One evening, a Sufi stopped by the roadside to read a book. He lit a bright lamp then walked some distance away and lit a small candle. He sat by the candle and read. People passing by asked, “Why don’t you read by the lamp?” The Sufi replied, “The bright lamp attracts all the moths. Here I can read my book in peace.” (Adapted from A Perfumed Scorpion by Idries Shah)
Blockbuster books attract many readers, but I’m attracted by books that are almost forgotten. Here are a few favourite hidden gems:
- Till We Have Faces by C. S. Lewis retells the myth of Cupid and Psyche; and which Lewis called “far and away the best of my books.”
- Catastrophe, the strange stories of Dino Buzzati – a brilliant collection of surreal stories.
- Daydreamer by Ian McEwan – imaginative stories about a boy who daydreams to cope with growing up.
- The Importance of Living, by Lin Yutang – thoughts on everything by a Chinese writer and inventor
- Drift by William Mayne – survival story about a North American Indian girl and a white boy.