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The Help and The Book Thief are also amazing books. Both will bring you to tears. Well, maybe not The Help, since it's more chick-lit, but I don't think anyone is immune from The Book Thief.
The Fellowship: The Untold Story of Frank Lloyd Wright and the Taliesin Fellowship.
True story about a cult-like colony masquerading as an architecture school taught by Frank Lloyd Wright.
Oh horray! A question about books! Nietzsche's 'Thus Spoke Zarathustra' is the most tremendous work I've ever read. If you make it to the other side of that book intact you will be overfull with an inexhaustible love of adventure and life in the most dangerous sense. But Zarathustra overtakes you, so you need a bit of space and time for it. How about Robert Heinlein's 'Time For the Stars'? Classic science fiction by a master. The story isn't terribly demanding, but it subtly re-calibrates you with expansive thoughts, like most Heinlein. Last idea for now: 'Das Energi' by Paul Williams. This one is hard to come by, but worth looking for. HUGELY influential in my life. Absolutely major.
Thanks for asking a question about books. There were a lot of youths out at the shows in Chicago, which made me hopeful for the future. Right after the new year I read an article listing contemporary items expected to be obsolete by the time children born this year are grown. There were the obvious ones - fax machine, yellow pages - but this year they made the leap and added, you guessed it, books. (Gasp/sigh) So it is wonderful for you to talk about books. You should write a song about how awesome books are, for the children and the future.
I can't remember the book it is from (I know, I am no help there), but when I read it in college the following quote stuck with me and I printed it out and put it on my wall to remind me:
"What you are left with is a premonition of the way your life will fade behind you, like a book you have read too quickly, leaving a dwindling trail of images and emotions."
I thought this was fitting quote about life, memories and sentimentality. Hope you appreciate it as well.
Animal Farm, 1984, Choke, Fight club