My parents like to say that my first work was “book.” I personally think this is more family legend than actual fact, because what kind of crazy baby says “book” before “mama” or “dada”? But I suppose it is possible, and I certainly grew up to be a voracious reader. Not like, on a “Time enough at last” level, but I’ve definitely been known to spend entire weekends ignoring everyone and everything in favor of getting really really into a book.
At any given time, I am reading between one and three books, usually only two at a time though. One at night and one for the train to/from work (and lunchtime, except recently I’ve been eating out with colleagues, which is good but I am always a little bummed not to have my extra reading time).
My train book has to be something to keep me interested, something to make the time go by quickly. I alternate between YA cheesetastic (= rereading Twilight) and a more “serious” grown-up book that Amazon suggests for me. I’ve tried non-fiction/humor like Bill Bryson, but it sometimes seems like I should be taking notes. There’s so much interesting information, yet I almost feel like it’s for school somehow. What I need in the morning is a story that grabs my attention, something I want to keep reading, that will make me work hard so the time passes quickly and I can get back to reading! Alternatively, it also makes me look forward to going to work, because I’ll limit myself to only reading the book in the train, so all weekend I am waiting for Monday. Well, not all weekend, but you get the idea . . .
I almost always pick an “old” book to read at night, something I’ve read once or twice (or five or six times) already. If I read something new, I’ll stay up all night wanting to finish it (you know you do it too!). So I pick the familiar stories, dropping off in the middle of sentences, sleeping soundly with the knowledge that my characters will do what I know they’re supposed to do in the end.
Sticking with a familiar book at night helps keep me in the universe of my train book as well. I think once I started rereading two different YA dystopian series at once, and had to stop because I kept confusing the different worlds. I try and vary the genres of my two books, never reading two mysteries at once or two overly romantic books (there is such a thing as too much swooning!).
So, what am I reading right now? My train book is “Dark Places” by Gillian Flynn, and it’s definitely keeping my mind off the commute! My bedtime book is “The Mysterious Benedict Society” by Trenton Lee Stewart, that I’ve read so many times I’ve lost count. It’s written for younger readers, but it has that magic that makes me feel like a young reader again, not like a boring grown-up who shouldn’t be reading stuff like this.
But I’ll be done with both pretty soon, and I love recommendations, so what are you reading?