Friday, May 28, 2010

Desert Island Books

Every now and again I like to download a podcast of a programme on BBC Radio 4, called 'Desert Island Discs'. It is a weekly programme, where a famous or influential person chooses 8 songs to listen to, if they were stranded on a deserted island. I know that this is a tenuous link, but I started to make a list of 8 books, that I would take with me to read on a desert island:

1. 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' by Roald Dahl - This is a no brainer for me, because it has been my favourite book since I was a child. Actually in an ideal world, I would like to take a complete works of Roald Dahl, (much like the complete works of Shakespeare that you can buy) but sadly, I'm not sure if this exists. The reason I would take this novel, would be so that Dahl's wacky, funny style and imagination, would cheer me up on the loneliest of moments on the island.

2. 'Memoirs of a Geisha' by Arthur Golden- It may not come as a surprise to any regular readers of the blog that I would choose this novel, as I have mentioned how much I love it on previous posts. Also, as I would be bored of sitting in the same place for a long time, by reading this book, I could be transported (in my head) to somewhere else.

3. My third choice, would be a novel to puzzle over. Something like 'The Trial' by Franz Kafka or 'The Coma' by Alex Garland (I have read this novel twice and STILL don't understand the ending!) or 'Sophie' by Guy Burt. This choice would ensure that my brain cells did some work now and then.

4. My next selection, would be book with a title or author, that I have never heard of. That way, at least I would have something fresh to discover.

5. 'Little Women' by Louisa May Allcott- For me, this novel has the 'Feel Good' factor. It's so quaint, charming and wonderfully written, that it would make me feel warm and fuzzy, just by reading it.

6. My next choice would be 'Origin of the Species' by Charles Darwin. I've been interested in animals, fossils and botanical things for a while now, after watching programmes like "Last Chance to See" and "Museum of Life" (a documentary series about The Nature History Museum in London). As these programmes mention the work of Charles Darwin, I would like to read this novel, to learn about his theories and discoveries of the natural world.

7. My seventh choice would have to be something like an autobiography or biography. A book about someone like the Para Olympic sportswoman Tanni Grey Thompson or Nelson Mandela. If I were feel particularly sinister, I would read a biography on Jack the Ripper, not because I'm a psycho, but I think that because he was never caught, this give him some elusiveness and mysterious character.

8. This isn't technically a novel, but I would HAVE to take a rather large notebook (and pen!) with me on the island. This is because if I didn't have any way to write something on a regular basis, either journal pages, book reviews or creative writing, then I think that I would go mad. Also it would ensure that once I had read my choice of novels a few times, then I could always write my own stories, to be entertain myself

As I'm naturally nosey (I'm the sort of person that loves to know what books people are reading or what music they have on their I-Pods), I leave this question with you.

What 8 books would you take on a desert island and why?

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