Saturday, September 4, 2010

The Shelf of Awesome

Many people have what they refer to as a “keeper shelf.” If someone asked me to put all my “keepers” on one shelf, I’d first have to search Guinness World Records for the longest shelf. While reorganizing my bookcases today, I did, however, put together a “Shelf of Awesome.”

What the hell is that, you wonder? The Shelf of Awesome is a shelf of books that, in brief, inspire me. No, you won’t find any “inspirational” books on The Shelf of Awesome. By inspire I mean these books are the ones that always inspire me to write, to read, to imagine, to love, to smile, and to find happiness. I’ll even let you in on a little secret: not all the books on The Shelf of Awesome are favorites of mine and some of my favorites aren’t on the shelf.

Since The Shelf of Awesome is an actual shelf, no ebooks made the cut. Perhaps one day I’ll put together an electronic version of the shelf, but for now, you’ll find what’s on my Shelf of Awesome below.

And please, do let me know – do you have a similar shelf? What books have or would make the cut and why?

Favorite Book of All-Time
The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster

These Are Classics for a Reason
Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell

The First
You can never forget your first romance novel. Or, in my case, novels:

The Calhoun Women (Courting Catherine, A Man for Amanda, For the Love of Lilah, and Suzanna’s Surrender) by Nora Roberts

The Comfort Reads
The books I always return to:

Claiming the Courtesan by Anna Campbell
Weddings Can Be Murder by Christie Craig
He Loves Lucy by Susan Donovan
The King’s Pleasure by Shannon Drake
The Bride by Julie Garwood
The Legend MacKinnon by Donna Kauffman
Devil in Winter by Lisa Kleypas
Born in Sin by Kinley MacGregor
Romancing Mr. Bridgerton by Julia Quinn
Lover Awakened by J.R. Ward

It’s Not Always the Book
These are the books that, while I love them, actually aren’t my favorite books of the authors in question. These are the books that make the shelf because they’ve come to symbolize an author and/or series that inspires (see above definition) me:

Sounds to Die By by Nikki Duncan
Night Pleasures by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Somebody Killed His Editor by Josh Lanyon
Naked in Death by J.D. Robb

Books Mean Love
Or at least they do when your closest friends also happen to be avid readers. These books make the shelf not because of the stories or the authors that wrote them, but the people who gave them to me:

The Eleventh Sheep by Kyle Mewburn and Claire Richards
Mansfield Park and Mummies: Monster Mayhem, Matrimony, Ancient Curses, True Love, and Other Dire Delights by Jane Austen and Vera Nazarian
Where is the Green Sheep? By Mem Fox and Judy Horacek


Angela said...

That's an awesome shelf Kat. Now you make me want to put together one of my own. I'm gonna have to think about it though.

Nicole Sheldon said...

I'm going to steal this idea as well. I have some favorites that I always grab when the mood calls.

Nicole Sheldon said...

Ok so I didn't have near as many as you, but I was pleased to see that we both had a JR Ward make the list.

Mountie said...

Looks fantastic Kat :D Definitely a place to visit to figure out what to read next. thanks for posting your list.

Nikki Duncan said...

I'm proud to have made your shelf. Thank you. :)

Bev Hankins said...

What a great list! Had to do one of my own....

It's here, if you'd like to take a look:

One Pushy Fox said...

This is such a great post! Devil in Winter is one of my FAVORITE Lisa Kleypas books!!! And you love Julia Quinn too?!?! Clearly you're one smart chick!