My Love of Books

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

I have been a book-lover forever. My parents would read to me when I was younger and then I'd read
to them. I loved reading so much that my mum would sometimes use it as a punishment. "No, Valerie, you cannot read today! Go clean your room!"

When I was in elementary and middle school I loved reading science-y books. Anything in the 500s I would devour. Ancient Egypt. Pyramids. Space. Spiders. I read to learn and better understand all the things I couldn't comprehend.

Via Franklin County Kids Library

Then I discovered the Young Adult section at Barnes and Noble. My dad and I would go and treat it like a library, reading books and magazines while my mum went shopping. I'd pick a book from the shelf, then sit on the floor - or if I was really lucky, one of the well-worn sofa chairs and read for hours. Then the next week I'd do it again until I finished the book. As soon as I was done, I'd put it up and go straight to the next one.

In high school I became a library volunteer, shelving books and scanning incoming and outgoing books. As I scanned them I'd read their sleeves or back covers. This was the first time I remember challenging myself to read a certain amount of books within a certain amount of time.

When I got to college my love of reading didn't falter. I worked at both the school library and the bookstore. Borrowing and buying books with my discount like crazy.

A few years ago I even got a job at a local SA library. It was great because one of the perks was no due dates!

Now, I visit the library about every two weeks. I'm still in love with YA books but every so often I'll read something tougher. I like to read the classics or books they make you read in English classes. Sometimes I'll read an action or thriller and I'm always down to read one of Stephen King's newest.

I've never gotten tired of reading. I have learned so much through the words of others. I know that I did so well in school because I loved reading. I also attribute my empathy for others to the books I have read.

I believe that books can change people. The written word can alter their opinions and their outlooks. We should be encouraging everyone to read more; whether that's by buying eBooks, listening to audio books, or borrowing them from the library. And it doesn't matter if it's War and Peace, Not That Kind of Girl, or The Hunger Games. Reading teaches people of all ages how to think critically, how to empathize with others, and how to sit still in contentment.

I have tons of favorite books. I have books that I've hated but left me thinking long after I'd finished. What books have inspired, impacted, or changed you?

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