Thursday, December 15, 2005
Me and Books
Well, was tagged by big sis Karen for this, so here are 15 facts about me and books: 1.) The first time I read Gone With The Wind (early teens???) I was really ticked off. I had seen the movie over and over (I probably heard it in the womb and fell in love with it at that point, as it's one of my mom's favorite movies too). I assumed they told the whole story in the movie, and found out that they left out, among other things, some of Scarlet's children. It was my first experience with the big differences between a book and its movie - and it made me mad. 2.) Continuing the GWTW theme, remember the year that The Wind Done Gone came out? My sis and I loved the title of the book - had a good laugh at how clever it was on my summer vacation. That year, totally unplanned, we bought each other the same thing for Christmas - a copy of TWDG. We both agree the title is the best part of the book, too. 3.) My favorite book of all time is Tess of the D'Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy. I read it in high school for some class or the other, and loved it. I still cry when I get to the end, too. 4.) Yes, I cry when I read good books. The first book that made me sob, though, was Jude Deveraux's A Knight in Shining Armor. I was about 14 or 15 (had to sneak that one - see the next point for how I got it), my grandparents were visiting, and I finished it one night after dinner after sneaking down to my room to read. Then I had to go upstairs and explain why my face was all splotchy. 5.)When I was about 14, my grandmother started sneaking my romance novels. Every time I saw her, she'd have three or four for me. Some were nice big historicals, others were Harlequins. All different types. The first time she gave me a stack of them - and they always came in one of those small brown paper bags, the kind you used to take your lunch in to school - she whispered "we won't tell your mom. And nothing's like the books say it is." I was in shock. But I read the books, and took her some on our next visit. 6.)A few years ago, one of my siblings expressed the opinion that "if books have been banned, it's probably for a good reason." Two months later, all of her children got banned books for Christmas presents. 7.) I have a really hard time using library books. Yes, I'm a librarian. Books that I use for research are one thing. And I do not work in a library that has a lot of fiction, so I don't read much of our collection in my spare time. Using the Public Library is really hard for me, because once I've read a book I think it's mine. I don't want to give it up - I want it to be there, on my shelf, so that I can go and pick it up and revisit the characters whenever I want. 8.) As a result of #7, I once paid the Hoover Public Library over $200 in fines - after only having a library card there for three months (this was about 6 or 7 years ago). I decided it would just be cheaper to buy the books myself. Yes, it makes me a bad librarian. I don't care. I'll just buy my books. 9.) I don't remember learning to read. I've been doing it as long as I remember, and I used to get really frustrated in the reading circles in 1st and 2nd grade with the kids who had to sound out every word. I wanted to know what happened, and I couldn't turn the page until everyone was ready to. 10.) I got in trouble more times in the 4th grade for reading during class than any other year. I got in trouble every year, but in the 4th grade I set my record (and no I don't remember how many times - I finally threw away the journals I had in grade school, and that's where the numbers were). 11.) The Laura Ingalls Wilder Little House books are some of the best books ever written. I don't remember how old I was when I read them the first time, but I can still picture the shelf that held them in the children's section of the library my mom took me to (back when she made sure I would return things so she didn't have to pay the fines). In fact, when I graduated from college I went on eBay and bought the entire set, complete with the original cardboard holder. Then I spent a Saturday re-reading them all. My best friend thought I was nuts - I got a degree in English and read children's books. 12.) I have a really hard time loaning out books. I'm afraid that I'll never get them back. If I let you borrow a book, it's a compliment. With some of my friends, I'll just buy them a cheap copy (Not that I have expensive 1st editions or anything - but they're mine!) Yes, it's psychotic. 13.) One of my favorite books is The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien. I read it in college, and I still re-read it every couple of years. I even did a paper on meta-fiction as a result of it. 14.) The first romance novel I ever read was Wild Southern Rose by Caroline Bourne. I got it and The Flame and the Flower by Kathleen Woodiwiss at the same time, but I don't remember how or where. I have a feeling I might have snagged them from my older sister's room (sorry, Karen - I still have TFATF, if you want it back - but it's falling apart). 15.) I read the entire Flowers in the Attic series by VC Andrews on the sly. I don't know how old I was, but I was sneaking it off my sister Kathy's shelf (we shared a room at the time) at night while she worked. Mom caught me with one of the books when I fell asleep with it one night and she found me in the morning. It was too late, though, because it was the last book in the series. So I finished it by the time I was 13 and Kathy moved out. I think that's where I got the idea to snag the romances in # 14 from Karen.