Where My Reading Obsession Came From

Posted by Steph on April - 1 - 2013

Since I don’t have a book written yet (it’s in the works, so someday hopefully 😉 I’d like to at least dedicate a post to the person who played one of the greatest influences in my literary life, my grandma.  This time of year is always a rough one for me, being it marks the anniversary of her losing the battle of breast cancer, but it does give me a chance to reflect too.  It’s been 9 years now since she’s passed away, yet some of the strongest memories I have of her revolve around reading, which I believe plays a very important part in making me who I am today and why books are so important to me. Everyone has a story of why they’re a “reader”, so here is mine…

The two of us.

The two of us.

Every summer I would get to spend one whole week with my grandparents by myself and what I looked forward to the most during that week was the time spent reading with my grandma.  One of the first things on our agenda when I got to her house was to go to the library and pick out a huge stack of books for the week. We would spend quite some time in her tiny little hometown library picking out the “right” ones (I’d always end up making her choose mine). Then every night she would sleep in my bed with me (because the basement was scary) and we would read into the wee hours of the night, however, I would always fall asleep first.  Sometimes I would try and see if I could finish reading a page before her (it never worked). I would even try to, sneakily, read parts of her “grown-up” books too, because it made me feel like a rebel. I remember reading Many Waters by Madeliene L’Engle, and Stuart Little and Trumpet of the Swan by E.B. White during my weekly stays. These were my gateway reads…and she was my influence.

Since then I’ve gone on to get a degree in English, had a chance to work at four different libraries, and now have the amazing opportunity of managing a small town library and going back to school online (simultaneously) for my Masters in Library Science, all the while reading voraciously.  And all of this is, I can almost guarantee would not have happened if not for my grandma’s influence.

Well since this is still a book blog, I do have a list to tie in 🙂 Not too long ago my mom gave me a list she found in one of my grandma’s old wallets, a “library” list.  Now, even though my grandma was a huge influence on me when it comes to reading, I’ve found we really don’t have the same tastes after reading this list.  However, since I don’t seem to have evolved into reading the same types of books she did, it does give me the opportunity to challenge myself by trying to read a few of the titles on her list.  So without further ado here are some titles from my grandma’s library list (unfortunately you can’t see her gorgeous handwriting):

Sons of Fortune by Jeffrey Archer

Light in Shadow by Jayne Ann Krentz

This Time Love by Elizabeth Lowell

A Dream to Follow & An Untamed Land by Lauraine Snelling

Whispers at Midnight by Karen Robards

The Other Twin by Katharine Stone

By the Light of the Moon by Dean Koontz

Answered Prayers by Danielle Steele

Now none of these are ones I would choose on my own, but maybe by reading them I will learn to like something else…or at least know what more patrons are talking about 🙂

If anyone wants to recommend me one of these, I’d appreciate a starting point!

Be Sociable, Share!

2 Responses so far.

  1. Steve says:

    Nice read Steph. I miss her too.

  2. Susan Barrett says:

    It’s great to hear who influenced you to read. You were fortunate to have such a wonderful grandma. I enjoyed reading about your time together.