I am a reader. Since I was a wee girlie, I have been found at many a social function with my nose buried in a book. I've never been a snob about what I read -- chick lit, sci fi, fantasy -- I'll read the fluff alongside the more "serious" and "literary" tomes.
But for much of 2006 and 2007, I had felt lost, unable to find a book worthy of my time. I spent plenty on magazines, but I just couldn't read anything more substantial than Entertainment Weekly (one obvious exception being Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows -- but that's more of a phenomenon than a mere book). I told myself it was depression or being pregnant, which kept me from really enjoying books like I used to.
But that was before I joined Paperback Swap. This is not a commercial, but I have to say that this service, where you can swap your unwanted books and get other books in return FOR FREE, is awesome. I joined back in September and decided that I would use it to try out books that sounded interesting but that weren't MUST HAVES that I needed right away.
In just the last few months, I've read:
Fluffy chick-lit, true crime, children's lit (btw, The Golden Compass is really dense. When the New York Times calls your book "challenging," this is not your average kiddie book). I've decided that reading, no matter what it is that I'm reading, is the goal.
Here's what's on my To Be Read shelf (currently stacked on top of the TV):
Right now I'm reading The Annotated Pride & Prejudice. I love Jane Austen, and Pride & Prejudice is my 2nd favorite book (just behind Persuasion). The annotations are really adding to my enjoyment, I have to say. They give insight into how certain words were used at the time of the writing, show illustrations of common items from the time, and point out certain literary devices as they occur. Very cool for the history nerd like me.
If you're interested in signing up for PaperBack Swap, click here: Full disclosure -- I get book credits for each person who signs up. It's free and a good way to get rid of the old books you're never going to reread. It's also a low-cost way to get a head start on that New Year's resolution to read more books!