Yes, I am a bookworm. Here is the question: how did you first come across the books you read. There are multiple ways that has happened. Let me give some examples below: some are books I didn’t like.
This was one of the things I disliked the most about high school and college. There is an easy chance not to like them- for one thing, you are not able to read at your own pace and for certain books, you end up being close-minded to. What are some of those required books?
- Lord of the Flies
- Of Mice and Men
- The Great Gatsby
- Romeo and Juliet
- Julius Caesar
- Taming of the Shrew
- And Then There Was None
- Uncle Tom’s Cabin
Well, as you may notice—-most of them are sad or tragic stories. In high school, I was close-minded to tragedies especially towards Shakespeare. Only just a select few of the required books were loved or liked: Taming of the Shrew, And Then There Was None, Illiad and Odyssey. While by the time I read Uncle Tom’s Cabin, I already fell in love with tragedies: yes I loved Uncle Tom as a character, but didn’t like the story.
Yes, this is true. Some books were read because of certain musicals. If I had literally just seen some of these books on the shelf, they would easily be ignored. The perfect example is Les Misérables- that unabridged book is over 1000 pages, which is why it is something that could be walked away. My love for Les Mis led me to wanting to read future books.
Some books I read were recommended either by my family or a bookstore. Due to Les Mis, my dad recommended Tale of Two Cities. Tale of Two Cities happens during the French Revolution, which was before Les Mis happened. Due to loving Tale of Two Cities, my dad recommended Great Expectations. One semester in Spanish, we did a project, where I choose to do it on Don Quixote after my dad recommended it. Something still confuses me about that book: it is a tragicomedy.
What about bookstores? Park Road Books is really talented at recommending books. The best example is A Darker Shade of Magic, the first of the Shades of Magic series. They also recommend Spinning Silver- this is the only retelling I read: this is based off of Rumplestelskin (you probably know what I am talking about). I do get nervous with retellings- that wasn’t the case for Spinning Silver- based on the summary, I knew it was very original.
This is where I can include another independent bookstore- Malaprops. You are sitting at this shelf with books wrapped up, and all you see are adjectives- you choose the book based on the wrappings.
Due to Les Mis, a number of other classics were books I choose myself. I wanted to read Oliver Twist because that story was what inspired the Les Mis musical. Due to loving Les Mis, I discovered Hunchback of Notre Dame- another Victor Hugo book.
A lot of Dickens books were starting to be read because of my love for A Christmas Carol. I grew up on the George C. Scott movie- yes, two Dickens’ books were recommended due to Les Mis. However, the others in someways got inspired by the first book as well as loving Tale of Two Cities and Great Expectations. Nicholas Nickleby, David Copperfield, Bleak House, and Hard Times I choose to read due to just seeing them on the shelf. One day in the bookstore, I did not know what classic to buy: that is how I found Bleak House and Hard Times.
Some of the other books were just found on the shelf. Uprooted, Land of Stories, Avalon, and Sister’s Grimm are examples of that. I think that also applies to Lord of the Rings. I literally think J.K Rowling drew inspiration for Harry Potter from Lord of the Rings. I do think I also just saw Percy Jackson on the shelf: love Greek Mythology after all.
Why am I saying this? Some books wouldn’t have been discovered if I didn’t watch the movies. Harry Potter, Narnia, and Princess Bride were first discovered by movies alone. A Christmas Carol fits this as well- watching the George C. Scott movie over the Holidays is a family tradition.
So how do you discover the books you love?