Friday, May 07, 2010

Just a little book talk

I was re-reading a favorite book recently when I came across the following quote...

What I mean by reading is not skimming, 
not being able to say as the world saith, 
"Oh, yes, I've read that!,"
but reading again and again, in all sorts of moods,
with an increase of delight every time, 
till the thing read has become
a part of your system and goes forth 
along with you to meet 
any new experience you may have.
C. E. Montague
A Writer's Notes on His Trade

Yes!  I can so relate with that quote.  I love to re-read favorite books, especially during times of illness or stress.  They are like visiting an old friend or a home which was warm and cozy, offering special comfort in the midst of a storm.

I suppose that is why most of my books I tend to read over and over again fall under three categories... either the nonfiction books I keep in my quiet time basket, books which inspire me to decorate or cook or garden or craft, or favorite works of fiction which have the tendency to take me to another place I have visited before but long to return to... even if just for those few moments I can get away to curl up on the sofa and read.

The above quote came from Victoria's Intimate Home; Creating a Private World.  There are so many pictures in that book which have inspired me in my own attempts of creating a look of peace and quiet and quaintness in my home.  It is one I often keep in a place it can easily be picked up and perused when a quiet moment is desired.  I often pull such a decorating book... or gardening book... or cookbook off the shelf... rarely a planned read but one which is desired or needed at the time.

As mentioned earlier, my reading this month is quite eclectic.  That is mostly because of the books I have stacked on the coffeetable, each wanting my attention.  Among them is a "new to me" biography of Ravi Zacharias called Walking From East to West, a fiction book Leota's Garden by Francine Rivers (which I had planned to read last year and didn't get to it), Long Journey Home by Os Guinness (begun last month and read a little at a time), Wonder O' The Wind  (W. Phillip Keller's amazing autobiography I first read many years ago), and my current book I'm carrying with me in purse and automobile... Home Economics, a series of essays by Wendell Berry.  How many will actually get read this month?  Hmmmm... that is the question, isn't it.

One more book found its' way to me this week, one which I will review soon.  In the mailbox was a manila package (I just love those) from Colorado containing Sarah Clarkson's new book, Read For the Heart: Whole Books for Wholehearted Families.  Sally had their office assistant send it to me before she left for Europe with Joy (I tried to go along in their luggage but alas, must be content with hellos sent via the Internet).  :)

Anyhoo, circumstances found me sitting at my favorite coffee-shop near campus... nurturing a cup of coffee... for over two hours... waiting for a ride home with my husband.  I took Sarah's book with me and Stephanie's words were whispering in my ear... those she had shared over the phone upon her reading of the first few chapters.

I adore books about books, especially those written by people I have a strong affection for... and find myself in agreement with as I read each page.  Reading Sarah's book almost made the long wait painless.  At the least, it helped time pass more quickly than it would have without it.  More about it later...

We will see if I have bitten off more reading material than can be read in May... especially as it is another month with much to do outside.  Come late June through August, I stay inside more as I cannot handle heat and humidity so one must do as much work as possible before then.

However, I'm certain before May is over, I will find even more titles coming my way... each clamoring for immediate attention in addition to the others waiting for further summer reading.  Perhaps if I give up cooking, gardening, lawnwork, laundry, and cleaning house...


Vee said...

Books on books...I'm sure that I'd love them, too, since I love reading what you have to say about books. The two that you mentioned in comments are the very two that I will request tomorrow. Blogging can wait. ;D

Mrs.Rabe said...

I have been lacking reading time lately...I need to make it a priority, even if it means not checking all my favorite blogs everyday!

Thanks for the quote and your thoughts!

Anonymous said...

Oh yes! I understand completely. Whenever I feel the world closing in on me, I always reread my childhood favorites (The Moffats, Anne of Green Gables and the Betsy-Tacy books). They take me back to carefree days and then I feel ready to face the world again.


Anonymous said...

Home Economics is actually the first book I ever read by Wendell Berry. Truly he is one of my (and my husband's) favorites. I love his essays, his fiction and his poetry. My very favorite of his so far is Jayber Crow. Enjoy!


Cheryl (Copper's Wife) said...

I love your opening quote!

matty said...

No house is properly dressed without good books! Yours must be lovely!

Anonymous said...

I just got Sarah's book in the mail this week as well - and promptly went on Amazon to start collecting the Brambly Hedge books, due to what she'd said. I'm in my 40's & have no kids, but I LOVE BOOKS! I am a huge rereader as well - the Betsy-Tacy books, Jane of Lantern Hill, The Blue Castle (both by LM Montgomery), and now the Miss Read books, are my go-to's for comfort reading.

The quote was spot-on!

Stephen King, who is a good writer, but I can't handle much of anything he writes, wrote a book on writing which is very good. He carries books with him everywhere, and if he's in line, he's reading. Sometimes not quite practical, but I can get a page or 2 done that way myself!

-Connie in San Diego

Anonymous said...

To Connie in San Diego, I love The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery!

Friend Debra

Heather L. said...

I loved Walking from East to West and I can't wait until our library gets Sarah's book.