I love to read, all the time. I wish that I could just wake up in the morning open a book and read it from cover to cover. However, there are other things that need to be done throughout the day and reading becomes a hobby for those few moments I can sneak in once in a while. When my children were going to elementary school I would pick them up every day and usually I would go about 15 minutes early to get a good parking spot and to have a few minutes to read. If I were really into the book I would try to get to the school 30 minutes early to sneak in a few more minutes of my obsession.
I have read a lot of books. Now looking over the past “few” years since I started reading I wish I had written down every book I had ever read. What a list that would have been. I remember some of my favorites but those that did not leave a mark in my memory have long been forgotten. You know the books, the titles you had to read for school homework.
Let’s start with a little list of some of my favorite books. First of all, The Bridges of Madison County by Robert James Waller. I came across this book at a lodge retreat. There it was on the shelf just begging me to read it, but I had to wait until I got home to get a copy and I was immersed in the writing and the story. Bridges of Madison County is still one of my all time favorites. It lead me to read all of the books by Mr. Waller. The movie was good but not nearly as good as the book. That would be true for any book I have read… the book is always better!
These are in no particular order, but next on my list is Angela’s Ashes: A Memoir by Frank McCourt. I know this was made into a movie as well. But I read the book long before the movie. I love it so much I read it a couple of times and then I listened to the book on tape read by the author. Angela’s Ashes is full of humor, wit, compassion and sadness. It is the true story of Frank McCourt’s life in Limerick, Ireland.
As I am reminiscing and writing this list it appears that most of my favorite books have been made into movies. I read them before they were movies and the book is still always better than the movie.
Next is The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks. When I first read this book I was touched by the compassion the old man had for his wife in the nursing home. How difficult it would be to have the love of your life not remember who you are. Yet he is patient, loving and kind. This book really touched my heart.
There is an interesting story about this next book, Circle of Doors by Ranse Parker. My husband and I were walking through a Costco one day and saw an author signing books. As we were walking through the store, my husband said that the name sounded familiar to him. So we approached this author and began this conversation, “do I know you from somewhere?” They figured out that they were business acquaintances and then Ranse Parker proceeded to tell us
about how this book came to be written. His story was fascinating. He told about a dream he had and a premonition that he had to write this book. Needless to say, I was intrigued to buy the book. As I read Circle of Doors, I could not put it down. The story took me on an adventurous journey that I was not prepared for and gave me a lot of thought provoking ideas.
Here is one that was not made into a movie, at least not in the United States as far as I am aware. Totto-Chan: The Little Girl at the Window by Tetsuko Kuroyanagi (translated by Dorothy Britton). As a teenager my family had a foreign exchange student living with us from Japan. Her name was Kayoko. My family loved having her live with us. My parents spoke Japanese so it was great to have someone around for them to polish up their Japanese language skills. Kayoko went back to Japan after her school year in Utah and sent us a package. The package contained the book, Totto-Chan: The Little Girl at the Window. I read it and loved it. So I have read it a few times because of the great message and story about a little girl who does not fit in with the traditional schools and goes to a special school in an old railroad car. The school combined learning with fun and freedom. Something I think all schools should have in their curriculum.
My list could go on and on, but I know that there is just not enough time or space for me to list all the books I have read in my 30 plus years of reading. I have some favorite biographies, some favorite classics, some favorite children’s books and some favorite religious books. I have not even told you much about what these books are about. Just know that these books are a few that have really touched my life. What are some of your favorite books? What books have touched your life? What books are unforgettable to you?
Every book I have read teaches me something new. I learn about countries, cultures, places, ideas and mostly about people. Even though a lot of the books I have read are fiction, the lessons about life are still there and have helped me in one way or another. Every person has a story. Every person has a purpose. Every person has worth in this life. You have a purpose and worth. What is your story?