I’ve been collecting and reading books for as long as I can remember. The first book I was able to read by myself was Goldilocks and the Three Bears. From this childhood classic my addiction was set, and my books became an extension of my personality.
My first collection contained copies of almost every Nancy Drew book published between the 1930’s (I still have two first editions) and 1970’s. At one time I owned a copy of every Stephen King novel, good and bad, but today I find my collection is not author centered but genre centered. Save Shakespeare, I copies of all of his works and many books on the subject of Shakespeare himself.
A fan one asked Neil Gaiman which 5 books could he not live without. Gaiman replied that the question was like asking which body parts could he not live without; an almost impossible question to answer. Here is my attempt,(cheats included):
The Complete works of William Shakespeare, including the First Folio
Dante’s The Divine Comedy (my favorite translation is written by Dorothy Sayers)
A History of God by Karen Armstrong. One of the best books on the history of monotheism I’ve ever come across.
A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson This book filled in the gaps of my scientific understanding and awakened the latent science geek within.
And lastly, if I found myself on a deserted island, I would go mad without at least one or two books from Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series.