And Why Those Books?

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Funny Once: Antonya Nelson. Because stories should be funny and real

Pippi Longstocking: Astrid Lindgren. Because there's not a lot of daylight between lying and telling great stories

Remains of the Day: Kazuo Ishiguro. Because narrators do not always have to be reliable

The Art of Eating: MFK Fisher. Because food writing should be about life as much as food

Ladder of Years: Anne Tyler. Because running away from home is the greatest theme in literature

The Odyssey: Homer. Because finding your way home again is the second greatest theme in literature