It would seem that the “10 Weeks of Books” meme over at The Egotist’s Club has ended all to soon, since here we are at the final entry already! :(
So, the last prompt of the meme is:
“Books that I would bring if the world was going to be destroyed by aliens/cylons and we had to restart civilization as we know it. (ie: the basis of human knowledge and thought and civilization).”
I think I’m going to have to impose some limitations on myself to answer this one. 1) I’m only going to list my top ten. 2) I’m only going to use books from my personal library – if cylons were attacking, I doubt I’d hit up the local library for additional books.
- The Bible – Beyond being the basis for my personal faith, the Bible has had a huge effect on Western civilization as we know it. It’s influence is immeasurable, as is its value.
- Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen – Who didn’t see this one coming?
- Paradise Lost by John Milton – Milton’s Satan is iconic. He serves as one of the first official “anti-heroes” and has influenced how villains are portrayed in literature (y’know, like having motivations and stuff like that). Not to mention Paradise Lost is a great example of epic poetry (it’s a toss-up between this one and Dante’s Divine Comedy, actually, but since I don’t own any Dante, Milton wins by default).
- Hans Christian Anderson’s Faerie Tales – Not only do a lot of the old faerie tales serve as cautionary tales for children, they provide great inspiration for modern stories – so, in terms of rebuilding the world, these stories will help provide a strong base for creating new ones.
- Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien – My copy is a single volume compilation of the whole trilogy – ha! It’s a great example of a Hero’s Journey and the linguistic genius just can’t be destroyed (I’d cry). Not to mention, it’s just awesome in general.
- A cookbook of some sort – preferably one with a recipe or two for bread. Seriously, people, bread is a staple and it’s not something that you can just throw together – I want to eat in my post-apocalyptic world, thank you!
- Nicholas Nickleby by Charles Dickens – It’s a difficult read, but hopefully the social commentary on the mistreatment of children in the school system and the examples of unscrupulous family members and employers will help us avoid making those same errors as we rebuild.
- Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain – Because I suppose we have to have some American authors in there and he’s one of the best we’ve got!
- Little Women by Louisa May Alcott – It shows a loving family whose members try to think of others before themselves. It shows trials and successes, joys and troubles, and just paints a picture of a simple, but rewarding life.
- Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman – in the midst of all this heavy reading, we’ve got to have something fun to read!
So that’s my survivor list. Somehow, I think the cylons will be able to get me early on, since I’ll be weighed down by all these books! Or maybe I’ll just start downloading all of them to my Kindle – then I can get away faster! But when it runs out of power, then all the books are inaccessible again. Hm. Conundrums.
Also, if the world ends by zombies instead of cylons, I’d replace Huck Finn with Max Brooks’ Zombie Survival Guide.