Friday, June 15, 2007

RGBP Friday Five: Books, books and more books!

As long as I have a book to read I'm happy. There is always one "emergency book" stashed in my car and my purse. Just in case I'm ever stuck in a snow storm, or in an emergency room. I got caught without reading material twice in such circumstances, and it was so painful each time that I learned that I need this more than I need lipstick in my bag. The first time was in the ER with a two-year old who had an open fracture of his hand. On Christmas Eve. The hand surgeon was (where else) in surgery, so we had to "hang out" in the ER until Crash could be evaluated, and the hand repaired. The only kids book (or any book for that matter) they could scrounge up for us was the classic (and apparently it is a classic, but not one I'd known or would come to love) Scuffy the Tugboat. I read it over and over and over again to my drugged pre-schooler. I was ready to scream by the end, or demand the same drugs they were giving him!

1. Fiction what kind, detective novels, historical stuff, thrillers, romance????
Truth? Science fiction and period mysteries. A favorite SF series is about Miles Vorkosigan, who is short and smart. I can relate.

2. When you get a really good book do you read it all in one chunk or savour it slowly?
I used to down it in one go, but of late have enjoyed savoring them.

3. Is there a book you keep returning to and why?
Not so much any one, but I do know that when I'm stressed I tend to re-read fiction that I've enjoyed in the past.

4. Apart from the Bible which non-fiction book has influenced you the most?
Two? One fiction, one not. In This House of Brede, by Rumer Goden and Lady with a Spear, the biography of marine biologist Eugenie Clark.

5. Describe a perfect place to read. ( could be anywhere!!!)
Up a tree! My favorite reading tree is in the photo. It's an enormous beech tree that has a cleft shaped like an easy chair. I bring a book, a thermos of iced tea and a towel (to pad the branch), and climb up into the cool, rustling branches for an afternoon's read. Last time I took my camera up with me. Alas the tree is too far from my home base to be a regular reading spot, but it is downright perfect. Particularly since no one can find me once I'm up there!


  1. how wonderful that tree looks- as for the ER tale- hmm I can still remember the text of" Wheels" read to my eldest over and over 24 years later...arrghh

  2. Oh yes...I too have to have emergency books, bag, vestry...anywhere I might get stuck!The trouble is that those tend to get dipped into, as if I start reading them properly then they have to come inside, and I might be stuck in a hideous bookless crisis...
    And also, Oh yes re In this House of Brede...Brede itself (which has no Abbey really) is close to where i grew up, but that's not why I read and re-read the book in my teens, and love to return to it still. Apart from anything else, somewhere in there lurks my most favourite of comfort quotes (from Cloud of Unknowing, I think)
    "Not what thou art, nor what thou has been, but what thou wouldst be beholdest God in his mercy".
    Thank you for reminding me of it.x

  3. Sallly - ten years out the memory is pretty vivid, sounds like I'll be 90 and still cringing when I hear the word tugboat.

    Kathryn - I love the description of "a hideous bookless crisis" - I twitch just thinking of being caught without.

    I've been going back to that book since teen days, too. It reminds me that we can live with each other, warts, pain and all. When I was widowed in my late 20s I went back to it and found encouragement in Phillipa's pain. It's nice to know someone else re-reads it!

  4. Oh! Another Rumer Godden fan... I love that book. I love Rumer! What lyrical, gorgeous, lush writing... lush in images just as much as in words, for sometimes her words can be very spare and still intensely rich. Amazing stuff...

    Your story about finding the ER remnant moved me incredibly, BTW. In the neat way the universe works, it was something I needed to read... thank you for being an instrument of grace! :-)

  5. Rev. Sharon...I'm glad the grace spilled over!

    and to have found another fan of Rumer...spare and lush both is a good description.