Reading lately

I haven’t read very much in the last few years. It seems like it takes a good deal of effort and planning to arrange the time to sit with a book, and now that I have a toddler, it’s even more difficult. Kostya seems to think that if I’m sitting down, my lap is open and I eventually become some sort of jungle gym.

I can probably count on one hand the number of books I’ve read from cover to cover since I got married (not counting non fiction books like gardening, sewing, or advice books). To be honest, it’s really difficult for me to find a fiction book worth reading. I know they’re out there, but looking at the hundreds of books at the library is overwhelming, and 99% are not to my taste. In fact, I used to hate going to the library. Even though the level of commitment is so low, and I can check out a large number of books and bring them back whenever, it was only recently that I was even able to go and choose a book. I started with non fiction – knitting patterns, actually. From there I picked out a few books based on family and friend recommendations. I think I may have finished about half of those.

My tastes are ridiculous and specific, and must match my mood almost exactly, otherwise I’m not interested. At home I am a few to several chapters into a range of books, from The Lord of the Rings to the Harry Potter series to Jasper Fford’s Thursday Next books. I like to listen to Anna Karenina on audiobook.

I like love stories. Deep, edifying, *real* love love stories, not usually the stuff that passes as romance. I like it they talk about God, even if it’s  not a main theme. It’s hard to find books like that.

Of course, by being so picky I miss out on so many good stories, or I put a book down far too early, judging it too quickly based on a single incident or attitude or phrase.

I did find Goodreads, which has been really helpful. I can browse reviews and search by description much better than at my local library, and I can save a list of books that look interesting.

I am in the middle of a book series I was very surprised by. At first I considered it fantasy/adventure, but now that I’m further into it I see that it is foremost a romance. I’ll be honest – I like that. My SIL gave me the first book, Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon, some months ago and it just sat on my shelf. I didn’t pick it up because it’s over 800 pages. I didn’t even know it was just the first of seven books (actually, the eighth comes out next year). So now I’m trapped. I’m only in book three and I can’t get out. I love it and I hate it. I’ve been devouring these books. My emotional response has been so intense it surprised me. I cried at the beginning of book two. Sobbed like a baby. I couldn’t even read the meat of the book – i went from the first few chapters to the last. And then started book three. I think after I get over the initial moments of suspense I will go back and try to get all the details. I’m a sucker for a good love story, but this one hurts my heart.

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