Oh, the pressure – how can one possibly narrow a list of must-reads to only http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1173804482l/330244.jpgfive? There are so many. Today I happen to feel moved by the Southern women writers I’ve been reading recently, short stories, and books I read in high school which have stayed with me as life-long favorites or literary influences:

1. The Member of the Wedding, Carson McCullers

2. Don’t Look Now (short stories) and Rebecca (novel) by Daphne DuMaurier

3. 3 by Flannery O’Connor (short stories/novellas including Wise Blood and A Good Man is Hard to Find)

4. To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee

5. The Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger (I know, I know. I’m sorry, I can’t help it. I loved it then, and still do.)

– Jennifer Messner

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