About a Book Addiction

I don't rememember learning to read...can't imagine my life without books. And I'm definititely not monogomous when it comes to reading. Usually I'm juggling several books at the same time, so it is a good thing that my tastes span nearly every genre. Still, I've always been extremely particular about how I read....

My bath book is usually contemplative fare...some non-fiction book that I read in hopes that some personal enlightenment will sink in while I soak. The thought of having an epiphany when I am nude and neck-deep in scented bubbles certainly appeals...but, alas, I'm still waiting. Most important batth book qualification? The book cannot be a real page-turner that will leave me shriveled like a raisin in a tub of cold water because I can't put it down. And while we are here in the bathroom, I want to be clear on one thing...I do NOT read on the john. Such a guy thing.

The main characteristic of my purse book is that I not be ashamed to read it in public. This is the go-to book that I read in waiting rooms, lines and whenever I have a spare moment. No bodice-rippers or self-help books in this category...classic lit or anything by Stephen King works best. The book has to be something I've already read and loved, so that if I am distaracted by whatever I am ACTUALLY supposed to be doing, I won't loose momentum. After all, I know the plot already and re-read them for the nuances. (If "the devil is in the details" then Mr. King is Satan himself...I learn something about writing every time I read his books.) Plus I am still single and you can't beat the cred you get with guys by reading The Gunslinger or Desperation in public. Not so much with Bridges of Madison County, capiche?

Read-Aloud Books
I've been reading to my daughter Madison since she was in utero. We covered all my favorite classics while I was pregnant, like Wuthering Heights and 1984...as well as the ones I always meant to read, but never got around to, like the Lord of the Rings trilogy. 18 works of literature in all. As an unwed mother-to-be, I was sure to include The Scarlet Letter and Madame Bovary; I like to think that these early bonding sessions helped develop her vocabulary...and her sense of irony. Of course, once she was actually born, I tried to switch to more age-appropriate books, but she never lost a her taste for big words and complicated plots. I read all seven Harry Potter books out loud to her and the coolest thing about that was they brought us right through her childhood. She's almost 14 now and a fan of the Twilight series (HATES the movie!). The Twilight books are a perfect example of a series not appropriate for me to read to her...too much romance and mushy stuff. Still, we keep the tradition alive; we're about to embark on the Alice in Wonderland books in honor of the Tim Burton movie coming out.

Bed Books
I can read just about anywhere, but my favorite place to read is in bed. I'm actually incapable of falling asleep without reading first; sometimes I fall asleep with book in hand, other times I stay awake all night. Being super-comfortable and melting into a book is (unfortunately) my number one priority when I go to bed. Half of my ginormous King size bed is covered with unread and half-read books in every genre and my entire bedside table is absolutely stacked. Historical fiction, sci-fi, romance, chick-lit, cyber punk, biography, romance, classics, fantasy...well, I could go on, but I'm sure you get the idea. I guess my piont is that while I might be single, I definitely don't sleep alone...I've got dozens of amazing authors just waiting for me to take a crack at them.

So what am I reading now? You'll never believe it, but I'm working my way through Amy Vanderbilt's Everyday Etiquette, circa 1962. Actually, its a darned good read...equal parts educational and amusing. I was going to put it up for sale in Comfuzzled, then started reading it and got hooked.

But that's a whole other blog...


Judy August 24, 2009 at 3:59 PM  

Neat way to look at the different ways we interact with our books. My youngest daugher used to get furious with her older sister for borrowing her books and then reading it in the tub. She could tell by the wrinkle in the pages. Then to add insult to injury, big sister left the book opened and upside down on the counter and stressed its binding. Tsk tsk...I say a book is meant to be loved and should look like it was!

velvetwoods August 25, 2009 at 4:51 AM  

Great post,I like to read a few books all at once if I haven't got anything really engrossing to read.Yes bath books are good but I usually like to read a story while having bath..I like personal enlightenment books before bed so I might wake up as the Buddha hahaha.I don't like to show my self help books in public either,why is that...Everyone else needs help.
I'll be doing a blog post on books soon.I started it last week.
Thanks for sharing yours.
PS I got hooked on the twilight books and can't wait for the second movie to come out.I usually don't do mushy musy.

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No one puts bric-a-brac to any very practical purpose. There's some human instinct which makes a man treasure what he is not to make any use of, because everybody does not possess it.
- interview, "Mark Twain in London," London Chronicle, 3 June 1899