Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Joys of Reading

I am a big fan of reading book series. I got hooked on this concept as a girl, reading stories about the Bobbsey Twins, Trixie Belden, Nancy Drew, Anne of Green Gables; the Little House books, Perry Mason mysteries, Agatha Christie mysteries (starring both Hercule Poirot and Miss Jane Marple), the Chronicles of Narnia and Tolkien's Lord of the Rings series, etc. I read all of the Boxcar Children books to my son. And in adult years I've read all of James Clavell's works, Jan Karon's Mitford series, the Left Behind books, the Harry Potter series, all of James Herriot's tales, and have reread countless times most of the beloved series of my youth.

I love getting to know the characters and hearing how they grow and change over an extended period of time. They become friends with whom I am eager to continue a relationship. I'm a sucker for sequels in the movies, too, although I'm often disappointed in the long run with cinematic Part Twos and Threes.

In the summer of 2007, while visiting my folks back in the states, my mom gave me a paperback she had finished reading called The Cat Who Went into the Closet by Lilian Jackson Braun. Presto! I was hooked on yet another wonderful series of stories, all about one Chicago journalist, his pet Siamese cats and the mysteries they solve first in Chicagoland, and later while living up in a forested area "400 miles north of everywhere" in the boondocks (probably of Minnesota, Wisconsin or Michigan--it is never entirely clear which state).

The story my mother had was smack dab in the middle of the series, so I decided to slowly order all the rest from, and have spent the last 15 mos. reading them all in chronological order. They're wonderful; comical, intriguing, and very entertaining! L.J.Braun cranks out a new one every few months and I've enjoyed them all. If you love cats and/or mysteries, I heartily recommend The Cat Who... series!

Does anyone out there have a book series they recommend??


karen said...

Sal - I still don't have the hang of this "blog" business! I posted a comment, but it went on the photo page. I'm not sure if you check old blogs, so here it is again. Also - it came up as anonymous, so just in case I stuff up this one too - this is Karen!

Hey Sal - Just read your comments on books. I don't have a series to recommend, but I joined a book club a few years ago to try and broaden my outlook on reading. We meet once a month to discuss the book (we are supposed to have) read. Needless to say, sometimes I don't get the book read - but it's fun to meet up and have a coffee (or a wine) and listen to the discussion.

Have you read any of Jane Austen?

Sal said...

Hey Kar'! Thanks for your 'konjyo' in commenting. I appreciate it! (Don't sweat the Anonymous comment; I'll take it off.)

I haven't read Jane Austen, although I'm familiar with the story of Pride and Prejudice (from watching the most recent movie adaptation of it). Actually, I think I would enjoy reading such a sensitive author's work. What other titles of hers do you recommend??

Anonymous said...

My favorite series is The Mitford Series by Jan Karon. I love every one of her books. Check out her website at It is a great website that tells about all of her books and about her next book she is writing set in Ireland. I think you will enjoy the site.

Sal said...

Dear Anonymous,
Yes, I am always eager to read more of Jan Karon's inspired words. Father Tim's faith has helped me reprioritize time and again in the past. I had heard from my mother that a new series was begun, exploring Tim's past, and I will look forward to reading it next.

Thanks for the heads up on Jan Karon's website! I just checked it out and was blessed simply by watching the photo shows of her family and the research trip to Ireland. D.L.Wright's photography of Ireland was wonderful! Such peace expressed. I know that will be captured in Jan's description of it later on.

Thanks for stopping by!

karen said...

Sal - me again. I enjoyed reading Pride and Prejudice (after watching the BBC dramatisation) - and I loved it. Then I read Emma -and loved that too.

The librarian at my school recommended the "Across the Nightingale Floor" series by Lian Hearn (kind of Japanese historical Fantasy.) which was pretty good (not very deep and meaningful, just a pleasant, interesting read)

Sal said...

Hey Karen, thanks for the reminder of Jane Austen's book, Emma. I saw that film with Gwenyth Paltrow as the heroine. Now that I think of it, "P&P" had the same 'funiki' about it, ne. I will look into getting those titles and the series you recommended, too, from Winter is upon us, and I need some good books to curl up with in my futon!