Are your book choices influenced by friends and family? Do their recommendations carry weight for you? Or do you choose your books solely by what you want to read?
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I consider myself lucky in a number of ways, but one of the very top reasons I am lucky? Almost my entire family enjoys reading. When I lived at home, there were plenty of afternoons when every single person in the house was reading a book. How magnificent is that? In fact, just this past Sunday, I was at my aunt’s house for Mother’s Day. My grandmother, mom, aunt, cousin, and I were all sitting on the sofa, visiting. My cousin Ella is 3 and is fascinated with books. She gave one to my mom to read and began “reading” her book. She then looked up at her mom and said, ” Mom. You ‘yead’ too.” Her mom picked up a book. She looked over at me and said, “Gigi, where you book? You ‘yead.'” Of course, I had a book in my bag and told her to go get it, so we all sat on the sofa ‘yeading’ away. It was absolutely fantastic. I am so glad she loves books at this early age.
I recently read an article in The New York Times that discussed reading habits, and it had the appalling fact that less than 1% of Americans read one book a year. ONE BOOK! (If I can find the link, I’ll provide it later.) I was always the kid going to the library with my mom, brother and sister, each of us leaving with a pile. This contributed to many late fees as sometimes those books changed hands and couldn’t be found when they were due. Whoops. And it’s not just my family. Most, if not all, of my friends like to read. We pass books back and forth and know each others’ tastes fairly well.
My brother, mom, and I share recommendations the most, and that is probably partially because of the amount of time we have to read. My mom is retired, my brother works odd hours, and as a teacher, I often have afternoons free. Of course, we don’t always agree on books. However, I passed The Book Thief on to them a few years back, and they loved it. My brother actually bought me The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, which I absolutely loved. It helps that we all read between genres and don’t stick to one particular type of book.
I know many out there have partners or friends who do not understand their reading habits. I really feel so badly for you because there is such joy in talking about and living with books. I have lost many books because I have passed them on and cannot recollect who has them. Overall, though, I am ok with that. I have bought several copies of The Book Thief for that very reason. I am pleased that there are people in my life with whom I can share such beauty.* *
**I am completely aware that this is the second cheesy post this week. It is the sheer exhaustion from grading 120 6-8 page research papers and calculating grades. The snarky, picky girl will hopefully be back once I can get my head on straight. 🙂