Saturday, 10 December 2016

For the Love of Books

I love books. And I have loved books as long as I can remember.
     I can't remember having to learn to read. I just know that as soon as I could read, I would read anything and everything I could get my hands on. I remember reading Jane Eyre when I was very young, because it was the only book in the house which I hadn't read, I remember it had very small print, and how sad I was when Jane's friend died.
     I read quickly and I remember what I have read. Although for some reason spellings have never stuck with me.
     Because there were never enough books around as I was growing up, I would re-read favourites, sometimes many times over - The Hobbit was one of those, although The Lord of the Rings never grabbed me in the same way - and they were never boring.
     We had a Mobile Library visited the village, fortnightly on a Tuesday. It parked near the War Memorial at the bottom of Chalk Lane, and there was always a crowd of people waiting to return books and pick up more. We were allowed six books at a time and I always picked my full allocation.
     For some reason my dad wouldn't let me and my sister have any Dr Seuss books, so these were a guilty pleasure to be devoured while in the Mobile Library.
     I discovered my first spell book in that Mobile Library, a chunky book called 'Black and White Magic' which fascinated me with its ancient spells and invocations. One I remember was an extract of an ancient Babylonian call to the God of the Winds:
Come hither, my Lord,
Let down your locks, so long and flowing.

     My fascination with books continues to this day - and luckily Graham enjoys books too, as our home is packed with them. There are books in every room.
     My main problem is often finding the book I am looking for, as I tend to carry them around with me and put them down in odd places.
     Incidentally the same applies to pens and specs, and has led to me having pens and pairs of glasses dotted around the house, so that there are always some to hand. Occasionally these form 'drifts', accumulating in certain places. Graham counted five pairs of specs (of different strengths, I hasten to add in my own defence) on the table where I had a jigsaw puzzle under construction.
     I go through phases of what I am reading and I always have a pile of books on the go at the same time, a variety and cross-section of many interests, to pick up as the mood takes me. Sometimes it is fiction which could be 'chick lit' (I love a romance with a happy ending), magical research, reference, biography, historical, sf, fantasy or even comedy.
     Sometimes I like to just dip into a book and read from wherever it has randomly opened. At other times I will read straight through from cover to cover. Graham laughs at me because with fiction I often read the end of the book first, to make sure that I want to read the book which leads to that particular ending.
     My argument is: do I want to invest in getting to know and love a character, only to discover they end up being miserable or die at the end? Mind you that doesn't always hold true.
     One of my favourite recent fiction books is 'Me Before You' by Jojo Moyes, and that is a real tear jerker.


  1. Hi Christine. I think it's wonderful that books meant so much to you when you were a child. I try and ignite that same passion for books on my children. Two of the five in my family only read for information but the remaining three of us read enough to make up for the other two!

    I find it particularly interesting that you read the last pages for the ending. If I'm reading a favorite author, I won't even read the inside cover because sometimes they tell too much and I feel like it ruins it.

    P.S. I saw Me Before You at the movies and I cried like a baby! I can only imagine how great the book is.

    1. Thank you for your comment, for a start it is lovely to know that someone actually reads what I write, but particularly that you enjoyed it. I know I am wierd about reading the endings,although not of all books - and frankly with some books reading the ending isn't that helpful (I love sf and fantasy - ooo if you haven't read it try The Night Circus, that is a fab magical book) lol sorry I can ramble on for England:)

  2. Hi Christine! I love books as well. My husband and I have bookshelves galore in our house. It was our dream to have a library. You are not alone in crying at the end of a story. I did that at the end of The Lovely Bones and Duma Key. Great writing will do that! It was a pleasure reading your blog.

    1. Hiya and thank you for your comment. It means a lot to me that someone actually does read what I write and that you enjoyed it too. I would love to have my own library, that has long been a fantasy. But I think the library would have to be bigger than our home to include all the features I would like - oooo and the vast number of books I would love to accumulate to fill it :)