"A house without books is like a room without windows." -Horace Mann

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Fact and Fiction

Fact: I love reading.  I love books.  I love holding them, smelling them, owning them, giving them away to be read, having them come home to me again.  I love talking about books. 

Fiction: I am the most well-read person you will ever meet. 

I read a lot, but not compared to many.  My own mother has me beat by a long shot.  In fact, I get great glee when I come across a book I can recommend to her, since it is so often the other way around.  The more I have studied literature and read books, the more I realize just how little I have read.  And how much there is that awaits me.  It almost makes me salivate to think of the next book I will stay up late devouring. 

I find myself often asked for book recommendations.  It doesn't take much to have me overflowing with words, lists, titles, authors.  And yet, there is always another that I remember later.  Always another.  May it ever be so. 

This "room with windows" will be my bookshelf.  Here I will collect and converse about all good books.  Other opinions will differ from mine, as would be expected.  Opinions are both fact and fiction.  And as one of my favorite quotes reads, "Fact and Fiction are different truths."  I hope you find your own truths within a few of these books.


  1. What are your thoughts on e-readers -- Kindles, iPads, etc. I'm guessing your a solid-book fan, but I'm curious! (Maybe that's outside the scope of the blog...)

  2. If the topic has anything remotely to do with books, I'd say its in the scope. I have not honestly tried any of the e-readers, but based on no particular experience and total bias, I'd say I'm not a fan. First, they don't smell like the pages of a book. Second, they don't feel like a book. Third, books are one of the last ways that I completely escape from the lure of technology, and an e-reader would partially defeat that purpose. What are your thoughts?

  3. Well, I'm going to try the new Kindle when it comes out at the end of next month. I agree with you on all points, and I don't think e-readers will replace books -- certainly not for me. I love my creased, worn copies of "The Count of Monte Christo," "The Lord of the Rings," and "The Killer Angels."

    But for some things, I think an e-reader could be well-suited. A pocket mystery, say. Or that great, big, new hardback tome that's WAY too cumbersome to haul around -- I'm in the middle of "The Passage" now; I finished "Under the Dome" last fall and my arms still hurt. Or riding on the subway. Or taking a "stack" of books to the beach.

    So I'll give it a shot and see how it goes. I have family members who fly often and use it for travel reading, which is smart. They really like them, though as I say, they're not "replacing" actual books. Just augmenting their reading.

    A couple studies have shown that people who get e-readers actually buy more regular books than they did before. So if it gets people reading ANYTHING, then I can't be entirely opposed to it!

    Still. Hard to imagine "curling up with a good... Kindle," isn't it?

  4. I can see how in the cases you mention, it would be appropriate, even nice. Maybe for those huge Complete Works of Shakespeare books we lugged around that one semester?! I still have it, and the Braden qoutes we collected. Good times. Yes, for travelers, or for light reading, textbooks even, I think it wouldn't be too bad, but certainly not to replace the paper versions.

  5. I would love to recommend some books, but most are for younger readers! Some I read when I was young and don't know if I'd like them as much now, but I think I would.

    Like: "The Giver" and "Clara Barton and the American Red Cross" (Heroes of America) by Eve Marko.
    Also: "The Outsiders" "Stepping on the Cracks"
    "My Brother Sam is Dead"
    "Number the Stars"
    "All Quiet on the Western Front."

    Some that are for adults are:
    Memoirs of a Geisha- didn't like the movie though.
    Work and the Glory series

    I don't know if you like Stephen King cause he has a potty mouth and lots of gore, but her wrote a few good ones. Let me know if you are interested.

    "Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West"

  6. Lisa, I love the Giver, My Brother Sam is Dead and Number the Stars. Young reader books are just as good as adult fiction, as long as they are well written. Plan to read the others. I'm not a big fan of the Work and Glory series myself. I do not like Stephen King, I just don't do horror at all, its not worth the nightmares it gives me. I not only want to read Wicked, but I really want to see the play as well. Thanks for sharing!

  7. Kara I don't know if you know that Wicked the book is very very different from the Broadway musical. Many people say they don't know how the musical came to be from such a dreary book. It wasn't what I expected it to be at all. In fact, I didn't even finish it. But that was several years ago so maybe it wouldn't seem so boring to me anymore.