When my life fell apart nearly four years ago, I lost my ability to concentrate. I was always a voracious reader. My husband used to say I would read anything, even the toilet paper wrapper. He was right. I did read everything in sight. My eyes were drawn to words. Imagine my dismay when I could not read a full sentence and comprehend.
Through these last years, I have read. I have even read a book or two, every now and then. Mostly my reading has been the newspaper, Facebook posts, articles in Redbook and O Magazines, and the tabloid headlines in the grocery store check out lines. I tried to join a book club at the library, but reading a book a month was exhausting. I compared that with my two-book-club-a-month life in Arizona, and thought I might be done.
Fast forward, and… I have my mojo back! I have read at least fourteen books this summer. The “at least” are those I remember. It began in the spring, after I heard her speak locally, I read Jill McCorkle’s book Life After Life, and then when I was in Wisconsin my reading picked up, and has not wavered. I read the two Heaven books, Proof of, and Is for Real, Middlesex, which was the book Barbra Streisand’s character was reading to her son in the movie, Guilt Trip. I read a great book by Jeffery Archer, of which I cannot remember the name, but was about the guy who was thought to be the first to climb Mr. Everest, before Sir Edmund Hilary. I read a few of the Sweet Potato Queens books by Jill Connor Browne, which are a hoot. I read Southern Fried Divorce by Jill’s sister, Judy Connor, also funny and touching. I read a V.I. Warshawski book, and Jeannette Walls’ most recent novel.
Then I got on a Southern writer kick, and I have read several by Clyde Edgerton, who is a fabulous author, a Mary Kay Andrews book, and Fannie Flagg’s latest, The All-Girls Filling Station’s Last Reunion. I love me some Fannie Flagg. My current read is by Adriana Trigiani. I have read all her other books, and I love that she was a college roommate of one of my friends here in Winston.
There are a lot of really good books out there, and Southern writers are amongst the best of authors. I am smitten. I can’t afford to buy the books, even from Amazon.com, these days, but we have a fabulous public library, and if I am patient, I can get pretty much any book I want to read. We have Edward McKay’s here and in Greensboro. There, many desirable used books are available.
So, this summer, I have laughed until I cried, just plain cried, and loved every word I have read. As paraphrased from a Barnes and Nobles tote…when I have any money I buy books, and if I have any left, I buy food. It’s nice to be back.