The Happy Place Five #8: Deserted Island Edition

18th August 2021

The Happy Place Five banner in dark blue rimmed in gold with a golden book and golden starsThe Happy Place 5 – take a Discord chat, throw a bunch of bookish people in there together to keep each other sane over the course of a pandemic, and voilà: a new monthly feature is born. On the first Wednesday each month, we will highlight our top five books for a certain topic or theme. You can find the posts of my fellow Happy Place readingrats linked below!


Oh look, I can hardly believe my own eyes! A new The Happy Place 5 post! It’s been a while. This week’s topic is “Books we would want with us while stranded on a deserted island” – and it actually didn’t take that long for me to make up this list, because I immediately had two criteria in mind:

  • The books have to be long – who knows how long I will be stuck there!
  • The books should have either been on my tbr for ages or be those that I mean to read but will probably not get to anytime soon any other way.

While I have quite a few that fulfill both criteria, this list came together rather quickly:

Saga: Compendium One
(Saga #1-54)
by Brian K. Vaughan & Fiona Staples

So this whopping 1,300+ pages brick of a book collects the first 54 issues of Saga. I haven’t read a single one of them yet. I know. I’m told this series is brilliant. Time and time again. So I got this when it was first announced – I’m just that easily persuaded into buying books. I just haven’t started it yet. So of course a deserted island might help with that.

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西遊記 [Journey to the West]
by 吳承恩 [Wu Cheng’en]

Nope, of course I’m not going to read this in Mandarin (yet – hahaha, who am I kidding). I currently only know 50 characters max (though I’m trying, ok. I really want to learn this language). I have this pretty German edition I got at Frankfurt Book Fair when I started to get more interested in Chinese series and literature. At over 1,300 pages, it’s quite awe-inspiring so I haven’t picked it up yet.

World Without End
(Kingsbridge #2)
by Ken Follett

I can’t even remember when I read The Pillars of the World. I think it must have been almost 10 years by now. I really enjoyed it, but it took me quite some time so I think that’s the reason why I haven’t dared to pick this one up. I’m not reading a lot of historical fiction set prior to the 20th century, but I enjoy it from time to time.

The Chronicles of Narnia
(The Chronicles of Narnia #1-7)
by C.S. Lewis

Don’t even ask me when I got this one, because it has to be at least 15 years. I really liked the first and second film adaptations back in the days and always wanted to read the books, except … well, I don’t even know. I think in the beginning, this was quite daunting considering that at that point, my English was still pretty basic with only a couple of years of classes in school behind me. And then I kind of wanted to read it each year in December, because this feels like a December book, but I never managed to do so.

(Dune #1)
by Frank Herbert

My dad owns the whole series in German and at one point, I decided that they are now mine. You see, I just decided to give them asylum in my room so they won’t end up in a dark and lonely place and well, he’s never asked about them again, so there’s that. I still haven’t read it yet and I really wanted to do that before the new film comes out (which looks so good!). Now that it’s scheduled for October, that deserted island holiday needs to happen asap. (Not that I will be sitting in a movie theatre in October.)

So, these are my five bookish companions for killing time on that (in)voluntary deserted island getaway. Which books would you take along? If you want some more input and inspiration, head over to the other Happy Place readingrats:


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2 responses

  • Hello my dear daughter,
    I wondered whereto my Dune books vanished. I should have known, books are your favoured prey… 😉 … but I know them in good hands.
    Do you guess which books I would take to the lonely island? ….. Yes, you are right, I would take the five parts of the trilogy “The Hichhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” with me.


    “The Guide says there is an art to flying”, said Ford, “or rather a knack. The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.”

    • Well, Palili, at least now you know where they are – just chilling on my wardrobe opposite the German Lord of the Rings editions I snatched even earlier . But they’re still at home, so there for the taking if you want to reread them.

      And yeah, that’s what I’d thought. Though technically, you could cheat and take another two books, since it’s only a trilogy …

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