Reading a good book is more than just something to do. It is soothing to the soul. Reading can expand your vocabulary and create a complex imagination.
Meet Amanda from Little Tranquility
My 5 favorite authors
1. Sylvia Plath
I've had an obsession with Sylvia Plath since I was about 14. I remember reading her poem, "Mirror" in English class and falling in love with her immediately. Sylvia was everything I strive to be as a writer, and more. The way she worded things, and formed sentences and had line breaks at just the right times was so powerful, and I never knew anyone could express themselves so honestly and with so much heart. I could relate to her on a personal level, too, which always helps. Her journals are my favorite. She was a beautiful person, regardless of how crazy some people make her out to be. I love her. I even have a Plath tattoo! I have "i am." tattooed on the inside of my left wrist. I dedicated a post to her over on my blog, so if you're interested, please check it out! :)
"I write only because there this a voice within me that will not be still."
2. Maya Angelou
Oh, Maya. What a beautiful human being. Is there anyone greater than her? I just don't think there is. Her life was filled with hardship, beauty, heartache, triumph, and everything in between. "I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings" is my favorite book of hers, and I even have that poem tattooed on my back. :) (Obviously I just love tattooing my favorite authors to my body, haha!) Her poems are incredible and her gift of storytelling is unbeatable. If I had the choice to meet anyone famous, I would definitely want to meet her, no questions asked. <3 <3 <3
3. Jonathan Safran Foer
I love this man. I always joke about how he's my husband, and a few years ago, my friend Shaun met him after he spoke at Google, and told Jonathan that I was his future wife. He apparently chuckled. Shaun got a book signed for me and I just about peed my pants when I received it in the mail! His writing is amazing and his books are so much fun to read. He has a true gift, and if you haven't read anything by him yet, I highly suggest doing so immediately! Two of his books have been turned into movies, starring Elijah Wood and Tom Hanks, so I think that proves just how talented he really is! I saw "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close" at the theatre on Valentines Day and loved it. Finally, a movie that actually does the book justice! It's one of my all-time favorite books, so I was happy to walk out and not be disappointed. There's a possibility that I'll be meeting him in March, and I almost don't want to because I know I'll just clam up and blush to death or something and make a complete fool of myself, haha. We'll see!
4. Augusten Burroughs
I first read "Running With Scissors" while I was working at Cold Stone Creamery when I was 15. Someone left their copy in the back room, and at slow times, I'd sit back there and read it. I loved days when I had the store to myself and it was too cold outside for customers. I'd read and read and occasionally eat a bowl of ice cream at the same time. Yeah, I pretty much had the greatest job ever, haha. Augusten's writing is brutal and honest and I love him for that. I once got into a mad debate over the internet with some woman who was cutting him down for being so vulgar all the time. Nobody was forcing her to read his books and I just didn't see why it bothered her so much. Wonder what her thoughts were on Bukowski? Anyway, I guess he isn't for everyone, but if you're okay with vulgarity and reading books that aren't squeaky clean, then I think he'll be your cup of tea. I'd start with one of his short stories books like "Possible Side Effects" and then move on to one of his novels like "Running With Scissors" once you get a feel for his writing. He's going on a book tour in May! I will for sure be bringing my whole stack of his books to get signed if he plans on coming to DC. Yep, I'm one of THOSE people...
5. Ann Packer
I just love this woman. I've read all of her books and have never been disappointed. "The Dive From Clausen's Pier" has been one of my favorite books since I first read it when I was 14. I picked it up by chance at a thrift store in Kenosha, WI. I remember having one of those moments where I needed a book, any book. This was the one I happened to grab, and I'm so glad I did! It's a very simple story, which is one of the many things I love about it, but it's also a story of growth, change, forgiveness, love, loss and all the good & bad in between. I can't even count how many times I've read it. My copy is all broken and worn and all of the pages are highlighted and underlined and circled. Ann Packer writes with such feeling, and can describe things so perfectly and flawlessly. It's almost like watching a movie. The main character reminded me so much of myself, and continues to do so to this day. I still have moments where I think of Carrie, and imagine I'm doing something similar to what she would have done in the book. This novel means so much to me, and I don't know any other book that I've feel such a connection with, for so long. It's not only because I was so young when I first read it, but it's also because I've grown with it, and I think it takes a special kind of book to be able to make you feel like you can return to it at any given time and still feel like you're living it, and learning from it, regardless of how old you are. That's the beautiful thing about books. No matter how much you change as a person, those pages never do, and they're always there for you when you need them most.