My Top Five Books of All Time

My Top Five Books of All Time

While at work the other day I was asked to answer a boatload of questions that described my hobbies for the monthly “About This Employee” newsletter. One of the first things that came to mind was how much I love to read, even if I don’t always have as much time to as I’d like. This, of course, sent me down memory lane and had me reminiscing on all the incredible books I’ve read over the years. This list is nowhere near comprehensive, and there are so many books that truly pain me to leave off, but the top five books below are the ones that I feel stand out the most in my 20+ years of reading.

#5 – A Land Remembered by Patrick D. Smith

Rounding out the bottom of my list is A Land Remembered. This was a book I would’ve probably never read if it hadn’t been a mandatory read when I was in high school. As I made my deeper and deeper into the book, it slowly snuck its way up into my list of favorite books. It’s also a pretty neat little history lesson of sorts for me as the book takes place within the state of Florida, which is where I was born and still live to this day. One of the other things I absolutely loved about this book was its split into three substantially different perspectives. Each detailed a different generation of the MacIveys, and it was a very fun way to tell the story of a family who was trying to make a name for themselves during the 19th and 20th centuries.

#4 – The Redwall Series by Brian Jacques

For those of you who do know this series, I’m sure you will recall that there are about 30 books within or related to the series. I didn’t read all of them, but my elementary years were littered with most of these stories. Redwall, Salamandastron, Martin the Warrior, and Marlfox were just a few of Brian Jacques mesmerizing novels. Each had their similarities, but were also ridiculously unique in their own way. They all completely submerged me into a realm I had never even dreamt of. The fantasy novels all enlist some form of anthropomorphic animal that is undertaking a massive task to save the people of Redwall and its surrounding areas. It is one of few book series of its kind and it is a must-read for anyone who enjoys fantasy based novels. The books were aimed at children, specifically older children, so be weary of this is you decide to indulge yourself within Brain Jacques realm!

#3 – The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

It’s very hard for me to rank this book at #3, but unfortunately it has to be done. Lord of the Rings itself was incredible, but The Hobbit is one of those books that is basically absolute perfection. I can still remember when I picked this book up in fifth grade and didn’t set it down until I was finished with it. I was glued to that book for over a week and enjoyed every single second of it. Since then, I’ve probably only re-read this book twice. But knowing that I have a child on the way I am already anticipating reading it to them countless times once they can understand the story behind this incredible book.

#2 – The Harry Potter Series by J. K. Rowling

Now, I won’t waste too much of your time here since I just recently posted a complete breakdown and ranking of the Harry Potter series, but it goes without saying that these books were essentially my entire childhood. From the second I opened my first HP book until my freshman year when The Deathly Hallows was released I always dreamt of the wizarding world. J.K. Rowling’s series was atop my list of favorites for years, but just recently it was toppled by ASOIAF. These books have the most read throughs for me and I know quite a disgusting amount about these books. I actually corrected the librarians answer key when I was in fourth grade too. Super nerd alert haha. Harry Potter and his crew taught me so many things over the years, and if you haven’t read this series yet you’re doing an immense disservice to yourself!

#1 – The A Song of Ice and Fire Series by George R. R. Martin

Finally, the moment we’ve all been waiting for. And the #1 book/series of all time goes to… A Song of Ice and Fire! I know I know, this series isn’t even done yet (and it honestly might never be), but there is something about the way GRRM writes that I can’t get enough of. I’ve even bought his children’s book, The Ice Dragon, for when my child is born haha. His writing style was something I was very unfamiliar with but grew to love almost immediately. He actually inspired me to begin my own novel in a similar POV fashion as his ASOIAF books. The first five books of this series are all amazing, however, they’re not all the same caliber to me for one specific reason: I watched the show before I read the books. With that being said, the third, fourth, and fifth books are much more intriguing to read, but that in no way takes anything away from the first two!

The Lord of The Rings Series, The Great Gatsby, To Kill A Mockingbird, these are just a few others that had every right to make this list. Reading just has a way of making us lose track of time while we immerse ourselves in the fantasy worlds of these spectacular authors. I hope one day my books can influence someone the way that some of these have influenced my life. When all is said and done, these books just hit on a different level, and they will forever hold a special place in my heart.

Thanks again for reading the list of my top five books. As always, please leave some feedback and give my page a follow so you can experience all of my content. I’d love to hear from all of my wonderful readers, so be sure to rate and comment often!

A Song of Ice and Fire Review

A Song of Ice and Fire Review

Welcome back! It’s so crazy to think were already halfway through our first YEAR of weekly reviews. We’ve covered some awesome subjects over the last 23 weeks, but this week we will dive into one of my favorite authors, George R. R. Martin (AKA G.R.R.M.) and his fantasy series, ASOIAF.

G.R.R.M., as I’ve already mentioned, is one of my favorite authors. His A Song of Ice and Fire series may just end up being my favorite series of all time too. Granted, only five of the seven books have been released, but G.R.R.M. would really need to screw up to taint the series for me. And in all honesty, the way the TV series ended I cant imagine its anywhere but up from there.

Game of Thrones (2012) Episode Title: Blackwater Season 2, Episode 9 Air Date: May 27, 2012 Jerome Flynn as Bronn

These first two books were masterfully crafted yet they didn’t really do much for me. I had already watched the first few seasons of Game of Thrones so everything was already pretty redundant. That is in no way G.R.R.M.’s fault though, as I just didn’t know the books were there until it was too late. Plus HBO essentially copied the books word for word. Book three was where this series really began standing out for me. As little details that had been left out of the show began surfacing in the book, my mind immediately started thinking of all the potential theories arising (ahem, reddit). Little did I know, these books had been out for ages by the time I got to them in 2018, and there was an unimaginable amount of theories for me to sift through.

Books four and five of ASOIAF then began to drastically change. New characters, new places traveled, and new story lines that are so much more interesting than the ones HBO went with (no shade at HBO, just think the mastermind’s story was better lol). These books are also extremely interesting because they were originally one book. G.R.R.M. actually had these two books as one but had to split it due to size. This pushed his six book series to seven, and led to another six years of waiting for his beloved fans. He really descends into the other areas of his realm in these two books as well.

These books will easily go down as some of the greatest fantasy books of all time. They’re even a pretty big piece of the reason I began writing my own book. I wanted to immerse myself in my own Seven Kingdoms, and G.R.R.M. 100% opened that door for me. I don’t think I, or the countless others, could ever thank him enough.