Growing up, I didn't realize just how lucky I was when it came to the modeling, sharing, and love of books surrounding me. I thought everyone read, was read to, was given books for birthdays and Christmases. Not to mention those YAY-You-Got-an-A-on-a-Test trips to the used bookstore.
Books were my reward for a job well done. They were my escape when I didn't want to clean my room. They were the way I bonded with my fellow book-loving school friends. They were the way I coped when I didn't have any friends at all.
They were magic, adventure, mystery, horror, science fiction, fantasy, how-to, and by golly, if Margaret hadn't asked God all those questions, I'd still be confused about boobs and periods.
When asked about who most influenced me to read, I couldn't come up with a single answer, but I did narrow down some of my influences.
- My mom is an avid bookwork and made sure my book cravings were always satisfied. She read aloud to my brother and I from babyhood through middle school. The Chronicles of Prydain by Lloyd Alexander, and the fantasy of Madeline L'Engle and Mary Stewart were certainly fun to read on my own, but much better when my mom would light a fire in the fireplace on a cold winter night, and my brother and I would listen as she read aloud.
- My big brother Dan had a bookshelf filled with The Hardy Boys, Tom Swift and The Three Investigators, which I raided often because I couldn't get enough adventure and mystery.
- My aunt made sure my life was filled with Anne of Green Gables, Little Women, Black Beauty, Nancy Drew and a billion other classics.
- My Grampa is very rarely without a book and my John Grisham obsession in high school was all thanks to him.
- My Grammy took me to the library every week, and never put a limit on how many books I could check out. I know this because when I was ten, I filled my arms with 40 books - I counted - and she still didn't make me put any back. I read them ALL.
- The local librarian came by our school to read to us, from kindergarten through middle school, and thanks to her, The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin will always be one of my most favorite books EVER.
- My closest childhood friends, Molly and Elena, had bookshelves that rivaled mine in awesomeness and we frequently roller-bladed to each others houses to "check-out" books. And anytime we came across fifty cents, we ran downtown to the used bookstore for a new addition to read and share.
So tell me... who most influenced YOU to read?
Or better yet, share your story in a blog post, and inspire someone to pick up a book and share the reading love, too.
Or better yet, share your story, and then run as fast as you can over to the blog Kid Lit Frenzy, and enter to win an advance reading copy (ARC) of the book Crescendo - sequel to Hush Hush, by Becca Fitzpatrick - and the ARC of Matched by Ally Condie (which I read this past week and LOVED).
And if you want, leave me a comment with your favorite books! I love all sorts of books, and am always looking to grow my to-read list!