I used to love to visit the Topsfield Town Library, back when borrowing stacks of books felt like a story shopping spree. Now, more than half of the rooms in our house have a shelf, a pile, or a box of books in them. Some books are just for security, rarely touched but still kept close. Others are rippled from supporting the evening tea.
When it comes to books, I’m not as good at finishing as I am at choosing, and those I do finish, I still don’t want to stop seeing. I think that’s why I read three or so at once – I never want a book to end.
The books you read become your book-self, that grand imagination-sized world that your mind travels to on words.
My friends have their own gypsy reading style. One is vigilant about patronizing her library, rarely buying but respectfully borrowing instead. Someone else I know is religious about not starting another book until she is finished with the book in her hands.
Asking a friend what they are reading can be a great way to understand the season she is in – it’s as simple as that. There are reasons that her favorite book this year is the same one that someone recommended a while ago, but it never trapped her interest – until it did. Now it’s taken up residence in her oversized purse. It might be cool to find out why.
As questions go, What are you reading is a friendlier question than What’s your favorite book. A favorite from ten years ago may have a lot of meaning to us, but it may not fit who we’ve become. Also, people feel pressured to give the name of their favorite book because they can’t always explain why they loved it, or even if they love it still.
If you like to read in fits and starts, your books likely reflect a mood or a passion, or they keep you company during those times when people can’t reach you the same way. Talking about books is sometimes a great way to say things between friends that saying the thing just doesn’t do justice.
Here are some great reads, according to my friends, in no order at all. Enjoy!
- Between a Rock and a Hard Place, Aaron Ralston
- One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp
- Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers
- The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls
- The Pull of the Moon by Elizabeth Berg
- The Spiritual Man by Watchman Nee
- You Are Special by Max Lucado
- The Art of Hearing Heartbeats by Jan-Phillip Sender
Did you miss a question or two in the series? Just head over to the main topic page for #CultivateCourageous.