Friday, June 8, 2012

Books That Inspired Me to Read Other Books

Every now and then there comes along a book that makes a strong effort to mention another book in its plot.It will be more than just a passing mention one character makes to another. I mean that a book will be given powerful mention in the story. Like a character will be reading it, or multiple characters will reference it. Sometimes the plot of one book will be said to so closely resemble that of another, that I will be moved to check out the other book. Here are some of the books I have read that inspired me to read other books that I otherwise would not have picked up.

I read Rot & Ruin after reading rave reviews on it from Karin's Book Nook blog. She and I normally do not share tastes, but this one piqued my curiosity more than others she has reviewed. I LOVED it. But then I started hearing that the plot was very reminiscent of the YA classic The Giver. Though I wasn't really interested in the Giver, it was a short book, so I gave it a shot. I ended up reading it in one sitting, and then immediately passed it to a friend to read. I highly recommend both of these books!

Another book was King Dork by Frank Portman. Tom Henderson is a character very similar to Holden Caufield, but that is not what makes this book so extraordinary. I LOVE the cover of King Dork. How it is a scratched, used copy of what appears to be the Catcher in the Rye. If the cover doesn't make it obvious, the plot certainly helps to cement the idea that Frank Portman wants the reader to experience both books simultaneously. Which is what I did, sort of. I read Catcher in the Rye promptly after finishing King Dork. And I think it made me appreciate the classic more than I would have if I'd read it on it's own. Well done, Portman!

The next book is a little different. Jim Lynch's The Highest Tide is one of my favorite books. I loved how I felt the connection with the ocean just from reading the pages. Miles is a young adult who is very in-tune with the tide pools near his home. He catches sea food delicacies for restaurants. I feel in love with the descriptions of life teaming within the tide polls, and in one part, Miles mentions that he learned a lot from reading a book called The Erotic Ocean (out of print!). Contrary to what the title says, this is a dry book about ocean life, but I still found it to be very interesting.

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