As I’ve already professed to the world that I consider myself a Nerd, it will come as no big shock to hear that I love to read. As a nerdy kid, my social skills were a little lax, so being with 3-dimensional people was sometimes awkward. Thus began my friendship with the local librarian. The Wagner Library was about 6 blocks from my house, and (back in the day when you could let a little girl roam about unsupervised) I went there almost every day.
5 was the number of books you were allowed to check out in one day, and 5 was the number of books I went home with most of the time. Several times a week I’d trot back for more. After exploring the library and reading different things, I determined that I liked non-fiction best, and after exhausting all the books that “interested” me, I set out to read the entire library. That proved to be a little ambitious (even for me), so I narrowed my scope down to Sections 920 through 998: Biographies and History. And I started reading them in order.
My love affair with reading continued through high school, and when it came time to declare a major, I stumbled on something in the curriculum guide that seemed too good to be true: A Liberal Arts degree, with concentrations in Literature and History. I studied Shakespeare, Moliere, and my favorite author– Emerson. My husband fell in love with me over Hawthorne’s Young Goodman Brown. (He’ll probably deny that, but I know the truth.) I delved into Russian and European history with zeal, and actually worked as a research assistant on a book called The Artist as Politician, relating the role of art in the politics of 19th century France.
Then something happened. I had kids. And the pursuits I loved so much before took a back burner to their pursuits, and I stopped reading. Well, I didn’t stop altogether. I just stopped reading books with big words and no illustrations. I read what they read. We started with Dr. Seuss, and worked our way up through J.K. Rowling and Lemony Snicket. One summer I read the entire Lloyd Alexander series, The Chronicles of Prydain (which I highly recommend!) with The Middle Child. Reading and sharing it with him gave me great joy, and I vowed I’d start reading again, but it was a promise I didn’t keep.
Then a funny thing happened. The kids grew up. And I rediscovered my favorite pastime! Now I have 20 years of catching up to do, so I’m taking it kind of slow, but I’m proud to say that in the last few months I’ve finished TWO BOOKS! Actual hardbacks, with no pictures! The kids had to fend for themselves a couple of times, and I left clothes in the dryer overnight. But I finished! (Sounds like a small feat to those without kids and a house and a dog and a mother-in-law, but it’s a huge accomplishment for me!) So What I Read will become a part of The Lucky Mom’s new world, and I’ll be accountable to my followers to keep it interesting!
(In case you’re interested, the two books, Jane Boleyn: The True Story of the Infamous Lady Rochford by Julia Fox and Tina Fey’s new memoir Bossypants, will be reviewed under the tab at the right, What I Read.
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*“It is meat and drink to me…” — William Shakespeare, As You Like It (1616)