Just about everyone who reads can recall one or more books that really made a huge difference in their lives. For me, one such book would have to be Obscure Destinies, a collection of stories by Willa Cather. Reading the beautiful title story, “Neighbour Rosicky” when I was 12 really crystallized my desire to become a writer. I just read that film legend James Dean’s favorite book was The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery.
Recently, Parade Magazine devoted its cover story and virtually the whole magazine to “The Summer’s Hottest Reads” — just love the whole idea! One story featured celebs describing “The Book That Changed My Life.” Not surprisingly, there are a number of classics lovingly recalled:
Host of the upcoming talk show “Katie”
“Katherine Graham’s Personal History is the story of a woman I deeply admire.
It takes you through the ebb and flow of her professional and personal life.”
Star of the upcoming film “Les Miserables”
“When I was 118, I read Hermann Hesse’s novel Siddhartha, and that had a big effect on me. I make myself read it every decade because I get a different perspective every time. It’s a beautiful book.”
Head of the Trump Organization
“I read Norman Vincent Peale’s The Power of Positive Thinking when I was quite young, and it left a great impression on me. I agree that a positive outlook and approach to life and business can reap great results.”
Screenwriter of “The Social Network”
“The Catcher in the Rye, but my runner-up is The Bonfire of the Vanities. [It is] this perfect snapshot of a moment in time. Tom Wolfe has a way of taking characters that have nothing to do with each other and making them crash into each other. That’s something I’ve always wanted to try.”
Host of Jeopardy!
“I read The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins when I was about 12 and just couldn’t devour the pages fast enough. I was entranced by this mystery novel. That might be what inspired my love of reading.”
How about you? What’s your favorite book — and what do you love about it?