I am not usually big on anthologies. I'm a cover to cover reader and I don't like to skip stories (even if I don't enjoy them). I find that with most anthologies there are stories/essays I love, a few that are ok, and ones I just don't enjoy.
This was the case with the 'The Book That Made Me'. When I started reading I noticed that I only recognized two authors, Markus Zusak author of 'The Book Thief' and Jaclyn Moriarty (whose sister Liane wrote 'Big Little Lies'). After a couple of essays, I realized why. All the authors are either Australian or New Zealanders. Because of this I didn't recognize most of the books that inspired the authors. This left me disconnected from many of the stories.
There were several stories that were inspirational and that I really did love. For example, Cathy Cassidy's story about her love of 'Watership Down'. Will Kostakis' story of how not liking 'Hatchet' inspired him to become a writer. Queenie Chan's discovery of the Manga 'Black Jack', and Jacklyn Moriarty's discovery of the Roald Dahl book 'The Magic Finger'.
There were a few stories that seemed a little boastful, a few that were a little too simple, and two or three that were entirely off topic.
I did love that photo's of the authors when they were young. The sketches in the book seemed out-of-place and like they were inserted into stories where a photo was not provided.
I loved the idea of 'The Book That Made Me'. I also loved that all the royalties will be donated to Australia's Indigenous Literary Fund. I also liked the index at the end. It lists all the books mentioned in the essays. 'The Book That Made Me' was a very unique and inspirational read and one I may refer to back to. I would like to see something similar geared to specified markets of readers such as the American market, Canadian market, British market etc