Monday, September 17, 2007

Books

"A room without books is like a body without a soul"-Cicero With the exception of bathrooms, every room in my house has books. I LOVE books. If I had to purchase every book I devoured, I don't even want to think about what my house would look like. My blogger friend Jojo just posted about books and writing and the blend of the two. It made me think about my love of books and when that passion started. I don't remember learning to read, but I do remember being praised for being an adept reader in the first grade. I know that at that time I wasn't sold on reading. I distinctly recall being sent home with a book full of stories and at the time I knew that this was special. These were the days when homework was NOT given in the first grade and this book was harder than anything we read in class. I was supposed to read the whole book which was comprised of different stories and when I was done bring the book back. What? Read during my play time? I don't think so. I liked being read to. The Old Hag's Long Leather Bag was my Favorite. So, I kept the book for awhile, read the first and last stories, looked through the rest and gave the book back to the teacher. It hadn't occured to me that she might ask me questions about the stories. Yikes. The first thing she asked me was whether or not I had read the whole book. A clear choice was before me. Tell the truth, and risk being sent home with the book again, or lie. I lied and hoped I wouldn't get caught. See, it still weighs on me that I made a poor choice. She opened the book, picked the first story and asked me what it was about. Whew. I'd read that one. She flipped to the last story. I had read this one too. Check. Then she flipped to the middle. Uh oh. So I made something up. And she bought it. And that was the first time that I realized that teachers didn't know everything. Powerful knowledge for a 6 or 7 year old. I still didn't love to read, but I did love being able to read better than everyone else. By second grade I knew I was a top reader, by fourth grade I remember enjoying silent reading time, and by fifth grade I was hooked. I loved reading. All the time. I'd ride my bike to the public library and snatch just about anything off the shelves. Most of it was junk. I distinctly remember reading these "Sweet Valley High" books about identical twin girls who had very different personalities. I'm not proud of the fact that I was good at picking out junk even then, but I have to thank the author for the part her books played in making reading a passion. I remember my summers of reading the best. I couldn't wait for time during the day in which I could "hide" and read. On my bed, outside in the sun, in my tent on vacation........it was all the same. When I could crack open a book I could escape my world and enter another. Seconds, minutes, hours would pass and I wouldn't notice. When I'd have to stop reading I was thinking about when I could steal more time to finish. Books truely got me through my adolescence. I'll be forever thankful to those that write......that have provided me with words to ponder or just enjoy. Maybe I'll try to be one of those writers I admire someday. For today, I'll settle for my little blog.....and enjoy getting inspiration from others.

10 comments:

Debra said...

I read those Sweet Valley High books too! LOL My other favorites were Nancy Drew and Little House on the Prairie. I loved reading as a little girl. Not so much in my teenage years. Now I devour books.

Are your girls developing the same love of books that you have? That is so wonderful that you have so many books in your home. We do too. When I was growing up, we NEVER did. I promised myself that when I had a family, we would have books all over my home.

What have you read lately?

Kristin said...

Here Here. Chris has a passion for books too. When we moved here we had 25 boxes of books, and at least half that many more now. Wish I could say I've read them all, but his books on government and philosophy haven't quite peeked my interest yet...

Heather said...

Nothing beats an awesome book. But I wouldn't really know, because I haven't read anything since my kids joined us. I know, it's terrible! But I get about 2 pages under me, and then I'm completely in a coma. Someday I know it will all come back to me. I love the part where you remembered loving being the best reader. I can totally relate. When we had to read aloud in the class, I could hardly wait for my turn to show everybody my awesome skills!

The Pruetz Family said...

Oooh...I just love to read. Show me a good book and I'll show you three neglected children. I just get ensconced and read anywhere and any time I get the chance.

Check out half.com for good book deals. On more than one ocassion, I've found used books for a penny!

AZ said...

I feel exactly the same way as Jojo...there are not enough hours in a day (or days in a lifetime) to read all the books I want to read. There's even less time now! Currently I'm reading two books at the same time: Will Write For Food and The Revolution Will Not Be Microwaved. Both are very interesting. If I could only give up the need for sleep I'd be able to read more!!LOL!

Rosie Yanosko said...

Great entry, Angie :) I wish I read more, but unfortunately sewing has replaced reading for me :( I recently bought a stack of books, so we'll see.

Don't you just love the *experience* of reading? The sound of the pages turning, the scent of the book, etc. Reading just makes me happy.

Oh, and another great book quote: "When I get a little money I buy books. If any is left over I buy food and clothes." Okay, so that's not an exact quote, but you get the idea :)

Jeremiah R. Jones said...

Angie, am I the only guy that ever comments on your blog?

You should do Jeff a favor and give your bathroom a soul... I mean, put some books in there. It's been the subject of many a joke, but sometimes potty-time reading can be a great time for guys to improve their literacy.

angie said...

Sadly, Jeremiah, you are the only guy that comments these days. I used to have a few others, but I don't think I talk about poo enough to keep their interest......now, this is not a slam on men.....just a generalization I've made about the few who used to comment. ha ha.

Casey's trio said...

I am reading a great book right now...one that I am already looking forward to diving back into tonight after the girls go to bed. I LOVE getting sucked into a great story:)

familyof6 said...

I love to read too and always have. I was the good reader in school and like Heather said I couldn't wait until it was my turn to read out loud in class. We have so many books it's not even funny and I go to the library all the time too. Brianna and I love to go to the library. I could get lost in a book store or a library for days! When I need a Mommy break Chet always says "why don't you go to the book store!"