Writers in the Storm

A blog about writing

storm moving across a field
November 30, 2011

Deserted Island Books - Part 2

by Fae Rowen

Long, long ago Laura Drake wrote about the ten (or so) books she would want for "entertainment purposes" on a deserted island. You can read it here. I loved the idea of trying to narrow my selection to only ten books, but it's taken me this long to make the final cuts, since I'm not going with Laura's "anything by" an author spot on the list.  Come on now, that adds lots of books in there, even though I have some favorite authors and every book they write is a keeper.

I'm not a re-reader of my favorite books, although in the last few years I have revisited some of the favored books of my youth.  They are still favorite books, however they were much different than I remembered them.  Since the books hadn't changed--well, maybe a bit of dust (I'm not Suzy Homemaker)--I must have changed.

Anyway, here are the books in my steamer trunk that would keep me entertained and thinking if I were marooned alone and had free time to enjoy a good read:

  • Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon  (This is the only book Laura and I would both want.)
  • Chapterhouse Dune, by Frank Herbert ( A stunning capstone for the Dune series)
  • Stranger in a Strange Land, by Robert Heinlein (The first science fiction book I ever read.)
  • Digital Fortress, by Dan Brown (Computers, mathematics, treachery--need I say more?)
  • Mistress, by Amanda Quick (Jayne Ann Krentz) (Actually, this would be my "anything she writes" author. This book was my introduction to regency romance.)
  • Warrior's Woman, by Johanna Lindsey (This is the book that got me to transition from sci fi to romance.)
  • Dorsai!, by Gordon Dickson (If I were allowed a second "anything written by" author, it would be Gordon Dickson.  His books really helped me deal with the- shall we be kind and say 'troublesome'-people in my life.)
  • Foundation, by Isaac Asimov (One of the few books I've read more than twice)
  • Downbelow Station, by C.J. Cherryh (The most-often-read book on my shelves)
  • River God, by Wilbur Smith (You-are-there action and a slice of history of Ancient Egypt)

I'm really sorry that my Templar books didn't make the cut, but if I'm lucky enough to be on the island with Laura and she'll let me borrow Outlander, then I would bring Make the Most of Your Time on Earth, A Rough Guide to the World with 1000 Ultimate Travel Experiences so I could plan my next trip!

My list includes a little past and present--and a lot of future,  like my life and my writing.  I just had an interesting thought--What if I used my time to re-read my favorite craft books and wrote? Oh, I already gave you that list a few months back. I guess I need a larger trunk!

Are any of my books on your list?  What would entertain you and fire your imagination as you wait for that rescue helicopter--or luxury cruise ship?

0 comments on “Deserted Island Books - Part 2”

  1. Definitely FOUNDATION would be on mine and Gabaldon's OUTLANDER. I would have to have PRIDE AND PREJUDICE. ;o) I don't have the time right now to figure out the other seven. But wouldn't it be lovely to be able to just read as in the days before we also became writers?

    1. Every time PRIDE AND PREJUDICE is on TV I have to watch it, so I'm with you there, Evelyn. And, yes, I'd love to be able to read several books a week like I used to.

  2. Fae, I am sure we are destined to be stranded on islands thousands of miles apart. I might be on an out-island in the Med sea or in the Carribbean and you I think might be somewhere in the South Pacific. Why? My island would represent the "old" world and the voo-doo mysterious islands in both seas that cast a long shadow of a world with strong ties to this one. You would be part of the young and the restless, dark men might come in long boats to carry you back to yet another island. That being said I would put Agatha Christie, Michael Connelly and JD Robb in my trunk ... yes and two Lee Child. Two of each of these equal to eight and then I'd take a classic like Lord of the Rings (and I'd count those three as one) and the last would be JD Salinger's Nine Short Stories since I can never get bored with his off-centered and quirky characters like Uncle Wiggly in Connecticut. Different strokes for us different folks 🙂

  3. Okay, hang on! You give me a hard time for my "anything by," author, but then you and Florence both cheat with it! I know, I know, one ten are impossible to choose.

    I'm really looking forward to people's lists - you know that everyone likes something different, but seeing the 'top ten' list really brings that home.

    So come on, commenters, show us what you got!

  4. Oh, I remember Warrior's Woman. But then I love a good Lindsey any day. My deserted Island books would all have to be romances. Who wants to get serious or depressed in paradise? 🙂

  5. I don't even have to be on a desert island, I do re-read my books. Among my favorites are all the Georgette Heyer Regecies and historicals, Dorothy Dunnett, Sara Donati and the Outlander series.

  6. I too am a re-reader and I even have total recall for plot and main characters. But if I only had to choose ten that I enjoy over and over it would be....

    Honor's Splendor by Julie Garwood
    Lord of the Rings - Tolkien
    Finding Laura - Kay Hooper
    Dark Guardian - Christine Feehan
    The Bourne Identity - Robert Ludlum
    One for the Money - Janet Evanovich (Lula and Grandma Mazur would make me laugh out loud even on a deserted island)
    Ecstacy's Trail - Elaine Barbieri ( Gotta love the 80's title - its my guilty pleasure book)
    The Butlerian Jihad - Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson
    Ugly Duckling - Iris Johansen
    Beauty - Robin McKinley

    I absolutely adore genre fiction and that is all I would take with me to keep me company!

  7. Only ten choices is tough:
    1. Michael Connolly - The Poet
    2. Michael Connolly - The Last Coyote
    3. Nelson DeMille - The Charm School
    4. Robert Ludlum - The Bourne Identity
    5. Daniel Silva - Mark of the Assassin
    6. No Country For Old Men - Cormac McCarthy
    7. Vince Flynn - Consent to Kill
    8. Tim O'Brien - The Things They Carried
    9. Larry McMurtry - Lonesome Dove
    10. In Cold Blood - Truman Capote

    1. Ooooo, I loved The Charm School!!! Have you read The Last of the Breed by Louis L'lamour or The Key to Rebecca by Ken Follett??? What about Pillars of the Earth - also by Ken Follett?

  8. Hmmmm, let's see...

    I'm with Flo that I'd want J.D. Robb so I could get a little "Roarke Fix". I'd also need some Janet Evanovich and Sweet Potato Queens to make me laugh my guts out.

    I'd take the Jean M. Auel "Earth's Children" books so I could have some Ayla survival tactics.

    A book on edible plants and "When All Hell Breaks Loose" by Cody Lundin. (More survival action.)

    Let's see, that's about 8 books right there, so I'd round it out with The Last of The Breed that I recommended to Tim above - AWESOME book - and a book of The Brother's Grimm so I could have a variety of fairy tales, since who doesn't love both variety and fairy tales.

    I'll have to think on this and get a specific post together since I can never resist a good "Throw it down!"

  9. Let me see, 10 is so many and how fabulous. Okay let me get started.

    1) The Bible - inspiration, jealousies, betrayal, yep, just about everything in that book.
    2) The Taming of the Shrew - Shakespeare because that story ALWAYs makes me laugh
    3)The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead - Max Brooks can you tell that humor's important to me?
    4) The Essential Wild Food Survival Guide - Linda Runyon eating safe is very important to me
    5) Dreams I & II - Jayne Ann Krentz this is sort of cheating but the two were released as category and actually make one single title.
    6) To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee because I love this book every time I read it
    7) To Sail Beyond the Sunset - Robert Heinlein another favorite
    8) Bird by Bird - Anne Lamott my favorite book on writing
    9) Tattoo You - Father Greg Boyle because again he is funny and yet the stories are filled with pathos and it would help me feel connected to other people
    10) The Haunted Mesa - Louis L'amour I love his stuff and no one does setting the way he does, but this one blends that with paranormal and historical. Plus I can't bring the whole Sackett series and just one would irritate me no end because I'd want to read them all.

    1. Wow, Maria. You've got quite the eclectic list. Since my favorite computer game involves zombies I'm going to have to find that Zombie Survival Guide. And your To Kill a Mockingbird and Taming of the Shrew remind me of the first "adult section" library books I read when my parents signed for me to have an adult card as an eighth grader. Can you say Rafael Sabatini's CAPTAIN BLOOD?

  10. [...] Writers In The Storm – This site not only has the coolest picture on any blog I read, but a way cool and always a wonderful place to stop and read. The blog – Deserted Island Books – is what the title suggests.  If you were stranded on a deserted island, what ten books would you take with you?  Fun to think about, and harder to choose than you would think.  Can you choose ten? [...]

  11. I haven't read any of the books on your list, so perhaps I should choose them! 😉 Such a tough, but fun question... Books by Maya Angelou, Julia Cameron, Douglas Kennedy and my anthologies of thriller short stories would likely make my list. Then again, I'd prefer to bring my Kindle. (Is that cheating??)

  12. Okay, I've been hanging out at More Cowbell and I can see I've been missing out on a whole lot over in this neck of the woods.

    Thank Tim l O'Brien for this awesome find! I'm bookmarking this page!

    I have a lot to catch up on. I best get to reading before I fall too far behind! 🙂

  13. Oh, my gosh! Just ten books? Have you seen my library, Fae?! Of course, you haven't. And I'll bet yours is as full as mine. Okay, my ten:
    Dune by Frank Herbert
    Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
    Wrinkle in Time by Madelyn L'Engle
    Pride of Chanur by CJ Cherryh
    Dirty White Boys by Steven Hunter
    Dracula by Bram Stoker
    Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
    The Complete Sherlock Holmes (collection by Doubleday)
    The Seventh Son by Orson Scott Card
    Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
    But, you all are coming, so I can swap books with you, too, right? 🙂
    All kidding aside, those are some of my favorite books, but if it came down to it, I'd have a really tough time not adding more to the list. (I'd need poetry and a couple of nonfiction, and of course, lots & lots of paper!)

Subscribe to WITS

Recent Posts





Copyright © 2024 Writers In The Storm - All Rights Reserved