I Actually Read a Book

Posted on June 9, 2011

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See, this is not a common occurrence for me. I’m a movie geek, not a bookworm. Not that one has to be defined by one label or the other (or another), but reading’s never really been my “thing.” Ya know, a really big interest. I read blogs and interviews and forums and web articles and magazines occasionally. But magazines are really just doctor/dentist office waiting room reads.

I used to read. Back in school, when I was required to. And on occasion I even read books just for fun. But when I went to college, I was so overwhelmed with classes and the tiny bit of social life that I clung to, that reading just fell by the wayside. And when I graduated from college, I fell into TV/movie mode. After missing out on current events, news, my favorite TV shows, and every movie to come out in theaters or DVD, I deemed myself worthy of some serious catch-up time with the tube.

And then I finally read a book. But more on that later.

Part of the reason I stopped reading was out of some kind of stupid social frustration. In one word, I summarize it as competition. Every person I know seems to be a speed reader. I let a coworker borrow a book last summer. She finished it and the other 2 books in the trilogy in less than a month. Another coworker lines her 5-shelf bookshelves (3 of them) with books. Oh, don’t forget about MORE of her books in storage. Then there’s my sister, who’s read all of the Gregory Maguire, Sherlock Holmes, and Harry Potter collections. And so on. I had friends in junior high who were finishing books in days or just a single week. I could never keep up with everybody. Eventually, I got sick of feeling like I couldn’t keep up. Apparently everyone had the ability to read and comprehend quickly. And well, that’s never been my story. Ever.

So last summer, I decided to break the habit (of not reading). Finishing a book became my next issue. I started a great book, only to finish the first 8 chapters and put the book down forever. So I continued to regularly read online and lay back on the paperbacks.

Last month, I saw the movie Something Borrowed. Despite the low reviews, I felt inclined to see it because the trailer had already convinced me that I was going to LOVE it. And ironically enough, I really enjoyed the film. In fact, I liked it so much, I ended up seeing it twice, the second time with my sister. In between the first and second viewings, I was reading online (of course) about the books that inspired the movie. There were a lot of great reviews on the books, and I was curious to see how much the movie had diverted from the original story line from the book. I caved, bought Emily Giffin’s book, hoping I would somehow will myself into reading it. I’ve always despised women who are addicted to romance novels, and knew if this was anything like a romance novel, I would either keep it a secret or stop reading.

Turns out it wasn’t so much a romance novel. *Breathes sigh of relief* Yes, there is some romance, and yes, it is considered a novel, but in the end, the best summary of the book is calling it a story on friendship, plain and simple. And I finished it last night. The weird and best part of it all was the strange feeling of accomplishment. I haven’t had that feeling in such a long time, that I didn’t know how to react when I felt it.

It feels good. In fact, I just ordered the second book in the series.

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