Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday (6)

Top Ten Books to Give to Someone (of Any Age!) Who Says They Don't Like to Read:

1. Amelia Bedelia by Peggy Parish
I've found that reluctant beginning readers can be easily won over by this timeless series about a very literal-minded maid. The mix-ups that occur at the hands of Ms. Bedelia incite hilarity amongst the younger set (I say this like I don't chuckle along).
2. Matilda by Roald Dahl
The master of middle grade. Even if someone doesn't like reading as much as Matilda does, I think they'd be entranced by her spirit and tendency to prove tyrannical authority figures wrong.
3. Wonderstruck by Brian Selznick
Besides the fact that this story is brilliant, it is told half in pictures and half in words. This is a great advantage in a book for someone who doesn't have the same attachment to words. Also, it's really helpful to be able to say, "Half of this is pictures!" when the person freaks out at the length of the book.
4.The entire Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
Before I read the Harry Potter books in elementary school, I was stuck in an endless loop of rereading Babysitters Club books. For my literary freedom, I will be forever grateful for these books. They are pure magic. If they don't turn someone on to reading, I don't know what will.
5. The Year of Secret Assignments by Jaclyn Moriarty
A different kind of high school story about pen pals from a private and a public high school by an Australian author. I think the format of this one would appeal to non-readers--the story is written in letters, notes, chats, and school documents.
6. The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins
"Heart-pounding, foot-stomping ACTION ACTION ACTION." Sorry, Roundhouse quote. Incredibly well-written dystopian adventure story. I think the adventure could hold the attention of basically anyone.
7. Dry by Augusten Burroughs
This memoir details Burroughs's advertising career and alcoholism. The writing is so easy to read it's like  he's just a friend explaining his life to you over coffee.
8. Invisible Monsters by Chuck Palahniuk
Chuck Palahniuk is the master of all things wildly messed up. The writing is blunt, sometimes deceptive, but simple enough. I think the messed up qualities of this story would appeal to people because it's so wildly different than most people's lives. It's easy to get lost in these stories.
9. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Proof that classics don't have to be endlessly wordy and complicated. I think this classic would appeal to non-readers because it isn't dry. It features a bootlegger, adultery, and even manslaughter, not to mention the fantastic writing of Fitzgerald. If that's not enough of a sell, show someone how short it is. They should read it because it'll take like an hour.

10. Breakfast of Champions by Kurt Vonnegut
One of the coolest books I have ever read. Also, the reason that I know how to use the word "metafiction" in a sentence, thus giving me the ability to be kind of pretentious if the situation calls for it. You just have to read it to get what I'm saying. To sell it to a non-reader, show them that Vonnegut included some of his own drawings in it.

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish


  1. I love The Great Gatsby. The progression of your list is great. I really want to read Wonderstruck.

  2. I'll be reading The Great Gatsby very soon.

  3. Wonderstruck and Hunger Games are perfect choices. Here is my list http://wp.me/pzUn5-Pd

  4. I love this list - Hunger Games and Harry Potter and the only books I've read and loved the series.

  5. I chose Harry Potter too, the whole world just pulls me in every time! After George's Marvellous Medicine, Matilda was always my favourite Roald Dahl book.