Friday, April 2, 2010

Weekly Geeks 2010-11: In the Beginning

I'm asking you to think back to the moment when you realized "I am a reader!" The moment you felt that desire to read everything! The moment you knew you were different than most of those around you and that this reading thing was for real. Tell us what book you were reading when that moment occurred. If you can't pin it down to one book, what other books define this moment in your life? Do you have a story that goes along with this moment? Please do share.

I've been thinking about this topic all week and have been unable to sit down (with two free hands) to write about it!! The more I've thought about it, the more I see my beginning as a reader as a series of events.

(1)  I don't know for sure, but I'm guessing I was in 3rd grade when my older brother (7 years older) decided it was time for me to read real books, which meant fantasy books. He convinced me to check out The Book of Three by Lloyd Alexander from my tiny school library (which was a big deal all by itself) and then set me up on his bed right next to him to read together. Can I even express what a huge thing that was?? I was in heaven. The only problem was that the book was still a little hard for me, and I had my first experience with reading the words but not understanding. (Many experiences with this and text books to follow in years to come.) My brother was annoyed and impatient with me when I confessed my weakness. Back on familiar ground. But I now had a goal. Read that book. Make my brother happy. Climb that mountain! (I think everyone should have an older brother - it keeps one humble.)

(2) I read that book about a year later. It was amazing. And my thoughts went from "read that book" to "so that's what this reading thing is about."

(3) I devoured the Prydain Chronicles and The Little House on the Prairie novels and Anne of Green Gables. Each of these were unique and glorious and I knew I LOVED reading. They were also my first experiences with becoming so involved with a set of characters that I would feel destitute when a series ended. What would I do now??

(4) So, I asked my older brother what I should read next. He mailed me a long list of fantasy novels. This started my saving up of my allowance to buy the next book. And the place that I started, the place that made sure I was a fantasy addict for the rest of my life, was Dragonlance. Dragons of Autumn Twilight by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman.

What is it about that (or those) book(s) that caused you to feel this way?

The magic! The epic adventure! The mystery! The suspense! The immersion into an entire world with history and myth and religion and races of people and geography... But I actually know the exact moment in this book, which stretched to include this entire genre, when there was no turning back. The moment when I met Tasslehoff Burrfoot. Do you know a kender? Depending on now you answer this question, you either know exactly what I'm talking about, or you are missing out on something very special. 

Oh Tass. How I love you!!
And just for fun, if you are able to, post a picture of what you looked like when this important event happened!
This is me at almost 11 (with my baby sister) and is the closest guess I have to how old I was when I got my hands on Dragons of Autumn Twilight.


  1. I think it was "Where the Sidewalk Ends" by Shel Silverstein. I was about 8. But let me tell you, his photo on the back of the book was creepy. I wouldn't have wanted to meet him! :)

  2. There is an award waiting for you on my blog :-) Congrats!!!

  3. awwww fun post!!!

    books really change lives.

  4. I have 1 book that stands out when I think of my whole childhood, because first it was read to me and after that I kept rereading ;)

    It's The Incredible Journey by Sheila Burnford. I posted about it on Graasland.

    I think I read The Little House on the Prairy series a bit later. Started when I was ill (the flu or something) and couldn't stop until I had read them all. Poor mommy, lugging them all from the library ;)