Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A thought: My life in books

Having just finished devouring "The Chrysalids" by John Wyndham, I decided to recap the novels that have made an impact on me since my 13th Summer. And looking through the list, I'm pretty damn sure that they have fed the way I tend to visually portray my surroundings. They read like a celebration of twisted tortured characters, passionate and pathetic, striving for love, and more often than not, failing miserably.
In approximate chronology of reading, they are...

1) Moi, Christiane F., 13 ans, droguée, prostituée...
Made me want to be a heroin addict.
2) Les Enfants de l'Aube - Patrick Poivre d'Arvor
3) The Secret History - Donna Tartt
Henry, the main character, was my first love, and my first heartbreak when I resigned myself to the fact that he would never rid me of my virginity.
4) She's Come Undone - Wally Lamb
5) The Painted Bird - Jerzy Kosinski
Definitely the most violent book I've ever read, indelible.
6) Jeux Interdits - Francois Boyer
7) The Vampire Chronicles - Anne Rice
I read all 5 books in the series in about a month, and lamented the fact that I was a meat & veg-eating mortal. This is way, way before the saccharine Twilight fiesta.
8) Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
Needless to say: made me want to be Lolita.
9) Lord of the Flies - William Golding
10) Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
11) L'Ecume des Jours - Boris Vian
12) Boredom - Alberto Moravia
13) Elle et Lui - George Sand
vs. La Confession d'un Enfant du Siècle - Alfred de Musset
Sand and Musset lived a long, passionate, twisted love story. Both their novels are basically badly-disguised autobiographies, each one recounting the relationship from their own respective point of vue. They 'hated' and blamed each other by then, so the 2 sides of the coin make for very passionate reading. I once complained about my own fucked-up love story to Musset's gravestone in Père Lachaise, but I'm sure he took my man's side.
14) L'Invitée - Simone de Beauvoir
The book that proves that an 'open relationship' just doesn't work. Z, I rest my case.
15) Histoire de l'Oeil - George Bataille
I discovered the notion of the Abject and never looked back.
16) 1984 - George Orwell
17) First Love, Last Rites - Ian McEwan
Sexual deviation at its best.

No comments: