Saturday, January 1, 2011

Books and Memories

When I was a child—odd child that I was—my favorite Christmas presents were books. My favorite activity during cold winter days was to curl up in front of the fireplace and read.

My parents were readers. My mother had a bookcase built into one wall of the living room and filled it with novels. Several books would be placed artfully on tables while others were tossed in a chair where they were being read.

I love the feel of books, the pages, the covers, everything. One of my favorite activities both as a child and as an adult has been to go into a bookstore and browse, just enjoying all those books in one place and hoping to find one by a favorite author, a book I hadn’t read before. In on-line bookstores, I love to follow the “because-you-have-ordered-this-book-you-may-enjoy-this-one” links.

People are surprised how much I know about history and geography and how big my vocabulary is. I take no credit for that. I learned it by reading. I love historicals because where else can you enjoy a story and learn neat stuff? In college I had a double major of English and Spanish because I thought, “How cool is it to be able to read and get college credit for it?” So I did that, in two languages.

Reading has truly been much of the center of and a constant in my life. I imagine, if you’re here and reading this, it has been for you as well. What wonderful memories do you have about reading?


Sandy Cody said...

My favorite memories of reading are the friends I've made through books: Jane Eyre, Heidi, the March sisters, Darby & Jane, that rascal Tom Sawyer and so many more. One of the pleasures I get when I go to the library now is visiting my own books on the shelf. How vain is that!

Anonymous said...

I loved your entry. I felt like I was reading a page for my own diary.

Thank you for stirring up many beautiful memories.

Beate Boeker said...

I feel that reading is like a drug without negative side effects. It allows you to slip away and get some much needed breathing room before returning to reality. I still remember that feeling from my teenage years. For me, a book is a door to escape!

Beate Boeker said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jane Myers Perrine said...

Sandy--those are some of my friends as well!

Anonymous, thanks for your kind comments.

Beate, how right you are! Books do allow us to float away from our realities so we can face them better later.

Christine Bush said...

Books are STILL my very favorite gift! Thanks for the fun post.

Kaye Calkins said...

I loved your entry. It was like my childhood. Everyone in my family read voraciously. Only we went to the library instead of the bookstore. I too love historicals, the language, dress, customs. They all fascinate me. Georgette Heyer has been one of my favorites for years.