Reading

a-to-z HEADER [2017] - april

I have had a blessed life in many respects.  Not because my parents were infallible or I, Pollyanna, rather because I benefitted from the value my parents placed on ‘a good education’.  My single biggest gratitude is the education I received.  Of course a good education starts and ends with books.

My love of reading is shared by my brother who was nurtured in bookish ways alongside myself. He was into Zane Grey and Andy Capp while I was engrossed in girly equivalents which included the St Trinian’s Girls’ School capers which were later made into black and white films that were screened on Saturday nights at boarding school.  We both loved Enid Blyton and the colourful characters that filled the pages of her books.  Imagine allowing a child to read a book with characters such as golliwogs who were innocent characters in an innocent series of books of that time.

Reading Collage

Working my way through the April A-Z Challenge I am writing posts about the values that are the framework on which I hang much of my life.   In writing these posts I realise how many values instilled in childhood still frame my decisions.  My parents taught me the value of of so many things and reading remains one of my favourite pastimes.

I was an awkward child, socially inept and preferred to watch rather than participate, still do.  There was never a time I wasn’t tumbling into books to escape the confusion of how I experienced the world.  A good book was preferable to the company of other children.  I have grown into my introversion and can hold my own in public.  However, I still find the escape into a good book the best way to recharge as I immerse myself into the stories of others.

bookish-problem-36-hoping-for-that-dream-job-that-allows-you-to-drink-coffee-and-read-good-books-all-day-c59a7

Reading introduced me to new words so the link between building vocabulary and pleasure were instilled at an early age, naturally spelling became a favourite part of English studies.  Each year a classic work was selected as part of the English curriculum but by the time the first term started I had read the work and was fully versed in its contents.  It made understanding the details and bits the teachers wanted us to focus on so much easier to grasp.  I think reading from an early age also contributed to greater linguistic abilities as I grew up and now I enjoy being a competent oral communicator as well as having reasonable writing skills (I think).

As we read we recognise ourselves in the lives of others, making us feel part of the shared story of humanity.   I can time-travel, into the past and be jettisoned into the next century.  The people living between the covers of a book, the good, bad, ugly, charming, wealthy, criminal, beautiful, compassionate, and difficult are exciting and exhilarating and frightening and inspiring.  When I read, I rub shoulders with people I don’t and wouldn’t encounter in real life.  Their page-presence intrigues me.  Reading quenches my need for answers and ignites my curiosity about things I never knew existed.

Like movies, I prefer to have the opinions and recommendations of others before I commit my precious time to a film or book.  So, read anything worth recommending lately?

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29 thoughts on “Reading

  1. I spent so much of my childhood reading, despite my mother encouraging (and then demanding) that I get outside. We bought a furnished cottage when I was seven that had shelves and shelves of dog-eared mystery and crime paperbacks, which I read through one entire summer. I don’t think there’s a better pastime than reading, although my world has expanded since childhood, obviously. This is a really great post. Thank you.

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  2. I just finished Mark Lewishon’s “Tune In,” which is volume one of what will be a three-volumed biography on the Beatles. It is exhaustive. Carefully researched and footnoted, he leaves no stone unturned. Fascinating reading and I highly recommend. I can’t wait for him to finish the second volume. – Marty

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  3. This post, again, apart from the last paragraph as I don’t watch movies much at all, might have been written by me. I think I may have gone crazy many times if not for the escape I find in books. I usually read about 3 a week nowadays, when I have more time than I used to.
    I am so glad that my parents loved reading & passed that love onto at least 2 of their 5 children – me and my elder brother.
    Enid Blyton was, indeed, the JK Rowling of our time!

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    • Edit Blyton sometimes gets a bad rap in today’s reading and literary circles but I think she was the JKRowlings of the 1960s so Iapplaud her for hooking me in to what has become a lifelong love affair with the written word whether on blogs or in books. Thank you for visiting and take care as we near the end of our challenge. :)Linda

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  4. Linda, we appear to be of the same mind today 🙂 I also posted on reading, it’s something I do daily and I could completely relate to your words about what books mean to you. I’ll pretty much read anything that’s fiction, I use Goodreads now to keep track of what I’ve read or want to read next. Always happy to swap some fiction suggestions – do you have a genre you prefer?

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    • I will read just about anything apart from science fiction. At any one time I will have at least three self help books on the go and a novel. The self-help books at the moment are Daring Greatly (Brene Brown); Never Unfriended (Lisa-Jo Baker); Get Out of Your Mind and Into Your Life (Spencer Smith); Creative Journal Writing (Stephanie Dowrick); Hold Me Tight (Sue Johnson). Now I’m embarrassed because that is more than three and there are others. I like having something to pick up regardless of my frame of mind. I love historical novels but do read a lot of straight fiction too. Am bingeing on Di Morressey and Nora Roberts at the moment but have Pearl S Buck’s book Imperial Woman recently loaded onto Kindle. Study gets in the way of reading although I have upped my reading challenge this year.

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      • Wow, you are an avid reader! That’s fantastic, and certainly nothing to be embarrassed about. I read a lot of historical fiction as well so I’ll have a look at my list and see what I may have of interest to you 🙂

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          • Just been looking at my book shelves and there’s a few individual books and series that stand out to me. I loved The Pillars of The Earth by Ken Follett (first of three in a series) it’s one of my all time favourites, I recommend it to anyone who’ll listen to me! Also I’m not sure if you like history that stretches back to early mankind but The Clan of the Cave Bear by Jean M Auel is wonderful, it’s the first book out of six in her Earth’s Children series. As a stand alone, I like the mystery in The Lake House by Kate Morton. She has a few great novels but that’s my first choice. The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons. The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova. Just to name a few 🙂

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    • I will have to potter over and read your posts Julie. I am always on the look out for books others have recommended. I have a Goodreads account that I log them into rather than the scraps of paper Iused to write on and then lose. Thank you for the visiting, I’ll be over shortly. Take care 🙂 Linda

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  5. I love escaping into a good book, and often did so as a child as well. I would hide away with my books in strange places like perched in a tree. I could hear the other kids as a background noise but enjoyed being lost in my book. Great post.

    Stopping by from A to Z: R for Race
    Shari

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    • When we read as children we tend to carry it through to our adult years and what a blessing it is. To be lost in a book is truly one of my best ways to unwind. Thank you for the visit. I am behind on my visits and hoping to catch up as we have a few days away free camping in the bush. Take care :)Linda

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    • Books are such a perfect place for us introverts to hide in. I haven’t heard of Yuval Noah Harari and maybe need to put him/her on my list on Good Reads. Thanks for visiting and commenting. Hope your week is going well. Take care :)Linda

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