This week over at my other blog, The Broke and the Bookish, we are talking about the top ten books that made us cry. It’s funny because I used to not be a person who cried during movies or books. Now, I find myself crying during books, commercials, tv (even reality tv..like when a certain Real World cast was saying bye to each other on the season finale lol) and movies. I am such a sentimental sap and I don’t know when the switch was turned on to let the waterworks come whenever they so desired.
Anyways, here are some books that moved me to tears for various reasons–personal connections, subject matter, etc.
1. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer (aka the love my of life..apple of my eye..aside from my boyfriend) – This is one of my favorite books and it made me cry harder than most others. Oskar is such an amazing character and this book gave me “heavy boots” for a long time. I think I would be accurate in saying that I cried for a good portion of the end of the book.
2. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak– Ok, this book literally had me doing that I was making that funny crying noise where you can’t really breathe that kind of sounds like hiccups but it’s not. I was close to wailing I think. I stayed up and read this book until I finished it a 4am and I went through almost a whole roll of toilet paper and my nose was as red as Rudolph the next day and my eyes were reminiscent of the kids who were always high as a kite in high school. Freaking so SAD (yet beautiful at the same time) this book is..but I don’t want to give an ounce of it away.
3. Night by Elie Wiesel — I was reading this one a plane which was not one of my brighter moments. I mean, who does that, really. Reading something written about the Holocaust BY A HOLOCAUST SURVIVOR on a plane is just, in general, not a good idea. You need to read something like that by yourself in a quiet room so it receives the respect it deserves and you can let your emotions figure themselves out. I was trying my hardest not to start bawling while trying to not let myself my foot get run over by the cart and trying not to punch the annoying lady sitting next to me who had to use the bathroom every 2 seconds. Needless to say, this was a gut-wrenching read that haunts me still and is a chilling reminder of what hate and indifference breeds.
4. The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger - I don’t want to spoil this for people who haven’t read this but there were a few parts that made me cry. If I say anything, I think it ruins it. However, there was one scene that I can mention without spoiling, that made me cry. It’s just a tiny paragraph and it’s in the morning and he gets up and turns the tv on and watches as the events of September 11 unfold. It just made me so sad at the thought of knowing something like that was going to happen and knowing there is nothing you can do about it. It made a huge impact on me for some reason.
5. Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson – I’ve never gone through what this main character went through in this book but it tore me to pieces knowing that others have. The story of this girl was authentic and I hated knowing that other people out there felt like they didn’t have a voice, that they had to live with something like that, with fear and guilt.
6. A Grief Observed by CS Lewis — This books is basically CS Lewis’ journal when he lost his wife. I received this from a good friend when my mom passed away and I was instructed to read this when I felt like I could handle thinking about things. I think I read it too soon but either way the two times I read it I got something new out of it. I felt deeply in some way. It felt nice to read the words of someone who had gone what I had gone through and to know that I wasn’t crazy in what I was feeling. There is nothing more amazing than to know that in that moment. I cried tears of joy and sadness but mostly of grief. I needed to, I think, because I was hellbent on not letting it out any other way.
7. Love is A Mix Tape by Rob Sheffield — Another favorite book and this one hit close to home. I think it impacted me the most on a personal level; aside from the CS Lewis book I mentioned. Sheffield bear his soul and his memories through one of my favorite things–music– a shared passion between my mother and I. I think of my mother when I think of a lot of music that she blared as we rode top down in that red Firebird convertible. I live in those moments of Meatloaf, Journey and Creedence Clearwater Revival sometimes.
8. History of Love by Nicole Krauss — What a moving work of fiction! That’s all I’m going to say about that. You need to read this little gem for yourself.
9. A Child Called It by David Pelzer – I read this in high school and it was the only book, at that point in time, that made me cry. This was hard to endure and I only stuck it out because I felt like if he could endure what he did in his childhood, then I could read it. Also, it was for a school project, but that isn’t important. This book still haunts me and makes me want to do terrible things to people that abuse their children like that. I feel remiss even calling it abuse–it was honestly torture.
10. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath — I read this during my senior year in high school– a time when I had temporarily moved out of my house and had found out that my mother had brain cancer. This book mirrored some of darkest feelings and I think it made me cry because I didn’t feel alone but it also made me cry for the people who felt way worse than I did. I knew I would get through it and I felt deeply for people who could just never see that light at the end of that dark, depressing tunnel. This was one of those books that found me when I needed it for whatever reason.