The Taser's Edge

Reading for Formation

Part of my reading personality is that I re-read nothing, or next-to-nothing.  Even “favorite” books are not necessarily books I’ve read more than once.  The reason: I know there are plenty of books which I would love to read but will never get to anyway.  So it’s neurotic.  There’s nothing wrong with being neurotic.

Lately, however, I’ve been thinking a lot about getting some books together to read each year for several years (or every year), books that form me in ways I would like to be formed, books that ignite my creativity or imagination or wonder, books that I know I just can’t understand without living through a few times at different points in my own life.

The short list:

  • The Bible
  • St. Augustine’s Confessions
  • Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics

I’m currently failing at thinking of the novels or anything fun.  My fear is that a personal favorite but less celebrated book (The Razor’s Edge or The Chosen or The Invention of Hugo Cabret, featured above) will melt away to nothing after a couple reads, or that a great and massive book will eat away time I could spend reading other books.

As I continue to work towards being more fun, are there books that you think would make life better if you read them once a year for, say, the next five years?