some of my favorite books

A few “What I’ve Been Reading…” posts ago someone suggested I do a post about my favorite books. I’m not sure why that never occurred to me before. Perhaps because I’m always surprised when people have the same kind of strange reading taste as I do. I was so nervous to blog about the books I liked at first but this has seriously been great. I love connecting with other folks over books about strippers, dead bodies and other normally taboo subjects. So, here we go…

My top five books, in this order, are…
Rant by Chuck Palahniuk
Survivor by Chuck Palahniuk
Geek Love by Katherine Dunn
Stiff by Mary Roach
The Contortionist’s Handbook by Craig Clevenger

I wasn’t instantly in love with Rant the first time I read it. I honestly had no idea what the heck was going on throughout the first half the first time I read it through. Party crashing? Plugging in? What in the world are you talking about? But by the end of the book I knew I had to re-read it because I needed to understand what it was about. I’ve read Rant more times than I’ve read any other book ever. I feel like I could re-read it a million more times and still find new things to love. It’s with out a doubt my all time favorite book.

Survivor is my second favorite book and also by my favorite author, Chuck Palahniuk. I think Chuck Palahniuk is a brilliant writer and it especially shows in Rant and Survivor.
Geek Love was instantly a favorite, I even blogged about how much I loved it after I finished. Like I said in my original post about it it’s definitely not a book for everyone, just like most of the books I’ll be talking about in this post, but if our reading interests seem to overlap you have to read Geek Love. It’s incredible.

What’s not to love about a book about “the curious lives of human cadavers“?! The description on Amazon sums it up perfectly – “Stiff is an oddly compelling, often hilarious exploration of the strange lives of our bodies postmortem.” You’ll read about crash test dummies, beating-heart cadavers used in organ transplants, practicing surgery on the dead and more!

The Contortionist’s Handbook I found by accident while looking for books on contorting. I was pretty bummed to find it was actually a novel until I saw
that my all time favorite author, Chuck Palahniuk, said “I swear to God
this is the best book I have read in easily five years. Easily. Maybe
ten years.” about the book. Mr. Palahniuk wasn’t kidding. Craig Clevenger’s writing is incredible. It’s so easy to get sucked into this story.

Oh, Chuck Palahniuk! How do I even begin to express my love for Chuck Palahniuk? It all started with Snuff four years ago, that was my first of his books. I’m not completely in love with Snuff, it’s probably one of my least favorites of his but it was clearly good enough for me to start a love affair with the rest of his books. I tore through every single book he’d ever written after finishing it.

Often I get asked to rank his books both out of curiosity from other fans and from readers that are new to Chuck Palahniuk. So here we go : Rant, Survivor, Diary, Choke, Lullaby, Fight Club, Invisible Monsters Remix, Invisible Monsters, Pygmy, Haunted, Damned, Tell All, Snuff, then Fugitives and Refugees & Stranger Than Fiction (because I really prefer his fiction best).

I’m a die hard Palahniuk fan. A lot of people haven’t liked his last few books but I will continue to purchase (on the day it comes out, mind you!) and read anything he write for the entirety of his career. Sorry, I’m not sorry. I love that man.

My favorite non-fiction writer is Mary Roach. After reading Stiff I was hooked on her writing. She’s funny, her writing is down to Earth and easy to understand even if it’s on things you never thought you’d be reading about and my goodness, her footnotes are to die for. If you haven’t yet, you need to give Mary Roach a shot!

Here are seven more random books I really really liked…
Candy Girl by Diablo Cody
Strip City by Lily Burana
Down Among The Dead Men by Michelle Williams
Electrified Sheep by Alex Boese
Steal This Book by Abbie Hoffman
The Dead Janitors Club by Jeff Kilma
Curtains by Tom Jokinen

The seven books above are ones I really enjoyed reading but just couldn’t put in a category along with my all time favorites. I do highly recommend them all though.

More books you should read…
 Elf Girl by Rev Jen,
I am not myself these days by Josh Kilmer-Purcell, Women by Charles Bukowski, Live Nude Elf by Reverend Jen,
Johns, Marks, Tricks and Chickenhawks by David Henry Sterry,  Let’s Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson, The Long Hard Road Out of Hell by Marilyn Manson, Helter Skelter by Vincent Bugliosi and How to Make Love Like a Pornstar by Jenna Jameson.

And of course, if you’re looking for more to read you can check out my old “What I’ve been reading…” posts under the “books” tag.

Author: Kaylah

Just a green haired gal from Cleveland, Ohio.

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  • i read geek love on your recommendation and LOVED IT. you are my favorite to get book recommendations from because i love to read about the same kinds of things. I just finished "i am not myself these days" and just started "elf girl." keep up the book posts!

  • I, too, read "Geek Love" on your recommendation and was quite impressed with it! I had a book hangover from it – I couldn't start another book cuz I was still in Geek Love's world! I really like how unique the book was…it kind of defies categorization (i.e. "Romance" or "Drama" …etc.). Anyway, thanks for the reco!