The other night I had a dream that a wildfire was approaching my house. I had just enough time to pack a few things into a box before I had to evacuate. Naturally, I ran to my bookshelf. I had the box mostly full of books when I realized that it might be a good idea to also take some toiletries, clothes, and food.
It made me think, though: If I could only save a few of my books, which ones would they be? I started making a list of my Most Valued Books.
My Bible- The bible is always a special book, but this one is mine! I’ve had it since forever, it has little illustrations, and I’ve underlined passages. I even accidentally personalized it with a small bloodstain.
Country Life: a handbook for realists and dreamers, by Paul Heiney– This book has a little bit of all things agriculture. It even goes into raising ostriches, blacksmithing, and making mead. I probably won’t do any of that- but I can dream, can’t I?
Kwant’Stan (The Golden Ears)- This book I bought at a library sale looks like it has seen better days. The thin yellowed cover had to be taped together, and it seems to have been printed by typewriter. But it goes into the history of a lost mine, B.C.’s oldest church, and Canada’s first train robbery!
Lord of the Rings, by J.R.R. Tolkien– This isn’t cheating by taking a series. I have The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King (plus the appendixes,) all in one book. Of course I’d save this one!
Les Miserables, by Victor Hugo– I need this book. Bragging rights. (and it’s a good book, besides)
Failstate: Nemisis, by John W. Otte- In my dream I had Failstate, as well as the sequel, Failstate: Legends. Alas, I only have the last book in this awesome and unique superhero series. I used to have Failstate: Legends, but I didn’t do a very good job of protecting it, and sadly lost it. I won’t make the same mistake with Failstate: Nemesis.
The Brushstroke Legacy, by Lauraine Snelling: I love the feel of this book. It has artists, cowboys, two time-lines, Norwegian accents, fixing old cabins, and caramel rolls! The romance was a bit too quick, but who cares? Did I mention the caramel rolls?
Dragonwitch, by Anne Elisabeth Stengl– I read this book in a day, and then read it again in the same month. Then I read it again a few months later. It’s due for another re-read sometime soon. Can you tell I love this book?
Golden Daughter, also by Anne Elisabeth Stengl- This is a book with some incredible world-building, intriguing characters, and powerful symbolism. But it’s also a book with some bittersweet memories for me. I read it as I held my last baby goat on my lap, before he went to his new owner. He stepped on it, and left a faint hoof-print on one page.
By the Great Horn Spoon, by Sid Fleischman– A book for the younger folk, but I love the story. It’s full of ship racing, gold digging, thieves, and some bittersweet family moments. It was a great book to read to my little brother.
There we have it, a list of My Most Valued Books. I had to stop at ten; otherwise I would have gone on forever.