Jan. 16th, 2010

Reading

Jan. 16th, 2010 02:42 pm
jesso: (PD - Books)
So [livejournal.com profile] daisho posted this question in his LJ, from someone else who posted it in hers, and I like it enough that I'm posting it here:

When did you start reading? What were your favourite books when you were a kid?

I don't remember exactly when I learned to read, but my mom has a letter I wrote to Santa when I was 3 1/2 years old, so I was reading and writing at least by then. I remember my favorite book when I was really little was "Hop On Pop", because I loved the part with all the kids jumping on their dad. I thought it was hilarious and always told my dad we should do that. I also loved "Oh Say Can You Say", which was full of tongue twisters. I loved having my dad read this one so I could laugh at him when he messed up. Looking back, I'm pretty sure he probably could have read the book perfectly after so many readings, but he knew it entertained me so he messed up on purpose.

When I was a little older, I loved the Mandie series. They were simple mysteries, set in the 1890s, and sold pretty much exclusively in Christian book stores. I seem to remember getting the next set of 5 books every year for Christmas, which says a lot about how fast this lady was churning out these books. I loved them, though, and reread them countless times. I still have them on my bookshelf, and someday I'm going to buy the last few so I can have the full set.

I remember going to the library all the time, and getting as many books as I could carry. Eventually I got smart and started taking big brown paper grocery bags with me, and filling them up. Unfortunately, once they were full, they were really hard for little me to carry. I would usually finish one before getting home, or at least make a significant dent in one once I got into chapter books. I remember sitting in the van in the garage, not wanting to stop reading for long enough to get out and walk into the house. My mom would have to come back out later and pull me away from the book and come inside. Then I would retreat to my room and read and read and read.

When they built the new library that was closer to my house, the children's fiction section was right next to the beginning of the grown-up fiction section. I was close to 10 by then, I think, and I was bored with the kid books. I finished the whole YA section, which at that time was two spinning racks of Babysitter's Club book, Sweet Valley Twins books, and Choose Your Own Adventure books. So... I wandered into the adult fiction. Looking back, I'm kind of shocked at some of the things I read, but at the time I had no idea of the more "mature" stuff. I mean, I wasn't reading smutty romances or anything, but pretty much every novel had at least one "mature" scene. I usually skipped over them, because I didn't understand them, and I just wanted to get back to the story. I thought those bits were very weird, especially since they never really got explicit so they were vague.

But I liked the stories, and I really liked that these books were thicker so they lasted longer. I mostly read the books by "A" authors, since I felt like I shouldn't be in the adult section. I felt shy going over there, because when an adult saw me, they definitely noticed me, and I was so painfully shy then that I hated that. So I stuck to the "A" authors, where I could make a quick escape to the kid section if I needed to. Watership Down (Richard Adams), Superstition (David Ambrose), MEG (Steve Alten), and even Digital Fortress (Dan Brown). Eventually, as I got both more confident and a little older (so I looked less out of place), I ventured further and further down the row of books. The library had all of the adult fiction along the outer wall, so it wrapped around the entire non-fiction section, but I always went to the kids' section and started with A and walked to whatever letter I was exploring that day. I felt like I was hidden that way, I guess.

I really wish I'd had access to something like Goodreads when I was a kid, so I could keep track of how much I was reading. I read a LOT. You know how parents always tell stories about their kids and the wacky things they do? My parents have very few about me, because I was definitely the good one, and spent all of my time reading instead of getting into trouble like my brother.

Moral of the story: Books are delicious.

And now I need to go get things done. I've spent way too long writing this!

Reading

Jan. 16th, 2010 02:42 pm
jesso: (PD - Books)
So [livejournal.com profile] daisho posted this question in his LJ, from someone else who posted it in hers, and I like it enough that I'm posting it here:

When did you start reading? What were your favourite books when you were a kid?

I don't remember exactly when I learned to read, but my mom has a letter I wrote to Santa when I was 3 1/2 years old, so I was reading and writing at least by then. I remember my favorite book when I was really little was "Hop On Pop", because I loved the part with all the kids jumping on their dad. I thought it was hilarious and always told my dad we should do that. I also loved "Oh Say Can You Say", which was full of tongue twisters. I loved having my dad read this one so I could laugh at him when he messed up. Looking back, I'm pretty sure he probably could have read the book perfectly after so many readings, but he knew it entertained me so he messed up on purpose.

When I was a little older, I loved the Mandie series. They were simple mysteries, set in the 1890s, and sold pretty much exclusively in Christian book stores. I seem to remember getting the next set of 5 books every year for Christmas, which says a lot about how fast this lady was churning out these books. I loved them, though, and reread them countless times. I still have them on my bookshelf, and someday I'm going to buy the last few so I can have the full set.

I remember going to the library all the time, and getting as many books as I could carry. Eventually I got smart and started taking big brown paper grocery bags with me, and filling them up. Unfortunately, once they were full, they were really hard for little me to carry. I would usually finish one before getting home, or at least make a significant dent in one once I got into chapter books. I remember sitting in the van in the garage, not wanting to stop reading for long enough to get out and walk into the house. My mom would have to come back out later and pull me away from the book and come inside. Then I would retreat to my room and read and read and read.

When they built the new library that was closer to my house, the children's fiction section was right next to the beginning of the grown-up fiction section. I was close to 10 by then, I think, and I was bored with the kid books. I finished the whole YA section, which at that time was two spinning racks of Babysitter's Club book, Sweet Valley Twins books, and Choose Your Own Adventure books. So... I wandered into the adult fiction. Looking back, I'm kind of shocked at some of the things I read, but at the time I had no idea of the more "mature" stuff. I mean, I wasn't reading smutty romances or anything, but pretty much every novel had at least one "mature" scene. I usually skipped over them, because I didn't understand them, and I just wanted to get back to the story. I thought those bits were very weird, especially since they never really got explicit so they were vague.

But I liked the stories, and I really liked that these books were thicker so they lasted longer. I mostly read the books by "A" authors, since I felt like I shouldn't be in the adult section. I felt shy going over there, because when an adult saw me, they definitely noticed me, and I was so painfully shy then that I hated that. So I stuck to the "A" authors, where I could make a quick escape to the kid section if I needed to. Watership Down (Richard Adams), Superstition (David Ambrose), MEG (Steve Alten), and even Digital Fortress (Dan Brown). Eventually, as I got both more confident and a little older (so I looked less out of place), I ventured further and further down the row of books. The library had all of the adult fiction along the outer wall, so it wrapped around the entire non-fiction section, but I always went to the kids' section and started with A and walked to whatever letter I was exploring that day. I felt like I was hidden that way, I guess.

I really wish I'd had access to something like Goodreads when I was a kid, so I could keep track of how much I was reading. I read a LOT. You know how parents always tell stories about their kids and the wacky things they do? My parents have very few about me, because I was definitely the good one, and spent all of my time reading instead of getting into trouble like my brother.

Moral of the story: Books are delicious.

And now I need to go get things done. I've spent way too long writing this!

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