I think our favorite books, the ones that touch us, tell a lot about who we are. The way we see the world, the kinds of things that get us going.
Interesting: I took a class where we discussed McCarthy's The Road at length. [My favorite book currently.] Everyone in the class for the most part really enjoyed it, but what was interesting was learning what people's interpretations of the book were, why they liked it.
I am a really optimistic person for the most part - hopeful of humanity, forgiving to a fault, and believing of the good in people. I read McCarthy's book and took away from it, a very beautiful, hopeful message, in spite of the bad.
My friend in the class is a more pessimistic, cynical person. We saw the same scenes in two completely different lights - where I saw beauty, love, selflessness, she saw selfishness, hopelessness, despair. For her, the book was depressing and bleak. For me, it was the ability for the world to transcend the bleakness.
I digress a little bit, because that's more how you read a book than simply what you read.
But sometimes I pick up a book recommended by a friend who raves about it, and if I don't like it that much, I wonder what it says about my friend and what it says about me. Besides just aesthetics, I feel like books touch a certain chord, and I wonder what kind of truths and lenses with which we see the world make these people feel an affinity towards these books.
I have a friend whose taste in literature I trust intrinsically. I don't think we are necessarily similar people - we don't even necessarily see the world in the same way. But I think it has something to do with what we appreciate in the world, and a certain belief in certain things. Hmm.
I think you can tell a lot about a person from their favorite book(s). I wonder what my taste in books says about me...