Sometimes, we read a book that resounds so strongly with our own experiences that everything seems different after completing it. For better or worse, some books tell us things we didn't want to know. They make clear the situations we couldn't untangle for ourselves. Or, they reassure us that we did make the right choices, it's okay that we're unsure, and that things might work out in the end.
When I try to think of a single book like that in my life, I have a hard time. Because there isn't just one; there are dozens! In thinking about this, I came across a project started by the Director of TED-Ed, Logan Smalley, in which he posted his phone number online and invited people to leave him voicemails about the books that have had the most lasting impact on them. He has shared some of them online in a project called "Call me Ishmael."
I have included a few of those voicemail videos in this card:
1. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer (3:35)
2. The Harry Potter Series (2:00)
3. The Sneetches by Dr. Seuss (4:09)
4. The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank (1:56)
5. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (1:44)
6. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger (3:15)
7. The Atlas of Human Anatomy for the Artist (1:55)
8. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (2:35)
9. The Merriam Webster Dictionary (2:28)
10. Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese (2:31)
I'm going to try to read all of these books (if I haven't already). If they seriously impacted someone else, why can't they impact me, too? There's the chance that a new view will be more comfortable or clear to me after reading.
Either way, it's worth a shot. Join me in checking out these books, and if you have a book that really inspired, affected, or changed you, share it in the comments! I'd love to hear more about it.