This week the Broke and the Bookish are asking for bookish confessions. I think I already confessed to some of my more egregious book-related actions, like ruining my middle-school library’s copy of For Whom the Bell Tolls by spilling milk on it — but I managed to think up five more.
1. For a long while, I wouldn’t go near the Left Behind series, because as a kid raised to believed the Rapture was real and inevitable, the thought of actually being left behind terrified me. I’m not exaggerating when I say I didn’t go a week in my first twenty years of life without being reminded that the world was doomed to become the province of a psychopath, and my only hope of escaping that fate (to be followed by an eternity in Hell) was church. After escaping from such beliefs, I later read the first book out of curiosity and found it hilariously awful — so much so that I read the entire sixteen book series in the month and a half that followed.
2. Although I’m hostile toward digital readers, I’ll probably wind up buying one within the next five years. My rising Luddite tendecies notwithstanding, my job as a reference assistant often entails helping people with computers, and increasingly their own wireless devices. If touch-screen interfaces are the way of the future, I need to learn to navigate them to function out in the world. Of course, at home I can be as tech-free as I want.
3. Like other readers, I tend to avoid “hot” series on the prinicple that they’re just too popular. This is snobbish, of course, but I don’t feel bad about it. I just don’t myself too seriously on this point, especially since the one time I succumbed to peer pressure and tried a series everyone was nuts about, I found I loved it. I speak, of course, of Harry Potter, which I now re-read once a year.
4. When visiting someone’s home, I tend to look for and then investigate their bookcases. Nothing else (aside from a garden, I suppose) would attact my attention.
5. Although most of the books of my childhood are gone, there are a couple of series from middle school that I absolutely will not give up — California Diaries and Roswell High. I keep them in the same cabinet as my old journals.
6. Once, in my sophomore year of high school, I found a library book that I’d previously lost…on the day that I’d intended to pay for its replacement cost. I decided to pay for the replacement and keep the book, because I loved that book. It was Albert Marrin’s The Airman’s War, and I keep it in the bookcase near my bed.