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Tuesday, April 28, 2015

7 Bookish Things About Me

I love books. Love love LOVE books. I love all kinds - young adult, science fiction, mystery, picture books - you get the idea.

Admittedly I haven't been reading as much as I usually do lately since life and insomnia and my recent move have all gotten in the way, but that in NO WAY diminishes my love of books. Every day the list of "to read" grows longer by the second.

One of the many book-centric pages/groups that I follow on Facebook is called For Reading Addicts, and today when perusing their posts, I came across a posting called 7 Bookish Things About Me.

So I thought I'd do my own.

Fact One - Started Reading in Kindergarten

Now before anyone gets bent out of shape, I'm not claiming to be reading Shakespeare or any of the classics, but I had an interest in reading back in the day.

I was 4 years old when I started kindergarten due to when my birthday fell (November). I think I was already 5 by the time books came into play. I remember we had stations - there was an art station, a toy station, etc... I'm not sure if there was an actual BOOK station - it may have just been near the toys. But we were split into small groups, and we'd have a certain amount of time at each station before we had to move to another one. I gravitated toward the bookcase.

There was this large yellow thin hardbound book that was about all the different modes of transportation - cars, trains, planes, boats, etc - and every time we changed stations, and I came back to the books, I would grab that book and stare at the pages intently.

That day after we got back from lunch and all the other kids were having nap time, the teacher pulled me aside at her desk and pulled out the book. She had commented on how I seemed to like the book a lot and wanted to see what I could read. I sounded out some words, and she helped me with what I didn't know, but yeah.

Around this time my brother and I had a Sesame Street book club membership - I loved those books, and they were inherited by my niece - but books and stories were always a thing for me.

Fact Two - School Reading Made Me Sad

Reading is something that gives me joy. Even though I'm an avid reader eating up books - like BonBons during PMS - it was something I did at my own pace. Now I have been known to bring a book to the table which was actually frowned upon by my mother's husband when they were still dating he had come over for dinner and was upset that I had a book. He never really talks to me anyway so I didn't see what the problem was.

But being assigned chapters seemed to suck the fun out of reading for me... at least for school. Then again if I liked the book, I usually read ahead and was caught up with homework for that class. But still... being told to read something bothers me. *I* want to read it not because I HAVE to but because I WANT to.

I'm also like that with friends that tell me I MUST read something. Okay, I'll add it to the list. But some get insistent. Like "NO! YOU MUST READ IT NOW!!!" When people get that pushy about anything, I'm usually like "See ya bitches! I'm out." So those books - which most of the time are already on the "to read" list - get pushed WAY down the list (but never knocked off because I'd never do that to books).

Fact Three - My Mom Gave Me Romance Novels To Read As A Kid

Back in the day, my mom - a single parent - couldn't be bothered to take me to the library. I knew we didn't have a lot of money so I never got to buy any books from the store or book fairs, but the library was the best place in the whole world. What? I can check out as many books as I can carry? Hot damn!

But the more I bothered my mother, the more she said no.

Then one day she came home from work with a small box in hand and said, "Here I brought you something." In the small cardboard box that something else had already been shipped in and my mom was just using it to carry stuff in were a bunch of books. I was amazed! What? My mother brought me books? And more than one? Wow!

So I took them into my room and dumped them all out on my bed. That's when I saw them for what they actually were: Harlequinn Romance Serials. (From what I understood, my mother's boss always bought a lot of things online so much so that they always sent her a little something extra in with her shipment. Apparently some of those extra items were novels like these, and she gave them to my mom to give to me.)

Makes me think of the conversations at work they had. 

Mom: My daughter keeps bothering me for books.
Mom's Boss: Here, give her some smut. That'll shut her up.
Mom: Gee, thanks boss.

In all honesty, my mother's not a reader like me. The most avid reads she's done were recipes, not stories.

There were about 6-8 of these books, most of them period pieces with a man and a woman on the cover either smiling or laughing at each other or tangled up in some lustful embrace. I remember reading each of the blurbs on the back thinking "WTF?" (Now I feel I should say that my mother and I never really saw eye-to-eye on things - meaning she had her old school "What was good for me when I was your age in a different country..." way of thinking versus my "open-minded current day and age for my reality" way of thinking. I was around 11-12 years old maybe, and she never had the sex talk with me, but I knew more about sex than she would have liked me to have at that age. I remember trying to tell her about the books and how they were romance novels, etc, but books were books to her, and she didn't see anything wrong with them. It became a "don't read them if you don't want to read them" but since they were the only books I had access to, I read one. So by the least stupid blurb on the back of the books, I picked one and read it... all the time mentally asking questions like "What the hell?" and "Why the fuck would you do that?" and "Why am I reading this piece of crap?"

From what I can recall, the book was about a lady who used to date some dude named Evan. She broke up with him, and he eventually died. Some time later, she's leaving for a business trip and while riding in the taxi to the airport, the cabbie misses his turn off. We then find out the cabbie is actually Evan's brother who blames the chic for his brother's death and is kidnapping her to take her back to his mother to beg for forgiveness. While en route, they get caught in a snow storm and have to hole up in a cabin where he handcuffs her to the bed so she doesn't get away, but then looks at her just sitting there doing nothing, gets turned on and they end up having sex a few times, and after every time, he blames her for seducing him (when clearly she hasn't). Later she meets up with the mother who apologizes for her son since he hasn't taken his brother's death well. In the end, she goes back to her life, occasionally having flings with the brother who still hates her.

Needless to say I didn't read the others.

Fact Four - Horror Is My Jam

When I finally had some money whether it was collected from birthdays or holidays or allowances from doing stuff around the house or for family, I wanted to buy books. 

There was this one book that I was OBSESSED with: "The Vision" by Dean Koontz.

I will admit that it was the visual that got me first... then the blurb. The book is about a clairvoyant woman who has visions that help the police with crimes, but is also being tortured by vision from the man that tortured so many years ago and vows to come back for her.

Every time I had money, the book wasn't in stock. When I didn't have money, the store had multiple copies in stock. Finally I got it and read it in about a day. It wasn't until later I bonded with a girl from school who read the same author, and she suggested other books of his that I would like. (Around this time, I was also really into Stephen King, but both authors have such a large resume of titles, it's rather hard to keep up.

Fact Five - Audiobooks vs Paper Books

I partake in both forms of books. I used to do audiobooks a lot more when I had a longer commute, but at present with the new place, I'm way closer to work so I save the books for road trips or when I'm out and about running errands.

It's all about which strikes my fancy more. Sometimes I can't get into reading a book no matter how well it's written - I have no idea why - but then the audiobook reader is really good so I listen to the book and usually finish it in no time at all. The opposite is true as well. I've gone to the library to get the audiobook of something one of my book groups is reading, and - if possible - I get the audio and the paper book because sometimes the reader just isn't striking a chord with me.

But in the end, it's all about story.

Fact Six - A Sense of Completion

If I read a book that is the beginning of a series, there's something in me that just has to finish the series. I've read all the Twilight Books by Stephanie Meyer as well as listened to the audio of The Host. I listened to Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James and - though it's not a priority - plan on READING (oy with the audio) the final two. I've only read Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams but none of the others in the series. I've read all the Codex Alera books by Jim Butcher and am currently working through Skin Game. I lost track of where I left off with the Anita Blake series by Laurell K. Hamilton (I think Bullet?) and have only read the first book in her Meredith Gentry series. I need to finish the last Sookie Stackhouse book by Charlaine Harris and am eagerly awaiting the next book in her Midnight trilogy, and since some of her mystery characters have been mentioned in the first book Midnight book, I wish to read her Aurora Teagarden and Lily Bard books. (I wish there was more in the Grave series. I liked that one, too.)

And the list goes on and on and on.

Though there is only one book that I read that has a sequel that I will never read although there is a grain of salt curiosity about it since the first book melted my brain... that grain of salt is curious to see if the writing/story got any better. (My best guess is probably not.)

Fact Seven - I'm A One Woman Show

As a writer, I talk to my characters as well as act out scenes to see if the words work. (I'm a healthy schizophrenic I am!). *proud grin*

In the same vein, when alone, I read aloud and act out every part complete with accents, dialects, and sometimes walking and moving this way and that as described on the page.

I enjoy it greatly and wish to read audiobooks someday. I think that would be fun. (Well voiceover in general, but you get my meaning, right?)

*******

Okay, I think that's it for this post. Feel free to add your own if you like. I'd love to read them.

Now it's off to bed with me to fight the never-ending battle with the terrible monster INSOMNIA and see if I can defeat one more night. (Because this lady's got work in six hours.)

Later my lovelies.

Have Goodness!
Rae

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