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Today is my favorite National Holiday. It's Book Lovers Day! In the old days, I learned how to read before I reached 1st grade. "Advanced", I was. I had a thing for comic books. When I learned to read, it opened up a whole new world for me and I developed a deep affinity for the written word. I used to sit in my room and my mom would put on those Hannah Barabara reading records where you followed along and turned the page when it beeped. When I got old enough, my parents bought the Childcraft and World Book Encyclopedias (so showing my age here). I read them constantly, so much so, my mom was concerned I wasn't getting enough outside time.
When I got older, you couldn't keep me out of the library. I loved it when Book Fair came around and was completely overjoyed when our class rotated to work in the school library. My love for books over the years just grew. When I got to high school, I was fortunate enough to have a teacher who expanded our reading repertoire, Mr. Biddle (The Spaghetti Albert at Joe's Inn is named after him). He didn't want us to just look at the recommended reading list, but also put together an obscure one. "Miss Lonelyhearts" by Nathaniel West was my first choice and I wrote a stellar book report on it. This Yankee hat wearing, smokes in pocket, Hunteresque Thompson teacher became the first person who gave me symbolism, satire, and some of my favorite words in the English language. I am saddened to find out he died last year. He was a remarkable teacher. It wasn't until Senior year that I fell in love with Shakespeare, Oscar Wilde and James Joyce. Who needed a boyfriend?
So here i sit today and looking at my collection. I do love the classics from Austen to Nin, to the sarcastic and hilarious David Sedaris, to the dark with Neil Gaiman. If you haven't read Miles Davis' Autobio, I highly recommend it. I love real stories about people, about eras of time forgotten, and I always love a good twist!
So celebrate today by reading to your children, going to the local library (yes, they still exist), curling up in your favorite nook and getting lost in world a book can open you up to. With today's technologies, we must not get away from the fundamentals of reading or the beauty of the way a book's pages feel as we turn a page to get to the next chapter. Encourage your children to read real books, not tablets. Whether you love a mystery, a romance, or what happened in a far away land a long time ago, you can always find a book that suits what adventure you want to go on!
Our Favorite Home Reading Nooks
Hiding away with a good book on a rainy day at home can be divine! Visit our Pinterest Board for some great home nook ideas!
Visit Our Favorite Local Book Shops
We prefer our smaller local book stores that give us great genres and cozy atmosphere that make us feel like we're home.
Chop Suey Books has a great selection, used books, and great readings from local authors.
Fountain Books in Shockoe Slip has a great book club and fantastic staff.
BBGB in Carytown is an inviting children's book store with story time with a book of the month program.
Mongrel may not be the first thought when it comes to books, but they have some unique selections.