Tried and True Friends
By Laura Bradford
Even as a little girl, I could lose myself in the pages of a book for hours. I'd hole up at the desk in my bedroom and read until I was forced to stop for something like food or sleep.
When I was super little, it was books like CORDOROY and The GIVING TREE that sucked me in. Oh, and the one about the little snow plow (I think) that watched his favorite town change from a quiet place to a big city...I remember tracing his paths with my finger, again and again.
As I grew older, I moved on to stories like Little House on the Prairie, Judy Blume, Nancy Drew, Mary Higgins Clark (those were the best). Essentially, if it was a book, I read it. I liked the escape, the chance to lose myself in the pages of a story that took me somewhere different than my desk...in my bedroom.
Books, I suppose, were my most tried and true friends. They were always there, always ready to spend the day with me. They could make me laugh, they could make me cry, they could make me suck in my breath out of fear...but no matter how they affected me at any given moment, they were always there.
Over the last year or so, my reading has fallen off. Or, rather, the time to read has fallen off. Deadlines upon deadlines are one of the leading culprits in that sorry state of affairs.
So when a window opens on time to read, I seize it. Hard. Last week, I turned in the 8th book in my Southern Sewing Circle series, leaving me with a two week gap before I really have to be at the keyboard again. Of course, the first few days were spent catching up on all those things I ignored while writing (laundry, cleaning, painting my eldest daughter's bedroom, etc). I knew I wanted to read once the chores were done, but it kept getting put off.
Finally, over the weekend, I was in Target with the kids. One was trying on clothes, the other was looking at CDs, and so I wandered through the book section (a.k.a. my happy place). Something about the cover of Emilie Richards' ONE MOUNTAIN AWAY spoke to me. I picked it up, read the synopsis, and stuck it in my cart (along with the shelf and sheets that I was purchasing to go with my daughter's newly painted room). When we were done, we headed home, and the book was pushed to the side while we finished said room.
That "put aside" mentality changed on Wednesday when the kids went off for their first day of school. I got my chores done, my errands run, and about an hour before they were due home, I finally sat down with my new purchase. Sure enough, within two pages, I was reminded of all the reasons I love to read. :)
Today, I've got less than 100 pages left of ONE MOUNTAIN AWAY and I have little doubt I'll finish it before the end of the day. Though, in all fairness, this is one book I'm truly in a quandry about finishing. It's good. Really really good. And like all good things, it's hard to see it end.
Tell me, what books did you enjoy as a young teen? Why do you like to read? And finally, what are you reading now?
*P.S. I'll be posting details of a fun contest on my website later today. So come on over and check it out if you can. There's books involved... :)