This may be a very diverse list.
"No sense makes sense"
Charles Milles Manson
1. Helter Skelter.: I am a huge true-crime reader. The opening sentence says "this book will scare the hell out of you". It will. I don't think in any way that it glorifies or tries to justify what happened on the nights of August 9 and 10th , 1969, in Los Angeles. But it changed the world.
Written by the prosecutor, Vincent Bugliosi, who to some, comes across to some as arrogant and egotistical, this book will indeed stay with you. Forever.
2. A Question Of Guilt: The murder of Nancy Eaton. This took place in Toronto, and examines the problem of those with mental illness, and how something like this could happen. If you know Toronto, you know the Eaton name as well as the Oslers, whom the killer was related to.
3. Four Days In November: Many questions remain unanswered about the assassination of JFK. This is an excerpt from the more comprehensive Reclaiming History, and follows a timeline of what happened, who was there and when. Again, Bugliosi writes so that you will not want to put this down. The theory is that Oswald acted alone, and backs up those claims.
4. In case you think I spend my reading time solving cold cases- September by Rosamund Pilcher. If you really want to have some great escapism, start with Coming Home, September and Winter Solstice. Pilcher brings her characters and scenery to life- but they aren't schmaltzy. I reread this in September- maybe not every year, but this one. I enjoy it every time.
5. Where The Wild Things Are. Max's journey to the land of the wild things. Completely charming, and a masterpiece of artwork. I have fond memories of reading this to my son, and in fact, his nickname is another Maurice Sendak boy- Bumble Ardy.
6. Another subject that I am fascinated by is the downshifters, or those that live on the land. This book is a contemporary one, and fairly new, Adventures In Yarn Farming, by Barbara Perry. This chronicles the year on a sheep farm, with all it's joys, and sometimes mess. For those of us who dream of it, or have yet to make the leap, this is almost as good as the real deal.
7. Tasha Tudor's Heirloom Crafts. To those who know the author and children's illustrator, Tasha Tudor, she was a women who lived life exactly as she wanted. In fact, she felt most comfortable in the 1830's, and her home, dress and lifestyle reflected this. This will make you question our fast-paced, high speed world, and find joy in simple pleasures.
8. Woodswoman, continuing on. Anne LaBastille not only dreamed it, she lived it. Deep in the Adirondacks, she built 2 homes, and made a living as a Guide and a writer. Sadly, she passed away, but these books are a wonderful legacy to an extraordinary woman.
9 and 10: Sylvia's Farm, I came across this book on a remainder pile, and it is my comfort "feel-good" book. Sylvia Jorrin lives on a farm in the Catskill mountains, and has a huge pile of a mansion. She accidentally got into sheep farming over 20 years ago, and chronicles life on Greenleaf here, but if you read this and want more, and you will, she has published this. I ran into her at my visit to Rhinebeck, and she is a tiny little woman, but so fascinating.