I’ve just updated my recommended reading list and thought I might include it as a post. My hope is that you will comment, suggesting books I’ve overlooked or some of your favorites that you would like to share.
Here is an updated (but not comprehensive list) of books I have found to be enriching and well written:
Literary/Mainstream Fiction: Sue Monk Kidd: The Secret Life of Bees; Barbara Kingsolver: The Poisonwood Bible; John Steinbeck: East of Eden, The Grapes of Wrath; Betty Smith: A Tree Grows in Brooklyn; J.D. Salinger: Catcher in the Rye; F. Scott Fitzgerald: The Great Gatsby; Lisa Genoa: Still Alice; Isabel Allende: Island Beneath the Sea; Chris Cleave: Little Bee; Lisa See: Snow Flower and the Secret Fan;
Non Fiction and Memoir: Sue Monk Kidd and Ann Kidd Taylor: Traveling with Pomegranates; Elizabeth Gilbert: Eat, Pray, Love; Jeanette Walls: The Glass Castle; Bill O’Reilly: A Bold, Fresh Piece of Humanity; Mitch Albom: Tuesdays with Morrie
Spirituality and Inspirational: The Holy Bible (TNIV); Francis Chan: Forgotten God–Reversing our Tragic Neglect of the Holy Spirit; Rabbi David Cooper: God is a Verb; St. John of the Cross: The Dark Night of the Soul; Gerald May: The Dark Night of the Soul
Poets by Author: Mary Oliver, Stanley Kunitz, Rumi, Jane Kenyon, Maya Angelou, Robert Frost, Ted Kooser, T.S. Eliot, e.e.cummings, Pablo Neruda, William Carlos Williams, Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Ranier Maria Rilke, Langston Hughs, Matsuo Basho, Thomas Merton
Books about Writing: Anne Lamont: Bird by Bird; Heather Sellers: Page by Page; The Writer’s Digest Series: Write Great Fiction; Natalie Goldberg: Writing Down the Bones