50/50 split.

I’m a voracious reader, the owner of probably 100-200 books.  They’re stashed on shelves, in boxes, practically everywhere I can cram one.  I’d say it’s split down the middle in terms of fiction vs. non-fiction.  I enjoy both equally.  I love fiction for the ability to construct in my own mind what everything and everyone looks like, which is why I tend to dislike movies based on books I’ve read, because what the director has come up with never seems to match what was in my own head.  I love non-fiction for the history, for the information, for the knowledge I can gleam from the pages as I go along.  Probably my most read non-fiction book is the Pulitzer Prize winner, A Thousand Days by Arthur Schlesinger, Jr.  It’s a hefty, 1,031 page book (if you don’t count the index, which brings it to 1,087) about JFK’s time in the White House.  I’m a huge fan of the Kennedys and own more than a few books about them, including another book by Schlesinger, this one about RFK, called Robert Kennedy and His Times.  My most read fiction book is probably The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton, incidentally one of the few movies based on a book I’ve enjoyed.  Leave it to Scorcese, hmm?  I love New York City, and I love the late 1800s, and it’s a fabulous combination of both.  I’m also a fan of poetry and prose as well, which I keep separate from fiction/non-fiction.

I’m not one of those book snobs who think one kind of writing has inherently more value than another.  I think if written well, a non-fiction book can be just as enthralling and captivating as a fiction piece.

9 comments

  1. zathra · September 29, 2014

    I’d recommend ” The Legend of Gilgamesh “, the oldest epic in human history. Most translations are incomplete ( Most of it was incised onto clay tablets ). I have the Oxford World Classics translation.

    & Coleman Barks’ translation of the poetry of Rumi is interesting as well.

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    • Beth · September 29, 2014

      Interesting. When I’m done reading the book I’m slogging through at the moment, I’ll see about finding copies of both.

      Liked by 1 person

      • zathra · September 29, 2014

        I’ve got a lot of classics. One big book which has most of the religious stories & folklore from most of the world’s major cultures from Pharaonic Egypt to Norse mythology. It needs 2 people to lift it !

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  3. loupmojo · September 29, 2014

    I agree, fiction or non, providing the author makes the content interesting enough to hold the readers attention that makes it a good book, no matter the side of the divide 😉

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  6. armandoc3 · September 29, 2014

    Agreed. Good choices on reads too!

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  7. Ryan · September 29, 2014

    “…what the director has come up with never seems to match what was in my own head.” It’s funny, until recently- as I finally started actually reading more- I always thought that movies were better. Wow, I was so wrong. I now need to apologize to all of those I nay-say’d for so many years. Books will always be better.

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