Top Ten Books From My Shelf

During the past three and a half years, I have read hundreds of books; when I finish one that I want to recommend, I post a review.

I have read fiction, non-fiction, children’s books, classics, and books by indie authors.

It was tough to leave out some I love, but here are my Top Ten, in no particular order. Click on the links to see the original reviews. A link to a list of all reviews is at the end of this post.

Okay for Now, Gary D. Schmidt. Junior high schooler Doug Swieteck’s voice touched my heart and made me laugh. This is no formula book; it is filled with twists as the boy seeks refuge from bullies.

Another Kind of Madness: A Journey Through the Stigma and Hope of Mental Illness, Stephen Hinshaw. The author discovers why his father was silent so much and absent from home often.

Rocket Boys, Homer Hickam. Adapted to a great movie, October Sky. The book is even better.

Chasing Zorba: A Journey of Self Discovery in a VW Bus, Jerry Steimel. Jerry is one of my favorite indie authors with this compelling story.

Free Country, George Mahood. George and his buddy set out, wearing just Union Jack boxer shorts, from Land’s End, with a goal: ride bicycles the length of Britain. They begin with no bikes. No money or credit cards. “What?” you ask. It is a true story. George Mahood is one of England’s best contemporary authors.

The Trail Provides: A Boy’s Memoir of Thru-Hiking the PCT, David Smart. I have read a tall stack of books about treks on the Pacific Crest Trail. This is my favorite.

Henry David Thoreau: A Life, Laura Dassow Walls. This one is a gift to those who appreciate Thoreau’s contributions.

Way Out There: Adventures of a Wilderness Trekker, J. Robert Harris. Many of us think hiking a long-distance trail is an adventure. J. Robert Harris’ travels redefine adventure.

Walden on Wheels, Ken Ilgunas. The author graduates college and begins a life that may make you think, “I wish I could do that.”

On the Shortness of Life, Seneca. A classic. Brilliant. I expect some of you have read this one–several times.

I appreciate very much your taking the time to stop by. I would love to hear what you think about any or all of these books, or your own favorites.

A list of all book reviews on Books and My Backpack.

Free Country: What a Ride!

Wearing just underwear emblazoned with the British flag, George Mahood and his buddy left Land’s End in southwest England without a penny, determined to bicycle to the northern tip of Great Britain. They would rely on the generosity and good hearts of the people, from pub owners and accommodation hosts to the police.

They would not solicit cash, but would accept meals, rooms, clothes, old bicycles and whatever else they needed. They would offer to wash dishes and do other work. They were out to prove that people are good.

If you have not read a book by George Mahood, you are in for a treat. His writing in Free Country is even more entertaining than his story’s premise and is powered by humor and down-to-earth human touches.

I doubt it will be the last George Mahood book you read.