By Kim enjoying spring in Baltimore
I come from a family of readers. Whether it was The Sun, a case file, or a John le Carre
novel, the written word was present in our everyday life. My grandfather carried the sports page folded in the back pocket of his pants. Dad enjoyed pouring over his case notes with us at dinner, while Mom kept her nose firmly planted in the latest mystery she’d borrowed from the Enoch Pratt Library. I remember the first book I picked out on my own. It was at a tiny bookstore near Lexington Street, in the heart of the downtown shopping district. My Mom was buying a present for a friend and agreed to buy one book for me. I chose a collection of fairytales illustrated by Tasha Tudor. I still have it and read the stories to my own children. It was the beginning of my love affair with Tasha Tudor and also became the first entry in what would become my book list obsession.
For more years than I care to count I have kept a notebook with lists of books that I have either read or wish to read. Several list contain many of the same titles. There was a time – before having children – I categorized my list in very specific genres. Mystery headed the column that included cozy, thriller, procedural, super natural and true crime. Even self-help was broken down to numerous categories. Obviously, I needed a lot of help or at the least, something better to occupy my time. Think of all the books I could have read instead of writing their titles on a list!
The one list I should have worked on, and never did, was that of people who borrowed my books. There are quite a few books I’m sure I will never see again. For the last year I’ve been part of a book club that meets once a month. We’ve read some wonderful stories, many of them I would never have chosen. A few of the books have been on one of my lists and it gives me great satisfaction crossing that title out.
This year I have begun a new journal. It’s really my first official book journal in a fancy notepad and not just some loose leaf paper haphazardly stapled together. I now rate the books I read with stars and leave spaces for comments. I enjoy talking about books and especially enjoy reading blogs such as Dru’s Book Musings. This summer’s goal, at least one of them, is to read the forty books Ramona DeFelice Long recommended on her blog during her forty days of women authors. I am nearly finished reading the nominees for the Agatha Awards to be given at Malice Domestic this year. Two of our own Wickeds, Sherry and Edith, are up for best first novel and best short story.
I leave you now gentle reader as I head out to my sunny porch to put a dent in yet another book, and I would like to know what kind of lists you keep. Do they serve as inspirations or as yet another chore?