Books That Mean The Most To Me #1

Hey lovelies! I hope you’re all having a good day/evening/night :). I’ve been thinking about doing this post for a while now and I’m finally doing it, so here is the first part of the current list of books that mean the most to me – there are a good number and just the one post would be too long .

The Complete Illustrated Stories of Hans Christian Andersen is possibly the most precious book in my collection. I have had this book pretty much since I was born, for my father bought it for me when I was a baby and no doubt read to me from it to help me go to sleep. Shocking truth be told, I have never read any of this myself; something I hope to rectify next year.

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, or know me from Instagram (@katharinabookmadsinead) then you might know how much of a fan I am of Taran’s Summoner trilogy. I’d initially found Taran on Wattpad, and went on to get a copy of his free (at the time) prequel story Origins (what is now The Outcast). The first time that I read The Novice, I think was 2016 when the paperback edition first came out. I was staying at my best friend’s house while my parents were away and was mildly ill/ down in the dumps, and had brought this and the first in a manga with me. This book…..I don’t know how to describe the impact that this had on me that day I just – I always fall easily back into Taran’s world and get pulled back into the story again instantly the moment I pick it back up – that day I remember being very down and unwell in some way maybe a cold? And within a paragraph/page or so I became just…lost in the world that Taran has created and I forgot about how I was feeling beforehand – and I am being totally honest when I tell you that it even after I put it down after half an hour or so to chat with Tashi about what we were reading, I felt better than I had before. Although some of the events aren’t that comforting this series has become a comfort read for me, and is possibly my favourite series ever.

Not that long ago, I did a Q&A with Taran, which you can find here, and asked what his favourite novel is, and he said,

I love the Redwall series by Brian Jacques. It’s a wonderful high fantasy series, only instead of your typical fantasy races such as orcs and elves, you have anthropomorphic animals like mice, badgers, rats etc instead!

Author of the Summoner series Taran Matharu

At the time of the Q&A I don’t think I’d heard of Jacques’ series, but it did sound like my kind of thing – I’m a fan of The Chronicles of Narnia, so that’s not surprising haha. Then I was charity shop book shopping with my best friend Tashi Jan/Feb either this or last year I saw an aged Mossflower in one of the shops we popped into, and remembered Taran mentioning the series; picking it up along with a few other titles I liked the look of. Needless to say I loved it – and I intend to read the others in the series in the foreseeable future.

Although it isn’t the first personally signed book I received, Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys is the first that I vividly remember going to the signing for, and receiving. I don’t remember how we found out it was happening, but I went with Mum to the signing/reading, held in I think Melton at either a café-bookshop or WHSmith. It was a really cool experience, and actually hearing and watching the author read an extract from the book, and go into the research she carried out before and when writing it was amazing

I can vividly remember going to a charity shop a relatively short drive from our home when I was maybe…ten or eleven? It had been a few years since the novel had come out in paperback form I think, so the copy of Eragon by Christopher Paolini that I found on one of the shop’s bookshelves was already worn, the first page of text missing. I remember spotting the blue cover amongst all of the books on the shelf, the mythical creature and the title catching my eye. Picking it off the shelf I read the blurb, then the first few pages and was instantly hooked, and it was my first introduction to dragon fiction too, so I have a lot to thank the book for. I have a newer copy now, but the copy I found in that charity shop has been with me for nigh-on thirteen years, and I think I’ll probably always hold on to it.

Fahrenheit 451 I think, was the first book I ever got for uni before I started in 2018, and was actually free. Sent to everyone else in my cohort as a welcome onto the degree by our course leader, it was one of the set books for one of our modules and while a lot of the cohort didn’t particularly like Bradbury’s novel I loved it, and I think it’s become one of my favourite dystopian novels to date.

The Bear and the Nightingale is very close to my heart, and not only because it came in my first Book Box Club box (a Christmas present from my parents). This and the sequel, The Girl in the Tower, are the reason I now several new friends for life with, whom I share a WhatsApp chat (love you girlies!) – and I love the series, which is an added bonus.

I found Step Back in Time in The Works one day, I don’t think it was the year it came out, but I was in the shop that day having a browse and spotted the cover and title. Intrigued, I picked it up and had a look at the first few pages and since then I’ve been a fan of Ali Smith’s writing – I’ve even requested and received arcs of a couple of her books since picking up Step Back In Time that day, before I’d actually started my blog.

Hey lovelies! I hope you are doing well, and have enjoyed learning about some of the books that mean the most to me in the first of three dedicated posts. The other two will follow soon, on either side of reviews and other posts, so stay tuned!

You have wings. Believe in them and yourself, and you will fly.

Kath xoxo

Edit: due to issues with some of the images used in the post, I have made the decision to remove all of the images from this particular post and have also removed one book paragraph to use in the second post. However I will create an Instagram post of the books featured and link it here. Hopefully I will not experience the same issues in the other two posts dedicated to this topic. Thank you for your understanding, Kath xx

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