I’m not much of an avid reader when I was growing up. I would just read the required readings in school. The love for reading wasn’t instilled among us siblings. Our cousins have tons of books and I was amazed how much they have read. Both our parents are not that keen in books collection, usually they would read magazines and newspapers. At some point, we would borrow books such as R. L. Stine’s Goosebumps and some Sweet Valley High from our cousins. At most, we would read at a very slow pace and the books took longer to finish. We would read our elder cousin’s collection of Archie’s and that’s about it. Later on, she would lend us the Harry Potter series and I was able to read the entire series later on bit by bit. I could not find enough time to read in college because there are too many readings for the courses we’re taking up. I would borrow some books from the library and end up not reading them, but my sister was able to read those titles such as John Grisham’s novels. I like exploring books in the library, that was a place where I could pick up a title and read some chapters during my break time. Somehow that was an opportunity to read. Several times, I picked up Gabriel Garcia Marquez’ One Hundred Years of Solitude but until now I was not able to read the novel but we do have a copy now at home. I finished his The Chronicle of a Death Foretold as a required book review in Lit class as well as Shakespeare’s Tempest.
My journey in finding good books to read after being immersed into the fiction and fantasy world grew. After exploring the young adult series novels like Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight series, Cassandra Clare’s shadowhunter’s series, reading some Geronimo Stilton, The Diary of a Wimpy Kid and other books we borrowed from our niece, I began to explore more titles. I have read some literary works and different genres of Asian, European, and American authors and it was fun how I was taken to the different worlds and experiences of the authors. I have read Khaled Hosseini’s The Kite Runner, Roy Arundhati’s The God of Small things (as recommendation by a professor in college), The Little Prince, The Curious Incident of the Dog in Nighttime, some detective/crime novels, the books of Neil Gaiman, Jostein Gaarder, David Sedaris, Terry Pratchett, John Grisham’s Innocent Man, etc. I told myself that I’d like to read some non-fiction books too. Then we found books by Malcolm Gladwell, titles like Finding the Next Starbucks, Lexus and the Olive Tree, the Dollar Meltdown, and Falling Leaves. This time we have filled many bookshelves. My dad would accompany us to our local bookstores and attend book fairs, then fast enough our collection grew. He encouraged us to buy books that we like and he chose his own titles too. We were late bloomers in reading but all the same is a fun journey.
Right now, I’m still enjoying Rick Riordan’s adventure novels, Haruki Murakami’s not so bizarre novels, and I have more pending books to read in our shelf. My goal this December is to finish the books that I’ve started reading but never got to finish. I just finished Buffetology, The Miracle by Michael Schuman, Guns, germs and steel by Jared Diamond which took a long time before I reached the last page. I still need to finish a novel by Giddens called You Are the Apple of My Eyes (already watched the movie) and Ng King Kang’s book called On Board@2359, one of our professor’s books entitled Connect the Dots, another Chinese book and Michael Gerber’s E-Myth, two of Kathy Reich’s titles are all on my current list. Of course, while sorting our shelves, I found more books to add to my immediate list. I hope I could find the time to finish all these.
I enjoy visiting bookstores and because of that, I get new book acquisitions now and then, thus my list is unending. On my previous post years back, I have featured a few book shops that we visit. Just right now, my sister and I are careful in choosing the tiles as there are no more space in our shelves and we’ve become more critical readers. We told ourselves to just read what is worthwhile because there are many enticing titles out there that I’d like to pick up. With the advent of e-books, we also have some titles in this form, though I prefer holding the book and flipping the pages with my hands. I need to increase my space since I still have a lot more titles to go.
Reading does help widen our perspectives, deepen our knowledge, help us reflect and meditate. Somehow our inner voice is awakened when immersed in reading. We’ll develop some realizations and the possibilities become endless.