Friday, April 8, 2016

What Are You Reading?


I love to read. I do not remember not reading although I do remember learning to read in school. I suppose it might have been because my mother read to us too.

Both of my parents read a lot. As a result all of their children loved books. Reading was a relaxing activity on a hot summer afternoon. It was also a good reason to be alone for a little while which is good in a large family.

I will read almost anything. Books, magazines, even junk mail.

Over the years I have some favorites. I have favorite topics, favorite stories, and favorite authors.

Jane Eyre was a favorite book when I was in high school. I have not read it in years and have been thinking of doing it again soon.

Charles Dickens had some I liked and some I did not. I think The Pickwick Papers is my favorite.

Edgar Allen Poe was such a master. My mother was enthralled by his use of alliteration in The Raven. I enjoy his adeptness at building a story and keeping me on the edge of my seat the whole time.

I liked the book Silence of the Lambs. After I read it I took it to my mother and told her to read it. I explained to her that it was the first thing I had ever read that did not have a wasted word in the whole book.

My mother referred the series of Mrs Polifax books to me. They are about the most unlikely spy the CIA ever employed.

Piers Anthony is most known for his Xanth series. It is a fantasy series about the magical land of Xanth. As much as I like the Xanth books I like the Incarnations of Immortality better. It explains the various aspects of the immortals sucha as Death or Mother Nature. Then it deals with God and the Devil. Finally there is the one who is above even those two.

My son introduced me to The Wheel of Time Series. He had been raving about them for so long that I finally gave in. I am so glad I did.

The Wamphyri series is about vampires AND another dimension. I am afraid of vampires but this was a different kind of story. I felt perfectly comfortable with the subect even late at night. Some people will recognize the series as part of the Necroscope series.

As a child I read every Nancy Drew book I could get my hands on. I spent wonderful hours with her on her adventures.

I read every book about the Civil War that I see. I am only slightly less interested in the Revolutionary War. I cannot read about the more recent conflicts we have been involved with because they are just to close to deal with for me.

I have read all of Shakespeare's plays of course. My 2nd grade teacher told Mom I would like them when I was old enough to read them and she was right. I have to be honest though and say that I like his comedies the best.

I am the only person in my family who has not read The Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit. I have tried. I cannot get past the first chapter. 

Magazines are nice for passing the time. As a teenager I read all the magazines aimed at teens. I have read articles in most of the women's magazines. I used to like the okes in Playboy and Esquire. Mad Magazine is literary genius. Readers Digest has something for everyone.

Boy's Life is the official Boy Scouts magazine. My brothers were Boy Scouts so the magazine was always in the house. The articles were interesting and informative.

One article from Boys Life that sticks in my mind is the tale of the jungles in the sewers of New York. It tells of the abandoned animals that live in the sewers. Alligators grow to huge sizes because food is plentiful and predators are few. Over the years some experts deny that is true while others insist that it is. I do not know but the concept is fascinating.

My Weekly Reader came directly to the school. Each student paid a subscription fee and had their own copies. It covered current events. It had puzzles and games. There were history lessons. And it was so much fun.

On Fridays there would be a test in My Weekly Reader about what we had read during the week. I loved that test.

Biographies are a passion with me. I desire to know the reasons people do the things they do and why they are the way they are. To read about Thomas Jefferson for instance and gain understanding into his life lets me know why he believed in what he wrote in the Declaration of Independence.

From their biographies I learned that not only did Ulysses Grant and Robert E Lee have a lot in common but they had great admiration for each other. From biographies about Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis I found that there were many similarities in their lives as well.

In all those many reading materials I have traveled the universe. I have fallen in love. I have solved mysteries. I have laughed. I have cried. I have celebrated. I have mourned. I have gone back in time and forward in time.

If you need a cheap trip or a relaxing evening pick up something to read.

20 comments:

  1. What a wonderful post on the joys of reading, Emma. You have captured what it is like to become lost in reading. It leaves much to the imagination unlike visial forms of entertainment. My reading is less diverse than your own in that I have not read as many classics, but am always looking for recommendations from friends and others. Currently, I am reading mysteries and thrillers.

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    1. I love a good mystery. You might enjoy The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out The Window And Disappeared. It has mystery, intrigue, espionage, and humor.

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  2. I always have a book going, changing genres always. I like to have the librarians set me toward good ones, or pick up ones others have said they liked.I get them in groups of 2 or 3 just to have a new one on hand always.

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    1. Before I got my Kindle I kept a book in the car, one in e the bedroom, one in the living room, and before I retired one at work. I like to have reading material handy at all times.

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  3. Books and I are fast friends through the years. My favorite Dickens is Little Dorrit, and I'm going it through it again.

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    1. I can also read a book many times if I like it. I used to have a book named Uncle John's Shoes. I found it in the attic of a house we bought. It was light reading with a good moral. I must have read that book a hundred times.

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  4. Did you know that Jane Eyre was on the bedside table of Winston Churchill when he died? I remember little things like that!
    I also love to read. Don't leave a book lying around, I will pick it up and read it and totally ignore everything else!

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    1. I did not know that. What an interesting piece of trivia.

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  5. Gosh, I really enjoyed reading this post, Emma! I learned to read from comic books when I was little. My friends learned a lot earlier than I from excellent reading programs in our schools, but I needed the pictures and colors and exciting cartoon art to engage my whole attention. When I grew up, I bought lots of DC Comics for my little ones --and they drew their own wonderful stories. My oldest boy, 46 now, has made a good living as a writer and editor. Reading is a way of life here.

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    1. Oh how I loved comic books. I liked the Fantastic Four but was never too crazy about the X-Men. I also was not a big fan of Spiderman but I liked Superman and Batman. Wonder Woman was good and so was Captain America. I liked Archie, Little Lulu, and sometimes Richie Rich. I had to be in the mood for Casper. Ooooh. You have opened up a whole group of memories here.

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  6. I'll be back to this post again - as a matter of fact, I have my library's home page open in another tab, just to reserve one or two of your recommendations right away.
    These days I am reading Jane Gardam's The Stories. She is an author who has never, ever disappointed.

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    1. I welcome every visit. I shall look for your recommendation.

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  7. Reading may lead us to many adventurous journeys.
    And all brand new.

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  8. The nice thing is if you wish to return to a former journey you can do that too.

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  9. oh, I was like you too, was a fan of Nancy Drew series, and I also love Silence of the Lambs. Loved Robert Ludlum, JOhn Grisham, Michael Crichton, and more when I was younger, I still love them now, but these days, I read mostly technology/investment/travel articles.

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    1. I read more biographies than anything else now. But I still like to just pick up something, anything to read.

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  10. Thank you for that interesting post, Emma. I read for pleasure and as a job - ain't I lucky?

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    1. Are you kidding me? How did you get so lucky?

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