Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens. My gran gave me a copy of this book when I was little, because I was so obsessed with the musical Oliver! Obviously it went way over my head, but it was the first classic I remember attempting to read. Later, my grandad bought me a whole heap of abridged classics that gave me an even greater taste, and as I got older I returned to them and Oliver Twist and quickly fell in love. By the time I was 17, I was a fully-fledged classic lover, going on to study English Literature at uni.
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. I've read dystopian novels before - such as George Orwell's 1984, Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale and P. D. James' Children of Men - and while I did appreciate them, I still wasn't a massive fan of the genre as a whole. Which is why I was resistant to The Hunger Games for a very long time, until finally the hype became too much and I caved. Thank goodness I did, because I freaking loved the series - so much that I decided to give dystopian books more of a chance.
Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants by Ann Brashares. When I was at uni, I had a friend who was really into YA. Not gonna lie, I judged her on it. I thought she was too old to be reading silly teen trash, and saw it as, well, really dorky (clearly I was going through a pretentious stage or something). Then, for my birthday, she gave me Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants, one of her favourites. I'd seen the movie and enjoyed it (for some reason, I didn't turn my nose up at trashy teen movies as much as books), so one summer day I decided to give the book a go. I LOVED it, and devoured the whole series within a week. Needless to say, it caused me to do a complete 180 in my views of YA , not to mention made me feel pretty damn guilty - and silly - for being so judgey.
Bridget Jones' Diary by Helen Fielding. This was the first adult chick lit I read, and what a book to start the genre with! It made me laugh out loud more than any other book I could remember reading, and it still makes me giggle every time I read it. It's such a fun read, and Bridget's inner monologue is so easy to identify with. The experience of reading BJD has made me pick up many a chick lit book, with mixed results.
Twilight by Stephenie Meyer. Ah, Twilight. I have a feeling I'll see this on many lists in answer to this question. It seems that Twilight introduced a lot of people to a lot of things, whether it be reading in general or a particular genre. For me, it was the first paranormal romance I really read. I picked it up not long after I started working at Girlfriend, curious to see what was sending so many teen girls (and, for that matter, adult women) ker-razy. Like so many others, I got completely sucked in, and went on a binge of vampire/paranormal romances for the next few months. Too much of a good thing meant I went off the genre completely for a while after that, but now I like to mix the odd PNR with contemporary, literary and other types of fiction.
P.S. This weeks Follow Friday question from Alison Can Read and Parajunkee's View is: "We want to see what you look like! Take a pic with you and your current read! Too shy? Boo! Just post a fun pic you want to share." Because it's 11.15pm here and I'm not exactly ready for my close-up, here are some pics of me with my favourite author, Charles Dickens, instead. Or the closest I'll ever come to him, anyway.
|At Madame Tussauds|
|At Dickens' house in London|
Happy Friday everyone!