Top Ten Most Influential Books

The rule about this list is that these are the books that were most influential. They shifted the course of my life, rather than being my “favorites” or entertaining me for a week or two.

The image above is the books in the order in which I encountered them (15 was a big year for me). The list below is the books in order of their magnitude of influence.

Wise Blood, Flannery O’Conner
The Odyssey, Homer (Fitzgerald translation)
Undaunted Courage, Stephen Ambrose
The Little Flowers of St. Frances
The World’s Best Fairy Tales, Reader’s Digest Anthology
Uncle Remus, Joel Chandler Harris
The Lord of the Rings trilogy, J.R.R. Tolkien
Writing Down the Bones, Natalie Goldberg
Webster’s First New Wickedary of the English Language, Mary Daly
The Elegant Universe, Brian Greene

It was really hard to cull it down to only ten. Here are the next ten (or so) books of influence.

Cat’s Eye, Margaret Atwood
New and Selected Poems, Volume 2, Mary Oliver
After Virtue, Alisdair MacIntyre / No Contest, Alphie Kohn
Diet for a New America, John Robbins / The Moosewood Cookbook, Mollie Katzen
The Parables of the Kingdom / Grace / Judgment, Robert Farrar Capon
“So Much Depends” / “This is Just to Say”, William Carlos Williams
Practice in Christianity, Soren Kierkegaard
No Exit, Jean-Paul Sartre
Hyperion, Dan Simmons
Shogun, James Clavell

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