My mom swears I started reading when I was 3 years old. Of course I don’t believe her, but she promises I started reading aloud in the backseat of the car while she and my aunt Sheryl sat in the front. They both turned around and gasped. What a little prodigy! Ok, to be fair, I’m sure I had just memorized the words but regardless, my love for books started young.
When I was a wee little kid, my aunt Kathi would take me to Borders, the giant bookstore, and I’d spend an entire afternoon perusing the shelves, picking out a stack of books, and often reading a full book before we had even purchased it. It was my all-time favorite thing to do.
My sisters used to make fun of me because I always had my head in a book. The thing was, I didn’t have many friends and our home life was somewhat unstable, so books were the perfect way to escape and be someone else living in some other land for a few hours until dinnertime. I don’t know why I remember this but I can distinctly recall a time when my sister was making fun of me for never having been to a party. She asked, “so if you actually get invited to a party, what are you gonna do? Like bring a book and read in the corner?” and she busted up laughing as if that was hysterical.
**I’d like to add that YES, I did indeed get invited to many parties in the coming years and I never once brought a book.
I’m now 30 years old, and bookstores are still my happy place. Well, one of my many happy places. Nowadays, I opt for smaller, used book stores, but I still love to smell all the books and grab at random from the shelves to see what I come across.
Up until recently, I was pretty terrified that bookstores would become completely obsolete in my lifetime. It was a legitimate fear. Then Amazon went ahead and opened a real life, brick and mortar book store in one of the malls here in San Diego… and it is A M A Z I N G. So no matter how technologically advanced we get, there will always be a need for that in-person book smelling and buying experience and that makes my heart all warm and fuzzy.
My ideal Sunday involves waking up a couple hours before Brittany, making myself a cup of coffee and then curling up on the couch under a blanket and reading until she wakes up. The house is perfectly still and quiet, so I like to open up the door to the patio so the sound of the birds chirping floats inside along with some fresh air. Other than running, it’s my favorite way to spend alone time. It’s the best.
I decided to share some of my all-time favorite books with you, but I have to admit, it’s really freaking hard to narrow it down. So, I went with a Top 10 of sorts. I’m sure I am leaving something out but all of these books have moved me in some way, whether through the prose or the characters, and I would love to re-read them at some point. I hope one of them resonates with you.
- The Unbearable Lightness of Being
- A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
- A Fine Balance
- The Nightingale
- Everything Beautiful Began After
- Let The Great World Spin
- The Bell Jar
- Mountains Beyond Mountains
- Fates and Furies