Books, Doctors and Desert Islands

I recently had to go to Alamance Regional Medical Center for a biopsy.  I was pretty nervous about it, so when the radiology technician took my blood pressure, you can imagine that it was high.  She gave me five minutes to calm down and took it again.  It had gone up!  By this time, the Radiologist arrived and it was time to start the biopsy.  As he got started we all started talking about movies we’ve seen and Hunger Games came up.  I haven’t seen the movie yet, but I read all three Suzanne Collins books last year and loved them.  It came out that I was a librarian so Dr. Register wanted to know what my favorite book in the whole world is.  Without any hesitation I answered, “Dandelion Wine, by Ray Bradbury.”  It is the story of a young boy during the summer of his twelfth year.  The images that Mr. Bradbury conjures up are touched with a slight hint of the magical.  His use of language to describe the scenes and events are haunting and leave you reminiscing on your own childhood.  Dr. Register’s favorite books are the Lonesome Dove series by Larry McMurtry.  He said that the prose is absolutely beautiful.  I’ve seen the movies, but I haven’t read the books so I added them to my list of “to read”.

His next question is the one that really set me thinking.  Dr. Register then asked me what my second most favorite book is.  You would think this would be a fairly easy question to answer, but I found it pretty difficult.  Would it be Sarah Addison’s Garden Spells?  Or, what about Robin McKinley’s Beauty: a Retelling?  And there is no way I could leave out anything Tamora Pierce writes, but which one would I consider my favorite?  I quickly gobble up anything she writes!  But wait!  I forgot about Charles de Lint!  Then, of course, there’s Lamb: the Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s childhood pal.  Anne Lamott’s books on faith are among my favorites.  I have the whole Valdemar series by Mercedes Lackey, some of which I’ve read and some I haven’t.  (My intention is to read them in chronological order rather than in the order they were written in.)  I can’t leave off Alice Hoffman or The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer.  And what about Pat Conroy’s Beach Music or The Prince of Tides?  How does one choose!  So my question to you is:  If you had to be stranded on a desert island with a cooler of your favorite beverage, what books would you want with you for company?

Oh, and by the way — after our conversation about books, my blood pressure dropped.  I told you I loved books!

May 3, 2012