Monday, November 24, 2008

Hooked on Books

Jayne over at Dainty Digs had this book meme last week that I thought sounded fun. So, while I was resting over the weekend – and as a reward for doing some of things I had to do online – I thought I’d play along.

Share seven random or weird book facts about yourself. Then tag seven other people. Notify the seven others that they have been tagged. Like Jayne, I’m not tagging anyone. If you’d like to play though, I’d love to hear your responses. Either comment here or link to your own blog entry.

My seven random or weird book facts:

1. I’ve always wanted to own a book store. Not of the Border’s or Barnes & Noble variety, though those are definitely welcome additions to culture. No. It would have to be part of an eclectic if not somewhat gritty neighborhood and be housed in a turn-of-the-century (or even older) building with original hardwood floors, gorgeous woodwork and molding throughout, that maybe needed a little extra attention. Just a little. No desire for it to be This D*mn Bookstore.
2. I often press flowers inside of my books, usually in between pages that have a passage or passages that I particularly like.
3. My grandmother used to read to me all the time. This is how I learned to read somewhere between ages 3 and 4.
4. One of my dearest friends (don’t worry, not naming you) clipped a copy of The Thornbirds from our high school library. It was eventually given to me for “safe-keeping.” I still have it.
5. I read Gone With the Wind when I was 9. That same year, I got to see the movie for the first time – in a theater. (It was the 35th anniversary of the movie.) I was floored that Scarlett’s son did not appear in the movie. (Melanie’s brother Charles left his war bride pregnant, at least in the book.) The mother argued with me on this point – only to have to take it all back.
6. The town librarian was like the Gestapo, regularly relegating me to the children’s library. (Most of which I’d read by age 7.) In fourth grade, they let me take a note from my mom to the librarian, giving me permission to read “grown-up” books. (That’s how I got my hands on Gone With the Wind.)
7. I’ve always loved classic literature and grew up adoring the likes of Shakespeare, Dickens, and Twain. The first “modern” author I fell for was Stephen King. I was barely 13 and pilfered ‘Salems’s Lot from my mother. We were preparing to move the week I started reading. As things started getting interesting, I was sleeping in a room with just a mattress and nothing on the elongated window in the corner. (It was an old house.) I stayed up all night on one of the last nights in the house because I swore I saw Danny Glick hovering outside my window.

All these years later, I still read King. I also love Dennis Lehane, Harlan Coben, Anne Rice, and Jonathan Kellerman. Out of the horror/mystery genre, I like Tom Robbins, John Irving, and Anne Tyler. Authors I read in college that stuck with me include Saul Bellow, Philip Roth, and Dorothy Parker.

Somehow, I made it to my 30s without being properly introduced to Jane Austen. A friend rectified that with the audio version of Sense and Sensibility. A few years later, my she-ro Emma Thompson got an Oscar for her screenplay adaptation of the book.

A few years after that, one of my young colleagues loaned me the A&E DVD of Pride and Prejudice, another book I enjoyed, which I've now seen about 20 times. Still need to finish reading the rest of Jane's collection.

Someday, when I have time to read books again ...


Kay said...

Weird fact #1, prompted by your last sentence: I "met" Jane Austen through the movie, "Sense & Sensibility." I wanted to know if they ever got the money, and I couldn't figure it out from the movie. So I got the book, and was reading it on lunch break at work - struggling mightily with the sentence constructions! - when a co-worker said, "Jane Austen's my favorite!" I couldn't believe it. It was KILLING me to wade through this prose.

But eventually I got the hang of it, and my sister said, "You shoulda started with 'Pride and Prejudice,'" so I read that, and LOVED it. When my mom died and my dept. at work gave me a gift certificate for books (knowing me well), I bought a leather-bound, gilt-edged edition of all of Jane Austen's works, which I have read through multiple times. In fact, it's next to the recliner right now, since I just finished my umpteenth reading of "Emma."

CD said...

I also wish there were more hours in the day to read, I miss the magical escape. The teenager has been in a King phase for the last two years. He was staring at the dog last week and I asked what was going on. Remembering he had just finished Cujo I added "the dog seems to have a glazed look in her eyes". Later that evening, I noticed the teenager had locked the dog out of his room where she usually sleeps! This D*mn Bookstore sounds great.

Jennifer said... HAVE to rent the BBC Pride and Predudice miniseries... it's 6 or so DVD's, and is just FABULOUS!

Renovation Therapy said...

I watched the entire BBC Pride & Prejudice series in ONE DAY. I may have forgotten to eat that day as well.

Colin Firth. Nuff said.

Vicki said...

You've got to try Philippa Gregory and you'd probably also like Ted Dekker if you like Stephen King!

Karen Anne said...

I had a "just children's books" librarian, too. My Mom had to come in and say it was okay for me to read books from the adult section :-)

Jane Austin movies - see if you can find the Greer Garson ones. She and Laurence Olivier made Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility.

NV said...

KayO -- Maybe the fact that I was hearing it without seeing it made Sense & Sensibility a pleasure instead of a pain. The ending in the movie is better than in the book, I think. I always have a certain someone in mind every time I see that.

I may have to borrow some of your collection. S&S and P&P are my only books of hers so far!

CD -- Too funny. King should love that he's still freakin' out teenagers all these years later! Yeah, you could come help me dig at This D*mn Bookstore, too, right? :-)

Jennifer, JeanMartha -- They are one in the same! Colin Firth rocks. The guy in this new movie version? Not so much. And if you love period pieces AND Colin Firth, here's another thing you shouldn't miss: "VALMONT."

V -- I'm always up for trying a new author. Thanks!

Karen Anne -- Loving that someone else had the Nazi librarian that got called off by the parent. :-)

I actually SAW the old P&P recently. It was funny to watch. Love ole Larry. What a dude.

Jayne said...

I am incredibly lucky to have the perfect bookstore--one just like you described--a mere six blocks from my house. The woman who owns it, Pat Worth, is a retired architect who said it was a dream of hers to own a bookstore. Oh, and they have coffee, cookies, and Italian ices. Yum.

MonkeyGirl said...

I would seriously hang out at This D*mn Bookstore and just be one of those eccentric fixtures in the corner! Plus if you opened the store, then I would have a place to peddle my greeting cards that I will someday make!

sewwhat? said...

My musical friends who like to read and cook wanted to open a bookstore, calling it "My Bach is better than my Bite", with books on the side.

I have 10 books on the nightstand, all partially read. I have so many purchased and not read, I need to stay in bed for a month to finish them.

Where is that copy of Thornbirds? I remember locking myself in the bedroom reading the end of that book, even though my darling children (MonkeyGirl and sibs) were crying for their mommy, while I was crying over the end of the priest!

Ann said...

I love bookstores! Aren't they comforting or something?

I am so addicted to Austen - I have ALL the DVDs and watch them constantly - such a dork. Did you know there are Austen blogs out there? Kinda fun.

NV said...

Jayne -- I am SO jealous. If I had a place in walking, biking distance like that ... SO many projects just would NOT get done.

MG -- Yeah! Cards AND some scrapbooking stuff. Could also have a photography corner. OK. Must stop. That's a lottery dream.

sewwhat -- LOVE the name idea. After all this, I'd probably have to call it This D*mn Bookstore. Yeah, the Thornbirds are going to be on again this week. It's the 25th anniversary of the miniseries. Sigh.

NV said...

Ann -- YES! bookstores are da bomb. :-)

And yes to Austen sites. One of them started following me on Twitter recently. Pretty cool.

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