Armchair BEA 2013/Literary Fiction…Books With a Personal Impact…

armchair bea

Today’s Armchair BEA genre topic is…Literary fiction, and that’s a pretty broad topic. I think for most people it’s confusing as well. So…I decided to talk about books that have had some type of major impact on me in a personal way.

I’m actually going to start with a few children’s books that had a major impact on me. These are books that I kept as I grew up because they’re the ones that fostered my love of reading, and I want to honor them.

The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein is a book that I wish every parent would buy and read to their children. I am so lucky to have an autographed copy, and I treasure it.

From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler  by E.L. Konigsburg, and The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner were books that made me want to have adventures like the children in the books did.

The Nancy Drew series by Carolyn Keen…I spent many a night reading these books under the covers when I was supposed to be sleeping.

It’s Like This, Cat by Emily Cheney Neville, The Bronze Bow  by  Elizabeth George Speare, and The Door in the Wall by Marguerite de Angeli were just a few of many awesome books that my beloved 5th grade teacher, Mr. Tak , read to my class. That was the favorite time of my school day, and I will be forever grateful that he exposed me to so many wonderful books that I might not have found on my own.

Now I’ll fast forward to the last few years of books that hold a special place in my heart…

The Twilight series by Stephenie Meyer. This series is what brought me to twitter in the first place. I was desperate to meet others that felt for these books what I did. When I see others trash these books it makes me sad. If they aren’t “your thing”…that’s cool, but they had a huge impact on thousands of grown women like me, and they forged countless friendships. Nuff said.

The Outlander  series by Diana Gabaldon is a set of books that spoke to me on so many levels. It’s really hard for me to explain why…they just do. So much so, that I have one small bookcase which is devoted to all my editions of just this series.

The Fever series by Karen Marie Moning. This series had me obsessed for the longest time. It was very different from anything I had ever read before. JZB was a character that fascinated me on all kinds of levels, and the books are powerfully written. I think this was the first series I ever read that once I was done…I was at loss as to what to read next. It took me a week before I found something that could hold my attention, and for me?!? That says a lot.

Gabriel’s Inferno by Sylvain Reynard was the book that got me hooked on contemporary romance. I mentioned that yesterday, but felt I had to include it again, since it changed my favorite genres from mystery/thriller to the genre that we most feature and love on Bookish Temptations…so yeah…I’d say it had a pretty powerful impact on me in a very personal way. SR was my first interview as a book blogger, and he also gave me my first guest post, deleted scene, outtake, teaser…yeah…a whole lot of firsts… As to why I love the book itself? Aside from the amazing romance between Gabriel and Julia was the storytelling itself. The beauty of SR’s descriptive writing, the snarky narrating, and the sensuality of the book are combined in such a perfect way that I could not put the book down once I started it. Chapter 15 will probably always remain my favorite chapter of any book. Brilliant is the only word I can use to describe it.

Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James wasn’t the first erotica book I ever read but it was the first I remember reading with the dom/sub theme. I feel lucky in a way that I experienced the first two books before all the madness that surrounded them when she was signed by Random House. Fifty Shades Darker was the first ARC ever offered to me, and hers was the first blog tour and giveaway I ever did as a book blogger. I loved the romance between Christian and Ana which for me transcended the graphic sex scenes. Not that I didn’t enjoy those too…I did, I did, but what made the impact on me so strongly was the beautiful story of struggle.

The Thoughtless series by S.C. Stephens. Normally, I am not a lover of lots of angst in a book, and yet the first book in this series owned me completely. I was emotionally drained by the time I finished it, but I floved it so hard it was worth every agonizing second. The next two books were spectacular as well, but Thoughtless will always have a special place in my heart for introducing me to what I call “heart attack romance”.

Easy by Tammara Webber is a book that I never wanted to end. I loved everything about it. The characters, the storyline with an incredibly socially relevant  and important topic that is written so beautifully…it’s just a perfect book.

Hopeless By Colleen Hoover was the first book that ever made me feel completely inadequate as a reviewer. I loved it so much I just didn’t think I could write anything that would do justice to the book. My passion for this book knows no bounds. It has an extremely difficult topic within the story, but is told in such a way that I was made hopeful by reading it. I loved it so much that I immediately reread it as soon as I finished. I very rarely ever do that no matter how fabulous a book is, so that should tell you something. I could go on about this book all day, but I’ll just stop by saying it’s in my top 3 books of all time favorites.

The Edge of Never by J.A. Redmerski is yet another book that just blew me away as a reader, and is another story that I reread right away. With kickass characters and a captivating story…this book is just fantastic.

Falling Into You by Jasinda Wilder is another stunning book that ripped my heart out and then put it back together. Raw and powerful, but with a beautiful affirmation of the human spirit and the healing power of love.

The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay is the last book I’ll gush over for today. I don’t want to sound like a broken record, but this is another author who stole a piece of my heart with her book. It’s authors like Katja that write so outstandingly that I really feel like the story is a personal gift, and I treasure this book.

There’s so many more books I love and that have affected me deeply on some level or another. I hope you’ve discovered books that have done the same for you!

Now’s your chance to share books that have made some kind of impact on you personally…

Later on today I’ll have a giveaway with a lot of these books as choices you could win…

Tamie Xo

9 thoughts on “Armchair BEA 2013/Literary Fiction…Books With a Personal Impact…

  1. Heather says:

    So many wonderful books listed! 🙂 We have similar taste!


  2. I LOVE contemporary romance too. Easy, The Edge of Never, Falling into You and Hopeless had a profound affect on me as well, I adored those books. I have the Sea of Tranquility but haven’t been able to read it yet. I also have the Thoughtless series high up on my TBR. I can see that I like a lot of the same books as you 🙂


  3. Dana says:

    My 6 year old loves The Giving Tree. We’ve read that book countless times. I agree that your autographed is a treasure! I’m jealous. Great list of books you have. I’ve read many but haven’t gotten to a lot of them too. I’m not a big contemporary romance reader but I enjoy it occasionally just the same.


  4. Melissa says:

    All of the books listed, some of which I’ve read, and some of which are on my list to read, are all examples of books that move the heart and the soul. I was profoundly impacted by the Twilight Series, the Harry Potter Series, and the Fifty Shades Trilogy. I eagerly await the third books in both the Crossfire Trilogy and Gabriel. I recommend Alma Katsu’s The Taker and The Reckoning. Wow! The final in the trilogy, The Descent, is due out the beginning of 2014. I’m going have the hardest time waiting for that one. Read them. READ THEM!


  5. kim says:

    I agree completely with your comments on The Twilight Series and Fifty Shades. Both series opened up new worlds of reading to me. I would also say I loved the Waterfall Series by Lisa Behrgren. Light reading but still gives you the ‘falling in love’ feeling and all that goes along with that. Oh my, there are so many stand alone books that I could list as ‘loves’….. gimme some Knight and Creed any time of day!


  6. Danielle says:

    We share a brain when it comes to Hopeless lol. I was the same, in a heap! Writing that review oh man! Love nancy drew!! Amazing books and Twilight…I finished the series, sobbed and started all over again!


  7. ablightedone says:

    I need to read The Outlander series. I did enjoy Twilight, and I made a lot of friends through the fandom!


  8. You’ve listed a lot of my favorite books and series! I loved Fever, Thoughtless, Easy, and Sea of Tranquility. I have a few others waiting for me on my Nook (Hopeless, Falling into You, and Edge of Never).. It seems like we read alot of the same types of books! I’m super glad you stopped by my blog and that I popped over here!


  9. You have a great list of books here!

    I too spent many nights reading Nancy Drew under the covers! Her books were the first series that I loved so much I had to get my hands on all the books! Did you read the Nancy Drew & Hardy Boys Super Mysteries too? Those were my favourite!

    I’m with you for Easy! That book was perfection.


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