Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Books that shaped my life

Tara's Gallery theme this week - books. Haven't been inspired to write any blogs for a while so thank you Tara for giving me a kick start

Once upon a time now you are sitting comfortably I will begin. As a child my life was my books! My days were spent curled up in a ball somewhere reading and reading and yes more reading. I would literally have to be turfed out of the house to "get some fresh air". As the teenage years fell by the wayside and I became an adult somewhere my love of books was exchanged for love of other stuff. When the kids were small I read to them from the moment they were born. I would like to think that this helped them become the articulate intelligent people they now are. ( I say articulate but I need a translator my He-man's 18 year old grunts and She-ra's 16 year old galloping-at-speed dialogue) These days I always have a book on the go and am a "sort of" member of a book club. Thing is I am so goddamn tired when I get to bed that I can end up reading the same paragraph for weeks on end. Plus stress, of which I seem to have my fair share, robs me of my ability to concentrate and read. Bulk reading seems to have become the preserve of holidays. Reading for pleasure curled up on the sofa mid afternoon seems to have become nothing more than a childhood memory. Here are some books which have shaped my life

Enid Blyton - Including The Faraway Tree, Mallory Towers and Famous Five. These were all saved and have been read through the generations. Currently sat on my sisters book shelf waiting for the 8 year old to wade her way through.

Charlottes Web - E.B.White. I still have a  love of pigs, can't kill a spider, named my first pet after said pig and still cry at the end of this book.

Hans Christian Andersen's Fairy tales - I still have this book! It's full of beautiful illustrations and typical of the books my dad gave me.

Dr Seuss - gotta love a bit of green eggs and ham. I even had a song book!

Charlie Brown series - Charles M. Schulz, given to me by Grumps when he first met my mother. Great books for adults and children alike. I still want a beagle plus my daughter is pig pen and I have music from the TV series on  my phone. Call me nostalgic.

John Wyndham - I became addicted to these at one point which I read along side

Edna O'Brien - This must have been the period in which I started to learn about feminism, not that I would class O'Brien in a flag bearer for that cause, and I remember my Step mum giving me lots of books on the subject.Wong and Greer if I remember rightly. The bookshelves still heave with a variety of titles.

I became liberated as a teen when I read Molly Parkin. My eyes were on stalks. So this was sex! I have just re read her first book and it seems so tame/dated by today standards.

Delia Smith - Complete Cookery Course. This was a gift from my mother & grumps before I went to be an Au pair. I still have it and use it today. It was the last book she bought for me.

Lemony Snicket - We still love these as a family and someone somewhere has got the entire audio collection which I would really like back. The language in these were fantastic and would keep the whole family talking for hours giving us our own in jokes and sayings. Absolutely fabulous!

Spike Milligan's Bad Jelly the Witch. I loved Spike's wacky humour as a child and was delighted to read this one to my two.its been read more times than I care to say and now waits to be rediscovered by my niece and nephew.

The following books I never want to see again, The Mr Men and Little Miss series and Thomas the bleedin' Tank engine. Read every night night after night til the children knew them verbatim and I couldn't skip pages.

I am deliberately not mentioning J.K.Rowling as a book that shaped my life although it definitely did for my daughter, prime target audience at the time. I found them dreadfully dull books to read and very slow. Thank god for the films is all I say.

I now have the pleasure of reading to my niece and nephew and am so delighted the nephew has really come in to his own of late. He still loves...
click here for Amazon

Having wanted to study American Studies I love all that is Americana  the most recent book that left a long last impression with me is The Brief History of the Dead" by Kevin Brockmeier of whom I have gone to read more of his work. I would so love to believe in the sentiment of the book. I will still devour most things American set in any period along with books set in 18th century Britain.

These days my bookshelves are a testament to OCD. Colour Coordinated or what? Bet there's a book on that too

..And they all lived happily ever after.
The end

PS I have put a link to Amazon for as many of the books or authors as I could find if I have tempted you to look further