I have been asked in the past to list ten books that have “inspired, moved, and enlightened” me. Here’s my list:


Labyrinths, by Jorge Luis Borges

An inspiration that never runs out of batteries for me. Shines a new light on everything; Borges follows no one’s rules but his own.

 I bought this for 50 cents at a garage sale when I was 17. The combination of story-telling and facility with the language blew my socks off. I immediately became an English major.

A book about the wild frontiers of chatbots reveals more than expected about what it means to be made of flesh and blood.

A wordless story about the immigrant experience. Peerless.

Who would have thought the Pulitzer Prize committee would fall in love with a post-apocalyptic tale with almost no dialogue? It’s clear why they did. Haunting for all the right reasons.

Mother’s milk for my own writing career. It’s a series of very short stories that are all about the same thing.

An early book that unmasked the deep influence of the invisibly small on the very large.

A rare combination of perfect wordsmithery and limitless imagination.

Oldie but goodie. Changed my life as a child.

Science fiction written in 1930. Describes the future of humans 2 billion years into the future. Boundless imagination.

What books would you put on your list? Which books made a difference for you?

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