1. Where the Sidewalk Ends, Shel Silverstein
    Supplemented by all things Roald Dalh, this book was debatably the only thing I cared about as a 2nd grader
  2. Island of the Blue Dolphins, Scott O'Dell
    Probably read this upwards of 10 times in 3rd grade. For show-and-tell just read out loud a chapter of this book because I loved it so much.
  3. Bridge to Terebithia, Katherine Paterson
    I read this in 3rd grade...and then again multiple times a year until it was assigned to me in 5th grade. Beautiful and heartbreaking. Shaped my childhood so much
  4. The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, Kate DiCamillo
    Read this book in one night in fourth grade and cried about how much I loved it. Proceeded to hide it when my mom wanted to read it to my younger sister because I didn't want to share it because it was scared other people wouldn't appreciate it properly
  5. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, Jonathan Safran Foer
    "It was one of the best days of my life, a day during which I lived my life and didn't think about my life at all." Significant because I really hadn't read anything but "The Clique" series and alike since 5th grade. This book made me start reading real books again. Consequently fueling my sophomore year existential crisis.
  6. The Glass Castle, Jeanette Walls
    More existential crisis literature.
  7. Pilgrim at Tinker Creek, Annie Dillard
    "I had been my whole life a bell, and never knew it until at that moment I was lifted and struck." Simply, this book made me open my eyes and grow up.
  8. A Short History of Nearly Everything, Bill Bryson
    Began reading this in 8th grade and was so blown away by the basics of science that I would annoy people reciting the most useless facts "did you know there are 10^26 atoms on the dot of this i?" Proceeded to lose the book. Stole the library copy spring of my senior year so I could finish it. Felt as if everything had come full circle. Made me love science. Bill Bryson is amazing.
  9. Moby Dick, Herman Melville
    I'll admit that it's long and filled with long descriptions of whale skeletons, but there were parts that knocked me completely on my ass. Wrote an essay about it and carried it around with me for weeks because this book helped me understand so much how I felt
  10. The Goldfinch, Donna Tartt
    Listened to the audiobook while driving around this summer. Had to pull over to the side of the road and cry more than once. "Is it better to throw yourself head first and laughing into the holy rage calling your name?" Perfect.