Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly thing hosted by Sam from Thoughts on Tomes. You can find more information about past and upcoming topics in the GoodReads group. This week’s topic is books that we’re thankful for. It was hard to choose which ones to include, but these are without a doubt books I’m truly thankful for.
5 — Crow: From The Life and Songs of The Crow by Ted Hughes
It offered me comfort at a time of grief. I can’t quite put my finger on why I feel so deeply for this poetry collection. Perhaps it’s the mythical nature of the character of Crow, I honestly can’t say. It has a special place in my heart none the less.
4 — The Lonely City: Adventures in the Art of Being Alone by Olivia Laing
This non-fiction book about loneliness made me feel less alone. The author talks about her own experiences while portraying the loneliness of different artists throughout recent history. It sounds horrible, but reading about other people’s struggle helped me realize what I was feeling, and that I wasn’t alone in feeling it.
3 — A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking
First of all, this book rekindled my love of science. Secondly, I’ve always had a hard time understanding people and the world in general. But here is something tangible, something that explains why and how the universe works. It provides as many questions as answers, but in a way that inspired me to appreciate the beauty and mysteries of our existence.
2 — Ham on Rye by Charles Bukowski
Despite all of its flaws, it made me want to write again. It made me want to be as brutally honest as the writing feels, which essentially also means not lying to myself about anything. I used to write a lot when I was younger. I don’t mean writing a diary, I mean writing stories about fictional people in fictional worlds. Somewhere along the line I stopped. After reading all of Bukowski’s novels, I’ve come to realize that I need to write. I need to put my thoughts down whenever I don’t understand my own feelings, because when I do, I can be brutal and from that honesty I can come to terms with it and eventually get through it.
1 — The Magicians by Lev Grossman
Of all of the books I’ve read in my life thus far, I’ve never felt so understood as when reading about Quentin Coldwater. The first time I read The Magicians trilogy, I was at the lowest point of my life. I was living my dream, but for some reason I still wasn’t happy. In fact, I was more miserable than ever. And so was Q. I finally found a character that was like me, for better or worse. Of course there are a lot of differences between me and this fictional character, but in essence, I felt understood. And that is the most important thing you can ever hope for really.