Top Ten Tuesday : Bookish Reminiscing

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme where every Tuesday we look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) bookish examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  Top Ten Tuesday (created and hosted by  The Broke and Bookish) is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl and future week’s topics can be found here.  This week’s topic :

Bookish Memories (Share stories of your reading life as a child, events you’ve gone to, books that made an impression on you, noteworthy experiences with books, authors you’ve met, etc. Reminisce with me!)

So, for this week’s theme I thought I’d do a little recap of my reading journey – in a very compressed form!  Here goes:

1. My earliest memory of a book I owned (well two books actually) were a couple of story books.  One was a traditional book of fairytales, Beauty and the Beast, Snow White, etc.  The second book was a book of totally unusual stories that I absolutely loved.  It wasn’t a picture book but there were little sketches every few pages.  I’d never read anything like it and I think that (and the fairytale book) shaped my reading in terms of speculative fiction.  You can’t go wrong with a bit of Grimm (although this isn’t the book from my childhood):

Fairy tales

2. One of my early teachers also had a big influence on my reading.  I was probably aged 8 (or thereabouts).  I wanted to read but didn’t always know what exactly to pick up and she was always giving us suggestions such as the Borrowers, Wizard of Oz and The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe.

3. My Dad’s books made up a lot of my reading, he had lots of collections and I slowly but surely made my way through them.  I was older at this point – early teens perhaps.  So I read a lot of classics during that period.  The Brontes, Jane Austen, Thomas Hardy, a little Dickens, Alexandre Dumas, etc before finally stumbling on a book that I loved and still love in fact.

4. Lord of the Rings.  Wow, did I have a crush on Aragorn?  Oh yes I did.  Another book crush at the time, and you couldn’t really get further apart in terms of style was Rhett Butler from Gone With the Wind.  I devoured that book.

5. By the age of about 19 I was starting to run out of books on my dad’s shelves – well, certainly ones that I was interested in reading.  So I realised my brother had some books.  I don’t think he was a massive reader but he had a bookshelf and so off I went to explore.  Most of his books didn’t really appeal to me although I did return every now and again and read the odd one.  But on my first visit one book really stood out to me.  The Far Pavilions.  The cover appealed so I packed it off into my bag to read on the way to and from work.  I’d been reading it a few days (and loving it) when I overheard a discussion (or argument) between my brother and dad.  Basically my brother was saying he’d bought a book for my dad’s approaching birthday, put it on his shelves and now it was gone. Yeah, the book currently sitting, a little battered in my work bag, crammed in next to the empty wrappers and hairbrush, oh yes, that was the birthday prezzie. Obviously I had to confess – how we laughed.  In fairness, we did actually laugh and it’s a story that stuck with me.

TFP

6. I had a fabulous colleague that I worked with for a number of years called Caroline.  Every time she read a good book she’d bring it in for me to read to see what I felt.  Caroline gave me the Bronze Horseman to read on holiday and I absolutely loved it. In fact I think I’ve probably read all Paullina Simons books as a result (or a lot of them at least)!  Caroline’s sister also got me hooked onto the Outlander (known as Cross Stitch when released in the UK).  That was another holiday read that I devoured on holiday in Cornwall – I actually went in search of a bookstore so I could buy the second in series because I couldn’t wait until I got home to read the next instalment.

7. Two further influences.  My husband – who set up my blog in the first place. Long story short I was keeping a book diary on my laptop and it was deleted by accident so along came ‘Lynnsbooks”.  Secondly, my OH bought me my first kindle.  I wasn’t very impressed at the time and was stubbornly determined to not use it, then I discovered how easily I could have books at my disposal within minutes, I could take hundreds of books on holiday and still have room for clothes in the suitcase.  My kindle was backlit.  I could made notes.  So many things. Well, consider me a convert. I still love actual physical books but the kindle wins out for most my reading these days.

8. Leading on from there was one of the earliest blogs I can recall interacting with which was The Little Red Reviewer.  So many great books and other blogs came my way as a result of that blog not to mention readalongs and taking part in other reading events.  I still take part in the Vintage Sci-fi event that was originally created by the LRR and undoubtedly it took my SFF reading in a whole new direction. To those who recommend great books – I salute you.

9.  Another blogger who influenced me a lot was Wondrous Reads. I met the host of WR in a bookstore and we got talking about books, we had such a lot to say we started meeting and exchanging recommendations regularly.  Those were some very good times.  We live many miles apart now so rarely meet up – especially with all the Covid restrictions over the past couple of years – but we will get together again eventually I’m sure.  In the meantime – I Am Legend – that is all.

IamLegend

I will leave the 10th spot free for you to tell me a story about your reading influences.