Which books/reading matter shaped who you are?

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Titus

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I'll give this a try then, though I've got to say that I agree with what ayanna and Rance said about experience shaping ones personality and not reading literature.

  • Hagakure by Yamamoto Tsunetomo. A Japanese book, containing short stories and anecdotes on the philosophy of the samurai warriors in the era of the same name. I found the book to be so greatly different than any other western literature I'd read before, and I was engrossed in the cultural differences and what it takes to shape a human being into what it becomes. I was fourteen, maybe fifteen the first time I read it. Now I'm eighteen and I still go back to the same book and read a few passages from time to time to remind me of how something can be so vastly obscure and different from another point of view.

  • The Brothers Lionheart by Astrid Lindgren. A children’s book following the life, and after life of two brothers. Fantasy and fiction all woven together, but it's the love between those two that really shine through and make the book so beautiful in my opinion.

  • Moment of Freedom by Jens Bjørneboe. (Pronounced "Yens BYURNaboo.") A book about humanity and its conflicts with the boundaries of moral. How everything can be seen in grey, that black and white shades don't exist in our domain. Human cruelty and ignorance is the basis for this realistic tale of humanity and it's downsides. Almost biblical in nature, I will try to read this book once a year henceforth.
 

Footed P.J.

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I read "Letter to a Christian Nation" by Sam Haris, and that book really encouraged my fledgling atheist beliefs and my enduring interest in atheism.
 

BabyMullet

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Personally, I really like the dead poets, the romantics. Whitman being first among them, I have placed 'Song of the Open Road' permanently in my head. Aside from that, a few essays by Atul Gwande, the general humble-ness inducing work of Terry Pratchet, and also Douglas Adams for doing a good many things, mostly introducing me to the number 42. The answer to the question that is everything.

I mean, you can't top 42.
 

Gingy

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I likes the "a series of unfortunate events" books. But after that I didn't really like much else. On yeah, these books shaped me because: hmmm they brought out my emo side. (is that good or bad?)
 
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