Ugh… more brain rotting television… Why is there nothing on TV??!!  I have a solution for you… it may be a little crazy, but bear with me.  Ever thought about reading a book?  What a novel (no pun intended) idea.

I’m lucky I grew up in a “reading” household.  My parents read to me as a child. They also encouraged me to love reading.  You could say I have an active imagination so, reading a book and building the characters and their surroundings in my head was the perfect way to exercise my cute little pre-adolescent brain.

My three favorite places as a child? The drugstore, ballet class, and the bookstore.  I spent hours browsing all the books.  We even had an actual “library” in our house.  It was a magical place full of Golden Books, National Geographic, picture books, and novels.

In highschool, I was fortunate enough to attend a school that didn’t ban books- classics!- like Catcher in the Rye and The Bell Jar which were considered too “racy” or “controversial” for students.  I feel fortunate that I had the opportunity (though at the time it felt more like a chore) to experience classic literature.  Who would have thought that I’d be so thankful for all those book reports and essays years later?

Unfortunately, as I’ve gotten older, I’ve devoted less and less time to something I really love.  It becomes difficult to find time to just sit down and crack open a book.  Who am I kidding?  I’ve just started filling my downtime with useless TV shows and meaningless Facebooking and Tweeting.  So, this weekend, when we hit up Barnes and Noble for some bookshelf booty I felt like a kid all over again.

When I told my mom what I’d done this past weekend she was thrilled.  Something she always says to me is, “Reading will make you a better writer!”  She’s absolutely right… as usual.

Books are a very inexpensive way to make yourself more interesting.  Not all of us have the opportunity, let alone the resources, to travel all over the world and none of us can travel back in time (unless you’re Marty McFly).  For less than a movie ticket, you can be transported to a foreign land or different century.  Not to mention all the intellectual cuties who hang out in bookstores.

Having trouble figuring out where to start?  Here are a few books that stick out in my mind as “must reads” or at least books that I really enjoyed.  (To list them all could take forever).

  1. Gone with the Wind by  Margaret Mitchell – This may take you about a month to read, but talk about a classic! Rhett Butler is the original Mr. Big.
  2. Trading Up by Candace Bushnell (yes, the same woman who wrote Sex and the City)
  3. The Help by Kathryn Stockett – Cried my eyes out. Such a great book. Read it before they ruin it on the big screen.
  4. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee – Another banned book in most schools, but incredibly touching.
  5. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

So, next time you are debating whether to sit through another episode of Kourtney and Kim Take New York or The Jersey Shore (which is lesser of two evils?), perhaps you’ll just hit “power” and pick up a book instead.

The End.



images via Colour Lovers