As a Young kid/teen. Books not pictured on my typewriter are ones I've lent to people and never got back. Sigh. Also, it was so hard to make this list. I think I was shaped by a million books. So I apologize for the length of the list but...I love books.
  1. Heidi
    It was the first book I read in English. I got this copy when I was nine years old and kept it all these years because it played a huge role in my transition from living in Mexico to America
  2. The Outsiders
    I can probably quote this book from beginning to end. And I still love it even after all these years.
  3. To Kill A Mockingbird
    I read this book long before it was on any school required reading list. It still affects me just as much as it did the first time I read it.
  4. The House On Mango Street
    The idea that a Mexican American could write a book about being Latina blew my mind. It was the first time I thought I might have a story to share with the world. When I met the author last year, I told her that she inspired me to write. She told me "echale ganas!" This could not be real life!
  5. Love In The Time Of Cholera
    I do this thing where if I find a book I love, I read everything I can find by the same author. So I read this book and immediately devoured A Thousand Years In Solitude. Not sure which novel shaped me more. I absolutely love them both.
  6. The Little Prince
    It made me feel understood as a child, as a teen, as an adult. This book is one of the first friends I ever made and we continue that friendship today.
  7. The Sound And The Fury
    Again, you could also add any other Faulkner book to this list. I read them all over and over all through middle school. Yes, I was considered super cool by my peers.
  8. Jane Eyre
    And here we have it. The book that all exes can blame for my need to be solely independent, not want to be rescued or protected in any relationship. They can blame this book if they want. But I have to be honest and admit I was this way long before I read this in 7th grade.
  9. The Color Purple
    It was one of the first books that brought so many important issues to the forefront. I adore every last word in this novel.
  10. Like Water For Hot Chocolate
    If you've only seen the movie, I beg of you, pick up a copy today! This book is so much. If you want an insight into the Mexican Heritage, this author has given the world the keys with which to begin the journey.
  11. Howl
    I know, how typical, teen angst and rebellion and all that stuff. But man this book opened my eyes to some stuff. The lines in it...I just...I want to write like this.