personal reflections

Books That Have Stayed With Me

Heather Plett invited me to list ten books that have stayed with me in some way. The instructions: Don’t take more than a few minutes and do not think too hard. They do not have to be the “right” books or great works of literature, just ones that have affected you in some way.


Some of you will know that I am a voracious reader and a fast reader. I read a lot, and have ever since I can remember. When I moved to British Columbia and got my library card, I had two big surprises:

  1. The library card was free. FREE!!
  2. There was no limit to how many books I could take out at one time. NO LIMIT!! I did, however, make frequent contributions to the Library in the form of late charges.


Fun fact: In 2007 I challenged myself to read one book a week. Challenge completed successfully! And since 2007 I have kept a list of all of the books I’ve read.


This is a long way of saying choosing ten was just too hard, even though I was reminded that this isn’t the list of my favourites, it is the list of ones that left an impact. So I picked twenty two, and here they are in random order…


  1. The Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield
  2. Love Is the Killer App by Tim Sanders
  3. What Should I Do With My Life by Po Bronson
  4. The Seven Day Weekend by Ricardo Semler
  5. The Art of Possibility by Rosamund Stone Zander and Benjamin Zander
  6. The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp
  7. The Time Travelers Wife by Audrey Niffenengger
  8. The Art of Innovation by Tom Kelley, Jonathon Littman and Tom Peters
  9. Community: The Structure of Belonging by Peter Block
  10. Calling the Circle & The Circle Way by Christina Baldwin and Ann Linnea
  11. Coming Back to Life: Practices to Reconnect Our Lives, Our World by Joanna Macy and Molly Young Brown
  12. The Soul of Money by Lynne Twist
  13. Walk Out Walk On by Margaret Wheatley and Deborah Frieze
  14. The Exquisite Risk – Daring To Live an Authentic Life by Mark Nepo
  15. Infidel by Ayaan Hirsi Ali
  16. 1984 by George Orwell
  17. On The Beach by Nevil Shute
  18. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini
  19. Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill
  20. A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah
  21. Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela
  22. Chasing Daylight by Gene O’Kelly


And you – what are the books that have stayed with you, impacted you, in some way?


“Mom taught me not to look away from the worst but to believe that we can all do better. She never wavered in her conviction that books are the most powerful tool in the human arsenal, that reading all kinds of books, in whatever format you choose—electronic (even though that wasn’t for her) or printed, or audio—is the grandest entertainment, and also is how you take part in the human conversation. Mom taught me that you can make a difference in the world and that books really do matter: they’re how we know what we need to do in life, and how we tell others. Mom also showed me, over the course of two years and dozens of books and hundreds of hours in hospitals, that books can be how we get closer to each other, and stay close, even in the case of a mother and son who were very close to each other to begin with, and even after one of them has died.” ~ excerpt from The End of Your Life Book Club

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