The Books of My Life

I am shamelessly stealing this concept from Entertainment Weekly from when they did an interview with Taylor Jenkins Reid. I found it interesting and introspective, so I’m doing it for myself. I can’t promise it will be as interesting or introspective, but you’ll learn something new about me. And hey, that’s something too.

The first book I remember loving as a kid

You may be surprised that I wasn’t a big fan of reading when I was a kid. The only times I read were for school. It took me until my teen years to start reading on my volition. But one of the books I was assigned to reading in school that I really loved was Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. Before being assigned it, I had never heard of the story. So it was all brand new to me when I read it. Once I got over how long it was, I fell in love with the story of the four sisters. Which truly says how great it is because I was actively doing schoolwork on it and I still find it enjoyable.

The first book I bought with my own money

When I did start reading in my teen years, I mainly stuck to checking out books from either my school’s library or the neighborhood library. I really didn’t buy many books growing up. But I believe the first book I brought with my own was Vicious by V.E. Schwab. I had read it before and loved it. And I knew when I started to build my own little library in my home, I was going to start with the books I had already loved. It just so happened that I found a steal of a deal for Vicious and started with that.

The book I had to sneak to read growing up

None. Like I said I didn’t read much outside of school when I was a kid. When I did, I was 12 or 13 and my parents were in full support of the hobby. They never cared what I was reading. They were just happy I was reading.

A book I’ve pretended to have read

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. For the life of me, I don’t know how I’ve been able to avoid reading this book. It somehow never got assigned to me in the English classes I took. At least not yet anyway. I can see it sneaking its way into one of my college English courses. If that happens, I’ll just have to bite the bullet and finally read this classic.

The book that changed my life

The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera. This was the book that started it all. I had read books before. Books that I enjoyed, even loved. But this one was where I had a lightbulb moment of realizing that maybe it wasn’t that I disliked reading. But that I disliked most of the books the education system forced me to read. I read The Unbearable Lightness of Being of my own free will based on a friend’s recommendation. The experience of reading it made me wonder what I was missing out on by not reading for pleasure. Then I picked up more books and more. And I just haven’t stopped.

The book that always makes me laugh

Anxious People by Fredrik Backman. It’s a charming and quirky book that managed to make me laugh and feel all the things. A truly impressive feat. Another book I look to add to my personal library soon.

The last book to make me cry

Men We Reaped by Jesmyn Ward. The book details the five men in Ward’s life that she has lost. From close friends to her brother. It’s a devastating book. Each death hits the reader harder than the last because you really get to understand how much these men meant to the people in their lives. Ward’s grief is so palpable, that I couldn’t help but be overwhelmed with sadness too.

My literacy crush.

I wouldn’t say I get literacy crushes because that would require remembering characters’ names after you’ve read their books. And that’s just not something I do. But if you want some type of answer, I do typically like the love interests in an Emily Henry book. She writes the best leading men and great female leads.

The screen adaptation of a novel that I love

The Stepford Wives by Ira Levin. I saw the movie before I read the book. I thoroughly enjoyed the 1975 movie and sought out the book. I do think the book is better, but the movie did a fantastic translating the horror onto the screen. The book and movie are a great pairing if you’ve never seen or read them.

What I’m reading now?

Home Is Not a Country by Safia Elhillo. I’ve been really getting into novels that are in verse. Elizabeth Acevedo is the one to blame (thank) for that. I’ve been scouting out books written in verse since reading The Poet X a few years ago. I’ve never been disappointed with them. They always turn out to be a great read for me, and so far Home Is Not a Country looks to be continuing that trend.

The book I want to be remembered for

Similar to Reid in her interview, I hope it’s not a book I’ve written yet. I’m only 19. I would like to think my best writing years are ahead of me and are not in the past. The book I could be remembered for could be the book I’m currently writing or the one I will write 10 years from now. Who’s to say? But if I’m remembered for any of my books, that would be an amazing achievement.

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