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Siri Hustvedt’s 10 Favorite Books

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Bookseller One Grand Books has asked celebrities to name the ten titles they’d take to a desert island, and they’ve shared the results with Vulture. Below is writer and Memories of the Future author Siri Hustvedt’s list.

Fragments, by Heraclitus

No one can agree about what Heraclitus actually meant or how to characterize his philosophy. This is promising for desert island reading because I could spend hours puzzling over just one of riddles.

Complete Works of Aristotle

I refer to the philosopher often and would need him on my island, too.

The King James Bible

Lots of exciting stories, poems, and mysteries for a stranger in a strange land.

Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes

Although it was published in 1605, this hilarious and brilliant book seems to contain all the possibilities of the novel in a single volume.

Either/Or by Soren Kierkegaard

Kierkegaard’s ironies have driven me crazy for many years, but I crave them anyway. Every time I read it, this novel as philosophy or philosophy as novel never stops producing new meanings.

Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

This diabolical work of fiction is so complex in its structure that I remain awed by it. I have no doubt that I could read it again and again and still not get to the bottom of it.

The Collected Poems of Emily Dickinson

Dickinson has amazed me since I was 11 years old.

Gravity and Grace by Simone Weil

This extraordinary book takes you into a luminous mind at work.

To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf

My admiration for this book is complete. It is as beautiful, poignant, and ruthless as anything I have ever read.

Process and Reality by Alfred North Whitehead

Whitehead is a bold philosopher who fascinates me, but this book is maddeningly difficult. Weeks of reading and rereading might make it a wee bit easier.

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Siri Hustvedt’s 10 Favorite Books