I am not a big fan on memes (anymore), but this actually sounds like an interesting concept. Everybody starts with the same book and then you make connections to six more books. And as everybody does their own thing, you end up with wildly different books.

So, welcome to my #6Degrees. Please have a look at the link to see how the meme works or how to join. The post for December 2020 is here.

The book that starts the December Meme is Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume. Which I have not read. I have heard the title, but that is pretty much it. So I went to Goodreads to read the blurb and look for inspiration for my first connection—similar books that Goodreads members also liked. And lo-and-behold, on that list was a book that I have read!

Holes (Holes, #1)
by Louis Sachar

Rating: 4 out of 5.

A fairly slim book for Young Adults. Good fun for grown-ups as well! I liked it, when I read it back in 2010 and enjoyed the movie with Sigourney Weaver as warden as well. The book won the Newbery Medal in 1999. Another book that won this price in 1972 and that I have read many, many times as a young adult and re-read in 2016 is:

Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH (Rats of NIMH, #1)
by Robert C. O’Brien

Rating: 5 out of 5.

During my re-read as an adult, the beginning was a little boring and the very traditional gender roles of the mice annoyed me a bit at first. But once Mrs. Frisby met the rats and they told her their story, the book picked up a lot. I had forgotten a lot of the storyline. Some parts were pretty exciting, others emotional. There was drama, angst, a good plot, suspense… A nice rollercoaster.

In the end I liked the story so much that I wouldn’t mind reading a sequel, to find out how the story continues for our heroes.

I loved this book so much as a young teen, I read it over and over and over. This is probably the book that started me off on my lifelong love of fantasy, together with Watership Down

Watership Down (Watership Down, #1)
by Richard Adams

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Another one that I read many times as a teenager, pretty much once a year for a long time. It‘s been so long, I don‘t recall exactly what I loved so much about this book, perhaps it is time for a reread. It might have been the imaginative world building and the strength of the character developments…

Talking about classic fantasy for children and young adult readers can only lead to one book for me and that is The Hobbit.

The Hobbit
by J.R.R. Tolkien

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I read The Hobbit for the first time as a teenager, over 30 years ago. When I finally read LOTR, after the first movie came out, I realised how little I remembered off The Hobbit. So I decided to read it again. I can not imagine that I liked it much as a young teenager. I don‘t remember, what I thought about it. Although it is intended to be a children’s book, I think it would be tough going for younger readers. I did like it now and it makes me want to read LOTR all over again… No, I am not going to list LOTR next or talk to you about another wizard aimed at young readers, named Harry… maybe another dragon?

Eragon (The Inheritance Cycle, #1)
by Christopher Paolini

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This is classed as Young Adult, probably because Paolini was 15, when he wrote it. I don’t see another reason for it – this is as adult as many other Fantasy novels I have read. Great book! Read it in two days, good fun. A bit heavy on Tolkien, even in some of the names, but if you don’t let that bother you, it is worth the read. Well developed characters, interesting story line, hard to believe that this was written by a teenager.

I am currently listening to the 33-hours long audiobook of his first adult Science Fiction novel. I am about halfway—I am the world’s slowest audiobook listener—and it‘s good so far. Not outstanding, there were no great surprises yet, but it‘s nice entertainment.

To Sleep in a Sea of Stars (Audible Audio)
by Christopher Paolini

I will probably end up with three stars. But we‘ll see, I have about 16 hours to go…

So much for my Six Degrees of Separation. From Margaret talking to God to xenobiologist Kira Navárez, finding an alien relic beneath the surface of the world, that transforms her forever and will alter the course of human history.