:13PM) (new)

Andrea (outlanderbookfan) | 1 comments My mom had me read Jane Eyre and it completely changed the way I approached reading, I will never forget that...

message 25: by Inder (new)

Inder | 2 comments Yes, as a literary, romantic (in the "Anne of Green Gables" sense), constantly dreaming teen-aged girl, "Jane Eyre" really spoke to my intellect and my heart. Rereading it many years later, I was impressed at my older self, because there is some difficult prose in that book!

I read "For Whom the Bell Tolls" when I was 13 because my parents suggested the content was too mature for me, and it shaped my ideas about war and politics in a major way. And scared me to death.

And then there was "The Mists of Avalon." Boy, was that some badly-written schlock! I shudder to admit that I went through a whole medieval wicca phase (attending the Renaissance Fair, etc.) because of that book. But I was (and still am) obsessed with myths, legends, and folktales, and that book really caught my imagination! I was going to name a daughter after the Lady of the Lake. Thank goodness I didn't become a teen mom!

message 26: by Salma (new)

Salma I don't know about "changing my life" but Margaret Atwood's "Cat's Eye" made me think lord, this is a woman who gets me. I've been re-reading it since 15.

message 27: by Cy (new)

Cy (xyzahira) Anything by Sandra Cisneros, but especially My Wicked Wicked Ways. Also, this was the time I first got into Octavio Paz.

message 28: by Mouse (new)

Mouse I have to say Frances Hodgson Burnett's The Secret Garden and A Little Princess were the ones that got me really thinking that I wanted to be a writer. I just love her lovely prose and wish I could create such a palpable air of magic in my works as she does in hers.

message 29: by Salma (new)

Salma I love Burnett's work! Those were definitely my faves...along with the Anne of Green Gables series

message 30: by Inder (new)

Inder | 2 comments I've been thinking about great children's books lately and how many of them involve either orphans or abandoned/neglected children. This includes books aimed at both boys and girls.

I was reminded of this reading these posts because Frances Hodgson Burnett's books are an obvious example (I loved those books!). And Anne of Green Gables (though she had a nice step-family). But there are also Kidnapped and Treasure Island, Oliver Twist and David Copperfield, the Narnia Series (being sent away for years during a terrible war to live with strangers qualifies in my mind), and of course, Harry Potter. There are even Disney versions, like Bambi. And mythological/fairy tale versions, from the story of Telemachus in the Odyssey to Cinderella.

Learning to survive without supportive adults (or learning to find supportive adults who aren't your parents) is a major theme of children's literature, and like a lot of kids, I just ate those books up growing up (and I'm still eating them up - who can resist Harry?). So I'm thinking this must be a really meaningful archetype for kids, whether or not they have wonderful parents and supportive adults in their lives.

I was thinking, maybe these are stories of survival, and may be valuable to kids in that respect. Any other thoughts?

message 31: by Jenna (new)

Jenna (jentobox) | 1 comments Kerouac's On the Road, Blume's Here's To You Rachel Robinson, and of course it's so cliche but gotta love Salinger's Catcher and the Rye

message 32: by Lillian (new)

Lillian (asmallanddelicateflower) | 1 comments "Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are?" by Dr. Seuss. It has reminded me that things could always be worse. I learned this lesson with humour as a pre-teen. I remembered it into my teen years. And read it to my children as a mom.

message 33: by Meridee (new)

Meridee | 1 comments Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse was spiritually awakening for me at the age of approximately 14 or 15.

I was also astounded by the book Black Like Me. I had no knowledge or understanding of racism. It opened up a door into an entire different world than I lived in. I first heard the words "tenement slum" in 6th grade. We had to have it explained to us by our teacher. Rats biting babies in cribs!! The town that I grew up in also did not allow blacks to rent or live here. A teacher had to explain that to us also. Luckily our parents did not pass on this prejudice to us. We were just oblivious because we were still only children but it started us asking and learning.

message 34: by Vincent (new)

Vincent | 1 comments "Catcher in the Rye" by Salinger.

It's a typical answer, but the reason for my choice is atypical. I liked the style of writing, and think Salinger is a great writer, but honestly I did not like this book. After reading this in high school, I was so frustrated in Holden's bleak attitude about his life, that I really just wanted to shake him by his hat and tell him to grow up. I changed my perspective about myself and goals after reading it because I never, ever wanted to be like him, or ever be put in that situation. I read again after college, and still had the same feelings and conclusion.

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