Saturday, April 23, 2016
Update: Hour One
I just finished Jennifer L. Holm's The Fourteenth Goldfish. Very cute. I started with it because it's due at the library today, no more renewals! Also because I wanted something light to wake up with.
This hour's challenge is to share five childhood reading/people memories. I realized I can probably come up with five memories specifically around my big sister, Peg. Everyone in my family liked to read and encouraged my reading, but Peg had a particular influence on my reading development. We're basically the same age now, but growing up, eleven years was a big difference.
1. One summer--I think I was 8 or 9--we read The Silver Chair together. After the dinner dishes were washed, we'd lay on the chaise lounge in the backyard together and read aloud. One night she'd read two chapters, and the next night I'd read one. The Silver Chair has always been my favorite Narnian book, and I can't say if it's the story alone, or the positive associations I have with it.
2. I had appendicitis when I was ten, right at the end of the school year. My family brought me books in the hospital and as I recovered. Peg, who knew I was a fan of Nancy Drew, The Three Investigators, and Trixie Belden, decided I might be ready for Agatha Christie. I don't remember which book she started me on, but I know that by the time I was a sophomore in high school, I'd read pretty much everything Christie had written, moved on to Dorothy Sayers and Josephine Tey, and was well on my way to a lifetime of loving mysteries.
3. The following winter, when I was eleven, we had a huge ice storm in Portland. We lost electricity for several days, and spent a lot of time in our basement, by the fireplace, reading by kerosene lantern light. Peg started reading Oliver Twist to me, and I finished it on my own. I felt so grown-up, to be reading Dickens, and I loved the drama of the story.
4. For an 8th grade graduation present, Peg gave me a multivolume book of Jane Austen's collected works. This was another chance to step up my reading game. I liked Emma, Pride and Prejudice, and Sense and Sensibility, but the others were a bit much for me. I've come back to the volume over the years though, growing into Jane (and celebrating the birth of Peg's daughter Emma, consciously named for the eponymous heroine).
5. I'm going to cheat and leave childhood memories out of this. Peg continues to be someone who shares my taste in books, and nothing makes me happier than when I can loan a book to her that she ends up really liking.