PaperBackSwap Blog

8 Years, 8 Members, 8 Books

For PaperBackSwap’s 8 year anniversary, we asked 8 members

to tell us about 8 books that have mattered to them.

Today we feature Ani K. (goddessani)


My GR8 Eight


When I was asked to pick eight books that influenced me, my first thought was that’s too many!  Immediately followed by that’s not enough!  How to choose the eight books that have made me the person I am today?   It can’t be done because, like everyone else, I am more than the sum of my parts which includes the books I’ve read in the past and the books I read now.   In fact, the books I read now are much different than the books I used to read.   And not only because I understand the big words now!

So, how to choose?  Thinking back, there are certain books that jump out at me for different reasons so those are the ones I’ve chosen to highlight.




The first book I have to mention is Charlotte’s Web Charlotte’s Web  by E.B. White.   I remember sitting outside one day in early autumn reading this book.  I was afraid of all bugs and creepy crawlies.  But I turned my head and there was a spider’s web glistening in the sunlight and it was beautiful.  Suddenly I understood Charlotte.  And it was the first time I’d made a real connection with something I was reading.  I’m still afraid of creepy crawlies but I don’t consider spiders amongst them (except for Daddy-Long-Legs which are just some odd mutant).



When I was in my tweens I became fascinated by Florence Nightingale Faithful Friend: The Story of Florence Nightingale.  I read everything about her that I could lay my hands on.   That led me to other great women of history including Helen Keller and Anne Frank.   In all cases, I was intrigued by these women who persevered against personal odds.    They helped me become stronger in myself.


Another book from this time that I found very moving was Mrs. Mike by Benedict & Nancy Freeman.  A few years ago, there was a swap in the Games Forum where we all had to put up a book on our keeper shelf.  This is the one I chose (I ordered another copy from here!) and I was amazed at how many players mentioned how much this book had meant to them also.  Young woman of society moving to the Yukon with her brave and handsome Mountie husband.  All the trials they endured but their love remained strong.



From there, I discovered mysteries.  A lot of Agatha Christie, Ellery Queen and Erle Stanley Gardiner.  But one mystery that I’ve kept is Josephine Tey’s  The Daughter of TimeIt explores Britain’s monster ruler, King Richard III.  Was he as bad as history portrayed or was he the product of bad press?  Read it and decide for yourself!



For a while I was fascinated by true crime, especially anything to do with Jack the Ripper The Complete Jack the Ripper.  There are certain people in history, both good and bad, that we just can’t seem to leave alone.   Maybe it’s because it’s never been proven who he was and how he got away with what he did that continues to fuel my fascination.



Coming of Age in Samoa led to my fascination of anthropology (my major in college).  I was determined to find my own Samoa and follow in Margaret Mead’s footsteps!   That didn’t happen but the study of anthropology (the study of “man”) has proven to serve me well.



When I got to my 40s I found myself turning away from mysteries, true crime, spy novels.  I read several biographies and then a friend lent me Ransom by Julie Garwood.  I was hooked!   An inventive, complicated novel that included history and a happy ending!   From there, I branched out to other romance books.



Which led me to a great friendship over the love of a common series with Maria (SassenachD) here at PBS.  Maria has helped me complete my collection of Black Dagger Brotherhood books, the first being Dark Lover (Black Dagger Brotherhood, Bk 1)Who knew that vampires could be so intriguing??



I don’t know where my reading will lead me next but I know that it will be another grand adventure!







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9 Responses to “8 Years, 8 Members, 8 Books”

  1. Pat says:

    Have you read the two books after Mrs. Mike – “The Search for Joyful” and “Kathy Little Bird”? Also, if you like Mrs. Mike, read “Tisha: The Story of a Young Teacher in the Alaska Wilderness”.

  2. Ani K. (goddessani) says:

    I have read both “The Search for Joyful” and “Tisha: The Story of a Young Teach in the Alaska Wilderness.” I didn’t enjoy Joyful as much as I was hoping to. I will have to look for “Kathy Little Bird”. Thank you for the recommendation!

  3. Issa S. (Issa-345) says:

    Wow Ani, what an impossible task, and I can’t believe you were in your 40s before you turned over to the dark side lol.

  4. mistyks says:

    I can tell I am going to love this series of blogs!
    Thanks for sharing your 8 books today.
    I enjoyed it 🙂

  5. VOSTROMO says:

    Two print-stained thumbs up

  6. Ani K. (goddessani) says:

    Issa, I’m only 41 now. 😉 LOLOL

  7. Robin K. (jubead) says:

    Thanks for sharing…Charlotte Web was one of my favorites too!

  8. Maria (SassenachD) says:

    Oh Ani! Charlotte’s Web is one of my first favorites as well!!! I was in 3rd grade. I had to chuckle with seeing my name and am extremely happy in helping you complete your collection of the yummy Brotherhood!

  9. Vicky T. (VickyJo) says:

    Great blog Ani! I loved, LOVED Mrs. Mike as a teen. It’s on my keeper shelf too. 😉

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