Friday, August 28, 2009

Mark's favourite books of all time (in no particular order)


I’ve picked five books that I’ve read again and again and continue to resonate with me for some reason or another. It can be hard sometimes to define just what makes a book so special especially with such personal choices but here we go…

The Great Gatsby – F. Scott Fitzgerald
A tragic love story, yet one which is full of hope and reminds us to never lose sight of your dreams this is a book I re- read at least once a year. The sheer poetry of Fitzgerald’s language sweeps you through the story of love lost and rediscovered, and is as far as I’m concerned the greatest novel of the 20th Century.

Will You Please Be Quiet Please – Raymond Carver
In just a few words and often only a few pages Raymond Carver can tell you something; it may be something you thought you knew already, but with the conclusion of each story you feel that you have discovered something, either about yourself or other people. In this collection ‘Night School' is the perfect example of Carver’s compact epic style and each story carries the same power as a full length novel.

Batman Year One – Frank Miller
Year One may be the definitive origin of Batman, yet the reason I love it is because of Commissioner Gordon. Not only does Gordon narrate most of the story but Frank Miller’s reinterpretation casts Gordon as a tough and capable cop, a family man fighting impossible levels of corruption and his own darker instincts. Year One made me see all the characters in a new light and made me realise just how great comics could be.

The Big Sleep – Raymond Chandler
Chandler wrote many great books but there remains something special about this debut novel, which introduced Philip Marlowe to the world. It was Chandler's use of language whether writing impossibly snappy dialogue or simply describing a sunset that made me a lifelong fan and pushed this book to the top of my read again and again list.

A Passage To India – E.M. Forster
I’ll admit I was torn between this and A Room with A View, and even though I fell in love with Lucy Honeychurch, it’s A Passage to India which wins the day. From the travelogue style opening to the aftermath of the strange incident at the Marabar caves this is a truly magical novel, which has never ceased to be relevant and thought provoking. While I never fell in love with Adela Quested, the logical and principled Cyril Fielding made quite an impact during my formative years.

We'd like you to let us know your top 5 books.

Please read this post for your chance to win 20, yes you heard me right, 20 books of your choice*.

Click on this form below, print it out and post it to us, or drop it in. Alternatively you can email us with your choice, plus your name and we'll add it into the mix.

No comments: