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Book Chat > What books have changed your life?

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message 1: by HOOD (new)

HOOD GEE (gamgse) | 2 comments What are some of the most inspiring books that have changed your life?
Comment below


message 2: by dely (new)

dely | 5214 comments I think in every important book I've read there is something that helped to understand better myself or my life. It't not only one book, but all the books together that helped (above all the books by Fyodor Dostoyevsky).

But there are three books that helped me to open my eyes more than others and helped to understand better what was going on in my inner self. In order I've read them:
1) Bringing Yoga to Life: The Everyday Practice of Enlightened Living by Donna Farhi
2) The Bhagavad Gita
3) Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype by Clarissa Pinkola Estés


message 3: by LauraT (last edited Aug 20, 2015 10:57AM) (new)

LauraT (laurata) | 13030 comments Mod
Difficoult question. Probably Un Uomo by Oriana Fallaci


message 4: by Charbel (last edited Aug 25, 2015 08:14AM) (new)

Charbel (charliecosmos) | 2652 comments Let me see:
Lord of the Flies changed the way I look at seclusion.
The Grey King was the book that made me realise that I'm a reader (a bookworm).
Oliver Twist gave me a glimpse of what hardship is as a child.
The Harry Potter series helped me grow up.
Brideshead Revisited made me appreciate an author's style.
The Origin of Species even though is not your typical comfy ready fuelled my passion for science along with The Grand Design.
Jane Austin (all her works that I've read) made me a feminist.
And 'Salem's Lot set my imagination ablaze, even if it kept me up at night.


message 5: by Pink (new)

Pink Charbel wrote: "Let me see:
Lord of the Flies changed the way I look at seclusion.
The Grey King was the book that made me realise that I'm a reader (a bookworm).
[book:Oliver Twist|1825..."


Great selection of books and reasons why they've changed your life. I especially like what you say about Austen :)


message 6: by Charbel (new)

Charbel (charliecosmos) | 2652 comments Thanks Pink :)


message 7: by LauraT (new)

LauraT (laurata) | 13030 comments Mod
Thank YOU Charbel!


message 8: by Charbel (new)

Charbel (charliecosmos) | 2652 comments That's very sweet Laura! Thanks.


message 9: by [deleted user] (new)

Books don't change your life, you do.


message 10: by H (new)

H (hiisdaarkmaaterials) | 39 comments Seeing people's answers to this question always intrigues me. I cannot definitively say a single book I've read has changed my life. Though sometimes I think perhaps the books I hold dearest to me, those that have remained favourites throughout many years - maybe they have impacted my life in ways I haven't recognised (or perhaps don't wish to!) and would that not make them life changing books? But there's not a single book I can say 'ha! This one changed my life'.


message 11: by B the BookAddict (last edited Oct 24, 2015 10:24AM) (new)

B the BookAddict (bthebookaddict) | 8315 comments It was undoubtedly The Street Sweeper and A Little Life, each for their own separate and entirely different reasons.

Also to a lesser degree, A Man by Oriana Fallaci; a pseudo-biography about Alexandros Panagoulis written in the form of a novel.

Three books in which I realised portrayed the horror/cruelty which humans can inflict upon their fellow man.


message 12: by H (new)

H (hiisdaarkmaaterials) | 39 comments A little life was so good. I think about it every day since I read it a couple of weeks back!


message 13: by Alannah (new)

Alannah Clarke (alannahclarke) | 11466 comments Mod
The only one that comes to mind is Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck. I'm sure I have loads more but I will need to think about them.


message 14: by Travis (new)

Travis Russell | 8 comments Reading Lolita definitely changed my life - it inspired me to become a writer. It made me realize how powerful words can be in many different ways - the unreliability of Humbert and how he toys with our sympathies, the way a novel acts almost as an enigma, and just how beautiful it is.

My written review, if anyone is interested: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...


message 15: by Luca (new)

Luca Ferrarini (luca_ferrarini) | 13 comments Hi everyone!
My list surely includes:

Sophie's World Sophie's World
The selfish gene The Selfish Gene
Asce di Guerra Asce di guerra


message 16: by Nefeli (last edited Sep 09, 2016 06:18AM) (new)

Nefeli (galacticon) | 52 comments I can't say a book changed my life, but the one with the biggest impact on me was Contact by Carl Sagan. It made me realise so many things about science, religion and philosophy, it made me think about the world as not something meaningless, plus the main character was very similar to me and she greatly inspired me.


message 17: by Shajahan (new)

Shajahan Idayathulla (sideequeshaju) Four books I would like to mention here.
1. 'The Resurrection' by Tolstoy changed the my way around from teenage to young adulthood.
2. As a great follow up 'The kingdom of God' again by Tolstoy after reading 'War and peace' was a pure masterpiece. In fact it has been mentioned by Gandhi in his 'Experiments with the truth' that it was this work which changed his life.
3. Of late 'Zen & the Art of Motorcycle maintenance' changed my view again towards philosophy, metaphysics & life as a whole.
4. And it's sequel 'Lila - An inquiry into morals' deserves special mention.


message 18: by dely (new)

dely | 5214 comments Shajahan wrote: "Four books I would like to mention here.
1. 'The Resurrection' by Tolstoy changed the my way around from teenage to young adulthood.
2. As a great follow up 'The kingdom of God' again by Tolstoy a..."


I have The Kingdom of God in my to-read list but seen that it is in English, I'm always postponing it. I loved The Resurrection!


message 19: by Shajahan (new)

Shajahan Idayathulla (sideequeshaju) Great to know that you also like Tolstoy. Happy reading!!!


message 20: by Beatrice Apetrei (new)

Beatrice Apetrei (aabandreea) | 46 comments Till now there are two books that managed to change me .
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens .
And Christ Recrucified by Nikos Kazantzakis .
Immediately after finishing either of them, I felt the need to re-read each page and take delight in meeting the protagonists once more and walking their paths.


Terry ~ Huntress of Erudition | 552 comments Shikha wrote: "One book that is very dear to me and has had a profound impact on me is Tuesdays with Morrie. This book teaches you so much about life and living from the perspective of a dying profess..."
Tuesdays With Morrie, yes!!! How could I have forgotten that one??


Terry ~ Huntress of Erudition | 552 comments Alannah wrote: "The only one that comes to mind is Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck. I'm sure I have loads more but I will need to think about them."

I may need to read that one again - I was touched by it when I read it in class in high school, but I that was so long ago, I barely remember it.


message 23: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 15985 comments Shikha wrote: "One book that is very dear to me and has had a profound impact on me is Tuesdays with Morrie. This book teaches you so much about life and living from the perspective of a dying profess..."

I haven't read that but Brandeis University is near here (and my brother's alma mater) & my parents actually knew Morrie Schwartz slightly.


Terry ~ Huntress of Erudition | 552 comments Shikha wrote: "Terry wrote: "Shikha wrote: "One book that is very dear to me and has had a profound impact on me is Tuesdays with Morrie. This book teaches you so much about life and living from the p..."

The Five People You Meet in Heaven
I liked that one too, but I thought Tuesdays with Morrie was better.


message 25: by Lisa (last edited Sep 17, 2016 09:11PM) (new)

Lisa Vegan (lisavegan) So many books have impacted my life. I have only one book on my life changing shelf and that's Diet for a New America by John Robbins. I read it in spring 1988 and went from being a lacto-ovo vegetarian to a vegan. Doing that was a major change in my life. Every once in a while I read a book I consider adding to my life changing shelf but so far, after giving it time to see, no others have really qualified.


message 26: by dely (new)

dely | 5214 comments Lisa wrote: "So many books have impacted my life. I have only one book on my life changing shelf and that's Diet for a New America by John Robbins. I read it in spring 1988 and went..."

I'm vegetarian too but I think I will never do the further step to become Vegan though it's many years I'm not able to eat eggs. If I see the egg or smell it, I can't eat it, the body refuses it. But I still eat them if they are in a cake, where I don't smell them. I always listen to my body's sign: I started having nausea seeing eggs or smelling coffee, for example, so I stopped with both of them.
But I love too much cheese so I don't think I will stop with it. Once I tried to do lasagne with soyamilk instead of real milk for the bechamel sauce, and it's not the same. A pizza with soyacheese instead of mozzarella? I think I wouldn't survive. I admire who is able to follow a Vegan diet, but I think I would never be able to do it.


message 27: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Vegan (lisavegan) dely wrote: "LI admire who is able to follow a Vegan diet, but I think I would never be able to do it."

dely, Well, that's what almost all people say, but if you ever decided you wanted to, you could do it. Cheese is addictive (scientifically proven) so it is hard to give up. There are new vegan cheeses and recipes that are getting better. I'm okay without cheese. I had cravings for various dairy products for nearly a decade, but for the last nearly 2 decades I've no desire for them. None.


message 28: by dely (new)

dely | 5214 comments Lisa wrote: "dely wrote: "LI admire who is able to follow a Vegan diet, but I think I would never be able to do it."

dely, Well, that's what almost all people say, but if you ever decided you wanted to, you co..."


I think I will continue to listen to my body and I'm sure that if some day I will be ready for it, I will feel it. It happened also this way when I decided to become a Vegetarian: one day I felt that I was ready, that it was the right thing to do. I have never regretted it and I never missed meat or fish and now it's already 22 years.


message 29: by B the BookAddict (last edited Sep 18, 2016 01:43PM) (new)

B the BookAddict (bthebookaddict) | 8315 comments dely, I was totally vegan for quite a few years but have eased back into just vegetarian as I was lacking calcium. But I do not not eat any type of processed food and people would find my diet boring. Fruit as lunch, vegetables for dinner - that's it, no extras.


message 30: by dely (new)

dely | 5214 comments B the BookAddict wrote: "dely, I was totally vegan for quite a few years but have eased back into just vegetarian as I was lacking calcium. But I do not not eat any type of processed food and people would find my diet bori..."

No pasta, rice or bread? From where do you take carbohydrates? Only from potatoes?


message 31: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Vegan (lisavegan) dely, That makes sense. I had to do it once I read what I read so I went from 11 years of lacto-ovo to vegan before I felt ready. I might not have ever felt ready otherwise. I do have some eathing issue so I think it was harder for me than for many to be vegan.

B the BA, I would find your diet boring. I like a huge variety of foods, and the only supplements I need are B12 and D. For some reason my body won't take in D from the sun, the only natural source, well not enough of it. But your diet sounds healthy and if you like it that's what counts.


message 32: by B the BookAddict (new)

B the BookAddict (bthebookaddict) | 8315 comments That's true, Lisa; it suits me and that's what matters.


message 33: by Michael (new)

Michael || TheNeverendingTBR (theneverendingtbrpile) The Stand by Stephen King
On the Road by Jack Kerouac
1984 by George Orwell
Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer


message 34: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 257 comments This is fun to think about. I think I've been changed in small ways by almost every book I've read. But three special ones come to mind:

The Wish-Tree was a picture book I read as a child. It was magical, with a message of responsibility, to "take care of your wish." I still think of this message all the time.

I read Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry Into Values when I was fairly young, and the exploration of the idea of quality has never really left me.

Lastly, there's Zorba the Greek, which for me is all about loving life, in all it's highs and lows.


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