Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Top Ten Books That Came Recommended

It's Tuesday and that means it's Top Ten Day!  Today's topic, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, is books that I probably wouldn't have read if not for the recommendations of other book lovers whose opinions I respect.

I had fun poring over my book journal and past blog entries for this list, recalling why I read certain books.  I chose to leave out books read because of my book groups because that list would have been much longer!  There are dozens of fabulous books I read for book groups in the past five years that I never would have read otherwise (see my list of Top Ten Book Group Books).

This list just focuses on those recommended from others beyond my book groups:

  1. Replay by Ken Grimwood – recommended to me by my husband, Ken, when we were first dating.  It turned out to be my favorite book (I've now read it three times) - see why I married him?
  2. Singing with the Top Down by Debrah Williamson - a gift from Ken, chosen with help from the fabulous staff at out local indie bookstore, The Ninth Street Bookstore.
  3. The Memory of Running by Ron McLarty - ditto, another gift from Ken!
  4. Baker Towers by Jennifer Haigh - lent to me by my neighbor, Pam.  I wasn't all that interested in it at first but read it to be polite.  I loved it and recommended it to my book group!
  5. Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah - another one lent to me by my neighbor.  Not my usual type of novel, but I loved it (and cried three times).
  6. The Help by Kathryn Stockett - yet another lent to me by Pam - don't I have a great neighbor??
  7. The Red Leather Diary by Lily Koppel - recommended to me by my mother - she and I always trade books when we see each other!
  8. Life on the Refrigerator Door by Alice Kuipers  - recommended by Kim at Page by Page 
  9. Operating Instructions by Anne Lamott - recommended to me by one of my closest friends, Amy, who knew I would love it as much as she did! 
  10. The Senator’s Wife by Sue Miller - another one borrowed from my mom - I never would have read it on my own but really enjoyed it (more than other Sue Millers I've read).
So, how about you?  What books have you read and enjoyed based on recommendations?

If you'd like to see my list of Top Ten Kids/Teen Books That Came Recommended, check out Great Books for Kids and Teens.


  1. The Help was such an amazing book. Great choice!

  2. Anonymous9:33 PM

    Sue, The 8th Habit talks about how a person can find his passion in life. It goes beyond the 7 habits. If you connected with the 7habits you should read this book and The Speed of Trust by Stephen M. R. Covey, his son.

  3. The Hunger Games series came recomended by a SciFi group I was following for a while. Loved the first book the other two were okay.

    The Elegance of the Hedgehog I read for a bookgroup meeting I was going to attend but never made it there. I am in awe of the writing style of this book. I've purchased the second book but haven't read it, Gourmet Rhapsody. I have to wait until my CFS clears up a bit first.

    I bought the first Twilight book off a clearance rack in Marshalls to find out what all the hype was about. Although I read lots of SciFi, I don't normally read vampire novels. Loved it and promptly went back and got the others.

    I also started reading Octavia Butler on the recomendation from a SciFi friend. She was an author I normally wouldn't read but I loved her strange plot lines and have now read several of her novels. Of course I can't remember any of the titles.

  4. I, too, loved The Help and The Red Leather Diary. I added Replay to my tbr list on your recommendation awhile ago, but still haven't gotten to it. I just reread your review and now I'm determined to get to it sooner rather than later. I'm thinking this one might be a good one to listen to in the car.

  5. Hi Sue- I wrote you a long comment yesterday and when I hit send it said ERROR your comment was not accepted. I got so frustrated that I just turned off my computer and left to do something else. But I'm back today.

    You commented on my blog that you couldn't believe that I took a ten year hiatus from reading. It actually may have been longer than ten years. I read a lot in grade school and junior high then I basically read only what was required in high school and college and since I have a Bachelor of Science not Arts, I never had to read novels in college. I tell kids who ask today that I came to reading late in life. Because I read so little in high school I am playing catch up now. Books that EVERYONE has read years ago and new to me now! :)

    I thought this was a fun TOP TEN just because I could focus on my gratitude.

    And I'm always grateful for your thoughtful comments. I have a feeling if we lived closer together that we would be good friends.


  6. Anne -

    Wow, what an interesting story - I have read voraciously ever since Go, Dog, Go! and The Cat in the Hat! I was also a science-related major and didn't even read some of the required books for freshman lit (!), but I did always manage to have a thriller or other escape novel going.

    So glad you rediscovered reading! And, yes, I agree, wouldn't it be fun to sit down together for coffee and talk books for a couple of hours?


  7. Baffled -

    I keep hearing great things about The Elegance of the Hedgehog - really need to read it one of these days!