We often talk about favorite books - favorite books of all time, favorite books of the year, favorite books of the century, favorite children's books, etc. Go to a search engine, type in the words "favorite" and "books" and you will get upwards of 1,000,000,000 results. But what we won't necessarily find are the personal lists - the favorite books of the people who love us, teach us, and help shape us into the beings that we are.
My mother was a reader. I know that my love of the written word is a legacy from her. Mom had degrees in English education and journalism; she worked as both an editor and a writer. Many of my strongest memories of her include books. I don't remember a time when she did not read to me, recommend books to me, discuss books with me. Everywhere she went, Mom took a book; there were shelves and stacks of them in our house and the library was a weekly event. All of this and I have no idea what her favorite books were. None. I never asked.
It is amazing how much you can learn about a person by simply asking them about their favorite books. Usually, the picks are inspired by strong memories and/or intellectual passions. When I consider my own favorites, I realize that these titles contain more information about me than my Facebook profile. They are a window into my life, who I am, and what I love.
This week, I challenge you to share your favorite books with someone important to you. More importantly, ask them about their favorites and see what you learn.
My favorite books:
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