Actress Mary-Louise Parker's favorite books.
I am such a book geek. I have been since I was young. My mother says that I used to stay inside and read in the dark. She would come into my room and open the curtains. I lived a lot in my head then.

Everyone in my family loves words. My father taught me to appreciate books. He still finishes three a week and retains everything. My niece and I have sat around on a Saturday night reading the dictionary and trying to find the perfect use of a gerund. We once spent a weekend on the word codify. We're always writing some manifesto or other and asking the other to read it.

I hope my child enjoys reading, because I think books are important in the development of a person. They teach you on some small level a sense of empathy. They help you hear a different voice in your head; they reveal a different sensibility. They get you thinking about unfamiliar topics, in ways and rhythms that you wouldn't normally encounter. A good book—it opens you up.

Mary-Louise Parker appeared in the play Reckless at Second Stage Theatre in New York City.

What's on Mary-Louise Parker's Bookshelf? Read more!