Reading for pure enjoyment is an integral part of my life thanks to long-standing habits ingrained in me by my mom. During our elementary school years, she enrolled my brothers and me in the Edgar Allen White summer reading program at the Wichita public library. We had to read for an hour after lunch every day, and she would close the curtains in the picture window on the front porch so that our friends wouldn’t press their noses to the glass to find out where we were. It wasn’t a punishment for me; I loved choosing thick books from the shelves and losing myself in them. I remember the feel and smell of the pages. Is that weird?
Though I’ve “graduated” to a Kindle for much of my reading, I also have a stack of books next to the bed waiting to be read. The aroma is still the same. I read before I go to sleep every night, and I read one book at a time. I’m not a multi-tasker who can tolerate bookmarks poking up beyond the covers of several books. Also, I will gladly abandon a book that hasn’t caught my imagination within the first couple of chapters. There are just too many great books out there waiting to be discovered.
What are you reading now? I’m about 30 percent through a Ken Follett book at the moment. The jury is still out on this one. It is the first book of a trilogy and goal-oriented Marlene might feel compelled to read all three. Do I want to commit that much time to one author, one story? I’m not sure this book is that good. I think a vintage Tom Wolfe is in my near future: The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test.
What is your favorite book? For me, it’s obviously the Bible. Otherwise, I always answer this question with Gone with the Wind. I first read it in Junior High, I’ve read Margaret Mitchell’s biography, I’ve seen the movie many times, and I own an audible copy of the book too. No apologies; GWTW is a classic. Its sensibilities are dated for these times, but the characters are strong and the story is spectacular.
One of my favorite places to be is in the middle of a wonderful book, knowing that I have hours of great reading ahead. Happy reading in 2013 everyone!