Maybe it's because I was raised by a librarian. Maybe it's because I belong to a book club that meets once a month and talks a little about the book we all read and a lot about what's happening in our own lives. Maybe it's because I write these short little stories and hope that at least someone will get some enjoyment by actually reading them. Or maybe it's because I genuinely think reading a book is one of the most entertaining things you can do in your spare time.
One of my fellow book-clubbers just said something funny during our last monthly meeting of the minds. She said, "My life is pretty boring. So I just pick up a book and get to live a totally different life." We all laughed, of course. But it's true. That's what books do!
Another book-clubber said, "I think I've learned so much, even though what we read is just fiction."
I agree. I think you gain experiences that you may never have on your own. We've read a book about a girl on death row. I really hope to never have that actual experience, but it was interesting and thought-provoking. I read another book about a family suffering with Alzheimer's disease. While I've never personally experienced what it's like to live with that illness, it gave me a greater understanding and empathy.
Books have a way of teaching us life lessons and real life skills. Books allow us to travel to places we never actually set foot in. We get a glimpse into different cultures, different neighborhoods, different walks of life. And I love that. As much as I like to actually interact with real people, I really love to snuggle into my jammies, curl up with my kitties, and interact with make-believe people living out their lives on the pages of a book.
I mainly read murder mysteries, cop dramas, and courtroom thrillers. I've been asked many times for a book recommendation from someone who is looking to get back into reading or start reading for the first time. The absolute worst question to ask a book lover is: "What's your favorite book? I want to read it."
That's like asking a parent to pick their favorite kid. You just can't. They are all so different and you love them for different reasons.
But that all changed for me last summer. If I can recommend a book to you, it's this one:
So if you're one of those people who say "I'm not a reader," I really would urge you to try. And if you believe in fate (and I really do), maybe you'd like a book to cross your path by chance, too. Sound exciting? Just fill out the form below and you'll get a few surprise books in your mailbox. You'll also get to send a random stranger a book of your choice and maybe change or enhance their life in the process.
Now if you'll excuse me, I've got a few chapters to read.