Monday, January 22, 2018

Books I Really Liked but Can’t Remember Much About

I'm linking up with That Artsy Reader Girl for another Top Ten Tuesday.

Ah, those dark days before Goodreads... Now I have the ability to call up a detailed review to remind me what I thought of a book, but for my pre-2013 reads that's not the case. Still, this category was challenging because if I really liked a book, I generally remember quite a bit about it, and if I don't remember anything about it, I don't remember if I liked it! These are the ones I came up with that I know I liked but that I read so long ago that I'm super fuzzy on the details.

1. The Audacity of Hope by Barack Obama
I read this before he was president, so all his ideas seemed fresh and exciting, but I can't really remember what any of them were. I remember a story about him taking a red-eye flight to vote on a bill and then no one understanding the nuances of his vote... but that's about it.

2. The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman by Ernest J. Gaines
I remember the premise of this book — a girl born into slavery at the end of the Civil War lives long enough to see the civil rights movement in America — but I couldn't tell you any of the details.

3. Black Boy by Richard Wright
I always get mixed up whether this or Native Son is Wright's autobiography (it's this one), but while I remember the plot of Native Son vividly, I can't remember a single detail of Wright's own life.

4. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
I loved this book in middle school, and I remember one scene near the end, but the book is, what? Like 900 pages? I really don't remember anything else from it. I think I still have my 10-page book report on it, though...

5. Cry, the Beloved Country by Alan Paton
I picked up this book in high school when I was sort-of dating a guy from South Africa, which may have influenced why I liked the book, but I remember absolutely nothing about it now except the setting.

6. The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Emmuska Orczy
This is another book from middle school that I really loved, and I remember the basic contours of the plot, including the big reveal of who the Scarlet Pimpernel was. I couldn't tell you exactly what the Scarlet Pimpernel did, though, except that it had something to do with the French Revolution (I think), or what anyone else in the book did for that matter.

7. The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis
I remember listening to this on audio while running on the track in my college gym. I know the premise — one demon writes letters to another demon on how to best influence human beings to sin — but I don't think I could tell you a single one of his "tips." At the time, though, I know I was like, "Oh, that's so true!"

8. A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson
I praised this book a lot after reading it, and I know that it manages to be comprehensive (as the title suggests), accessible, and concise, but have I remembered any of the actual lessons from the book? If I have, I couldn't tell you that they came from this book.

9. Stumbling on Happiness by Daniel Gilbert
This is another nonfiction read that I referenced a lot after reading it, but now I've read so many similar nonfiction books that I couldn't say definitively that any one study or story came from this book.

10. The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
I know that this book involves talking animals... and that it's a well-loved classic... but I don't remember a single aspect of the plot now.

Which good books have escaped your memory?

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