1. One Book That Changed Your Life — When Bad Things Happen to Good People, by Rabbi Harold Kushner. I read it in 1992, during the long sad summer after the loss described in my Ordinary Time reflection for today. I thought in terms of rewards and punishments; what had I done to make God hurt me this way? On down the road of grief I went, until I reached the signpost marked "Anger," and I wanted to turn away from a God who was so capricious. Then someone gave me Kushner’s book, and I found myself walking on a different road.
2. One Book That You’ve Read More Than Once — This would be a long list, but I just finished re-reading Jane Austen’s Emma, so we’ll use that one.
3. One Book You’d Want on a Desert Island — Hmm. I guess I would want a Bible, but I wouldn’t mind having a Riverside Shakespeare, too.
4. One Book That Made You Laugh — But Not the Hippopotamus. I must have read that book to #1 Son six million times, and it still makes me laugh!
5. One Book That Made You Cry — I cry easily. But my saddest memory of crying over a book has to be the death of Jack, the brindle bulldog, in Laura Ingalls Wilder’s By the Shores of Silver Lake. I almost made myself sick crying over Jack, and I didn’t even like dogs then. My mother promptly forbade the reading of books about animals.
6. One Book You Wish Had Been Written — How to Go to Seminary with Three Children and No Husband Without Losing Your Mind. (I had to make it up as I went along.)
7. One Book That You Wish Had Never Been Written — I’m copying Questing Parson on this one. Revelation. It has to be the most misused book of the Bible, by far.
8. One Book You’re Currently Reading — American Gospel: God, the Founding Fathers, and the Making of a Nation, a new book by Jon Meacham, who writes about religion for Newsweek. I highly recommend it, although I wish he were on the inclusive language train.
9. One Book You’ve Been Meaning to Read — One? Have you seen my Summer Reading List in the sidebar? Let’s say Ruined by Reading, which I’ve been meaning to read for years.
10. I’m supposed to tag five people. I always hate to do this. What if they don’t notice I’ve tagged them? But here goes: will smama, reverendmother, Phantom Scribbler, NotShyChiRev and, hey, Pure Luck!!