Wednesday, 30 July 2014

8 Books for Every Bookworm to Have in Their (Miniature) Library

The Creative Habit as a must-have bookMy book collection has invaded every room of my house and continues to grow at an alarming rate. This, I reassure myself, is all part of a bookworm's life.

As a dedicated bookworm, here are 8 of the books from my 'library' which I'm most protective over. They travel with me to and from university, and they're always being picked up and recommended to others. For me, they're the must-own books for every booklover.

As a fellow booklover, which books would you add or remove from the list?

1. The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp

This is my go-to provider of inspiration and creative wisdom. It's a superb guide to turn to for all sorts of projects, dreams and budding ideas.

2. A Calendar of Wisdom: Daily Thoughts to Nourish the Soul by Leo Tolstoy

If you want to learn from Leo Tolstoy, both in following his wisdom and avoiding his (many) mistakes, you simply must have this book. It's full of philosophy and brilliant quotes to help you get through the day and improve your wider life.

3. The Complete Works of William Shakespeare

This one is self-explanatory, really. I haven't read all of Shakespeare's work, but I'm certainly planning on it. One of my favourite aspects of doing an English degree is all the exposure to Shakespeare, but I'm looking forward to some exploration of my own too.

A Calendar of Wisdom by Leo Tolstoy as a book we all should own

The Elements of Style, illustrated

4. The Elements of Style by Shrunk and White

This is a bible for writers, and I love the illustrated edition by Penguin.

5. On Writing by Stephen King 

Stephen King must be one of the most respected writers of our time. As readers (and perhaps writers) we're so lucky to have this book of literary guidance from the man himself.

6. The Collected Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 

When I'm on a roll with my writing and work, I think about Sherlock Holmes's brilliant deductions. Everything is going smoothly and I'm feeling so productive. The next day, when I'm too burnt out to do anything but watch Prison Break, I think of Holmes's days spent in his armchair (and then remind myself about mania and how I really must prevent it).

For me, there's a lot to learn from Holmes and Watson. And, of course, it's also one of the best collections in fiction.

7. Penguin's Poems for Life by Laura Barber 

I think we should all have a great poetry anthology to console us on dreary days and help us remember the good times. The Penguin Poems for Life is one of my favourites, but I also like The 20th Century in Poetry by Ebury Press.

8. The Penguin New Dictionary of Quotations

I received this anthology of quotations a few years ago for Christmas from my grandmother, and I've mentioned it several times on the blog. There's something magical about having so much wisdom, humour and inspiration in one book.

Do you think I've missed anything? Alternatively, do you share my appreciation for any of these books? Let me know in the comments!

The New Penguin Dictionary of Quotations for all of our libraries

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Brian Joseph said...

I certainly would not remove any from your list!

As to what I would add seems an impossible conundrum. I would add the Bible. I am a non believer but i I think that it is essential.

tolstoytherapy said...

Good call, Brian! Religion aside, I think it's one of the most influential roots of storytelling and literature. I'd definitely agree that it's essential!

Michal said...

Heck! I'm not a bookworm :( I thought I was...
I have not read any of those positions. I've heard about #4 and #5 and of course about this guy... Shakespeare?
But clearly, I'm not sophisticated enough ;)

I recommend "The Road" by Cormak McCarthy.

Sharon Henning said...

And then for those of us who are believers, the Bible is all you say and so much more.

tolstoytherapy said...

Definitely, Sharon!

Karen said...

Add to this Fowlers Modern English Usage, David Lodge's The Art of Fiction and Penguin Book of Literary Terms….

tolstoytherapy said...

Great choices, Karen - thank you! The Art of Fiction is brilliant. Penguin also has such a great selection of literary reference books, many of which rarely leave my desk! I'm so glad you've come across my website.

tolstoytherapy said...

The Road is a great choice! And we can all be different types of bookworms - I'd say that keeps literary discussion exciting!