I still remember the first time it happened.
Many years ago, a friend recommended I read a book. She'd read it, her sister and mother had read it, and so she felt pretty confident about the novel's power over people. She warned that if I read it too, then I should be prepared: The book had made everyone a little paranoid about their personal security. She said she would crawl into bed at night (she lived alone, as did I at the time), then she'd have to get up and check and re-check her doors and windows.
The book was Patricia Cornwell's Postmortem (Kay Scarpetta Series).
And my friend was right! I did get up to check and double check my locks.
I keep thinking I should re-read that book now that I know more about writing to see how Ms. Cornwell created such an intense connection with her readership.
Hmm... Maybe I should do that this summer.
Has a novel ever influenced you? If so, in what way? What was the book?