Three Books for a Desert Island (A Blog Hop)

How’s this for a blog hop challenge? Fellow blogger and writer friend Joanna Maciejewska tagged me on the Three Books for a Desert Island Blog Hop, which she created over the summer. The idea is to choose three books in your collection that you’d bring with you if you had to travel to a deserted island. It’s a neat idea, and a tough one, too – it took me a couple months to figure out which books I’d bring with me! But now I’m ready to share my choices. 🙂

First, let’s go over…

The Rules for the Three Books for a Desert Island Blog Hop

  1. Pick only from the print books (paperbacks or hardcovers) you currently own. No e-books, since there’s no electricity on the desert island, and no going through your wishlist, because you’re leaving tomorrow. 😉
  2. Choose only three books. A trilogy counts as three books, unless you have an omnibus edition (and a picture to prove it).
  3. Feel free to post pictures of your books.
  4. Tag as many people as you want to pass the fun further (or don’t tag anyone).
  5. Grab the graphic from Joanna’s original post here or make your own, and link back to my post when yours goes live.

So What Are My Three Desert Island Reads? Here They Are…

Book #1: The Inheritance Trilogy Omnibus by N.K. Jemisin

I’m glad Joanna included omnibuses in Rule #2, because that means this beautiful monster of a book could come with me! The omnibus edition of N.K. Jemisin’s debut fantasy series contains all three novels (The Hundred Thousand KingdomsThe Broken Kingdoms, and The Kingdom of Gods) as well as a companion novella, The Awakened KingdomSo altogether, this baby is more than 1440 pages long!

I’ve actually read the first two novels, so I only have The Kingdom of Gods and the novella left now. (In fact, I’m hoping to take care of both before the end of this year.) But going to a deserted island would be the perfect opportunity to finish the series and then re-read it later on. Jemisin’s worlds are so intricate, her characters so complex, and her ideas so clever that I’d love to go back to the first two novels if I ever have time.

Another reason why I’d bring the Inheritance Omnibus? Because of this.

Yes! N.K. Jemisin signed the book for me in 2015. She was teaching a world-building seminar at Writer’s Digest Conference, and though I hadn’t read any of her books by then, I’d heard so much praise for them that I was still thrilled to meet her. So I bought the omnibus at the conference bookstore, then asked her after her seminar if she could sign it. She even sketched a globe with continents and clouds to tie it in with some of her world-building tips (how it’s important to build a fictional world from the ground up, considering geology, geography, climate, etc.). So the Inheritance Omnibus is one of the most treasured books on my shelves, for its stories as well as the the special memory inside.

Book #2: The Found and the Lost by Ursula K. Le Guin

I’d feel lost if I didn’t bring a UKLG book with me on such a trip. So I chose The Found and the Lost, a complete volume of Le Guin’s novellas – and a doorstopper of one, too, at 800 pages. (Between this and the Inheritance Omnibus, I may have to look for a bigger suitcase!) Most of the included stories are new to me. The three exceptions are “The Finder,” “Dragonfly,” and “On the High Marsh,” which are also included in Tales from Earthsea. But I have every intention on revisiting them when I finally open The Found and the Lost. Plus, any opportunity to immerse myself in UKLG’s lyrical writing, intricate worlds, and overall imaginative and intelligent storytelling is worthwhile. Then again, Ursula is my favorite author of all time.

And the cover. It’s… well… ❤

Book #3: New and Selected Poems, Volume One by Mary Oliver

Now that I’m back in the poetry swing, I’d also bring a book of poems with me to the deserted island. So why not go with another trusted favorite, Mary Oliver? 🙂

Out of the several chapbooks and collections of hers on my shelves, I’ll go with New and Selected Poems, Volume OneIt’s the largest Mary Oliver “book” I own – though at 225 pages, it’s nowhere near as hefty as the Inheritance Omnibus and The Found and the Lost. But it’s a “greatest hits” of sorts, presenting selections from Mary’s first eight book as well as thirty new poems. Altogether, it’s a treasure trove of observations and reflections on nature, gratitude, joy, and the extraordinary in everyday life. Her work is so perceptive, so powerful, and so simply yet beautifully written that it’s impossible to not be moved by it.

Who Else Wants to Join the Three Books for a Desert Island Blog Hop?

My memory’s fuzzy on who I have or haven’t tagged on recent blog hops. So if you think this might be a fun challenge, then go for it! I only ask that you give Joanna credit for inventing this blog hop and link back to both my post and hers.

How about you? What three books would you take with you if you traveled to a deserted island, and why? Have you read any of the books discussed above?

20 thoughts on “Three Books for a Desert Island (A Blog Hop)

  1. Ahaha, I was gonna say, picking a trilogy is kinda cheating, isn’t it? 😉 But then I saw the addendum to the rule and after seeing your pic I remember that they did release the omnibus of Jemisin’s Inheritance novels. And good choice with Le Guin’s collection too, with the added bonus that it is so huge that it should last you a while on a desert island 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • *lol* Which is why I’m glad that Joanna included omnibuses in her rules! 🙂

      Yes, I remember that you reviewed one of UKLG’s collections of shorter works. And for me, it was a toss-up between The Found & The Lost The Real & The Unreal, which features her short stories. But then I compared the covers – and while they’re both stunning, the colors and waterwall on The Found & The Lost tipped the scales in its favor.

      So, yeah, I agree that these books would keep me busy for a while. Thanks for stopping by, Mogsy!


    • Thanks, Briana! I’d take LOTR with me, too. But I own them all as separate books, and knowing me, I’d regret not being able to bring other books or authors with me. 😉

      What else would you bring, out of curiosity?


      • Such a tough decision! Probably Anne of Green Gables because it’s my other favorite book and also uplifting, which could be good on a desert island. And maybe one of the books I have about learning how to do something because I’d have plenty of time to actually teach myself. I could probably teach myself basic Hebrew or something before I was rescued. :p

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Smart choice with the omnibus. 😊 This is a hard challenge. I think have to take either the red rising trilogy, or the lord of the rings trilogy. I might pick something else on a different day though!

    I recently met a few authors at a book festival, and everything though i hadn’t read anything by a couple of them, i still found it exciting to meet actually published writers. 😁

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Phoenix! And that’s why choosing three was so hard. I went back and forth on which ones I’d take for a while before I finally wrote this post. It could have easily been three totally different books!

      It’s fun to meet authors at events and book signings, isn’t it? 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • It is. I am on the lookout all the time for opportunities to meet more. I got a couple of books signed at the festival and came away with a renewed dream of having my own book signings one day. 😁

        Liked by 1 person

    • *lol* I actually have three omnibuses: Narnia, The Inheritance Trilogy, and N.K. Jemisin’s Dreamblood Duology (which will go in my TBR pile after I finish the Inheritance omnibus). But I don’t think omnibuses are all that common to begin with…?

      I just Googled “Harry Potter omnibus,” and it doesn’t appear to exist. (Though they do sell the entire 7-book collection.) Then again, if an HP omnibus DID exist… gosh, it would have to be at least 5,000 pages! XD 😮

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Some great choices here and I’m glad you decided to have fun with this little challenge.
    I haven’t read Jemisin yet, but she’s on my TBR list. I’m also behind on LeGuin – I’ve read some of her works back in the day, but not much. I’ve never read anything by Mary Oliver, but the name does sound familiar.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Joanna! 🙂 I’d be very interested in hearing your thoughts on N.K. Jemisin’s work when you get around to reading it.

      Mary Oliver has been around for a long time. Her first poetry books were published in the early 1980s, but she was writing years before then, too. I read one of her older books, “Dream Work” (published in 1986), earlier this year, and it’s interesting to see how her writing has evolved since then yet how certain themes and topics continue to inspire her and shine through.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’ll get to Jemisin… eventually ;). As at the beginning of every year, I hope to tackle my TBR file (even though I know I’ll likely fail miserably).
        I guess as a somewhat “contemporary” poet, she never made it to Poland (and back in 80’s the communistic government wasn’t keen on popularizing anything from “the rotten West”, poetry also wasn’t looked keenly on). And later, when the “gates” opened, we were initially flooded with pulp. I don’t think she was ever translated into Polish, and when I started reading in English, my poetry phase pretty much died out already.

        Liked by 1 person

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