Reading is a lifelong passion

Reading is a lifelong passion

7 20 17

By Misty Fritz/The Write Team

I’ve always been a voracious reader, starting from a young age. As my mom tells it, I was about four years old (I hadn’t yet started kindergarten), when a friend of hers was listening to me read one of the Little Golden Books. I was reading it word for word, so she thought I had memorized it from hearing it so much. Mom told her I hadn’t heard it that much, so her friend handed me the TV Guide, opened it to a page, and had me read something from it. I struggled a little, but not that much considering my age and not having actually been taught. That was only the beginning.

Over the years, I read a lot, and I read quickly. I know my mom timed me more than once, simply because she was astounded by how fast I’d finish a book and move on to the next one. In high school and college, it wasn’t unusual for me to go through a book a day. I’ll admit that in the last few years my pace has slowed considerably, but the July 4 weekend was an exception — I read four and a half books, totaling about 1,400 pages, in the span of about four days.

Other than my pets, my books were — and are — my most prized possessions. My collection numbered in the hundreds at last count, and though I do go through it and cull it occasionally (usually to donate to Gillespie Public Library’s book sale, which is my favorite event of the year), that’s a monumentally difficult task for me. And physical books are what it’s all about for me. My eyes don’t care for ebooks, and I just can’t concentrate on audiobooks enough to get enjoyment out of them. Besides, ebooks and audiobooks don’t have that delightful paper scent.

I read mostly fiction, in a variety of genres — fantasy, young adult, and, yes, romance. I rarely re-read books, though I have read The Diary of Anne Frank something like 15 times, starting in the second grade; that book jump-started my interest in Holocaust studies. Lately, I’ve been reading a lot of LGBTQ+ fiction, as some acquaintances of mine started an indie press focused on that three years ago (their anniversary is this weekend, actually), and I’ve been reading many of the excellent books they’ve published. If you’re wondering, I’m currently reading Rick Riordan’s Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard, Book One: The Sword of Summer, on the urging of a friend who is certain I’ll love it (so far, she’s right).

I don’t know if I really have a point to this column, other than that I have always loved books and am always looking for recommendations (even though my Amazon “saved for later” cart is a never-ending list of books, and my to-be-read pile is massive).

Oh, wait, I do have a bit of a soapbox: if you enjoy a book you read, especially if it’s by an indie author, make sure to review it on sites like Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and so on, to help others find and enjoy it! Even just a sentence or two can make a difference, because more reviews usually means more visibility, especially on sites like Amazon, where the algorithm favors books with at least 50 reviews.