Since this is my first blog post under the #MyFriendAlexa blogathon, and as I had mentioned under my #ThemeReveal post, it had to start with me. In this blog I will talk about my journey as a reader, when did I start and everything after that.
Reading books and loving them came naturally to me. I started reading and collecting books at a very young age of around 7 to 8 years. Being raised in a foreign land, at that time, we had storybooks as a part of our English literature curriculum. (A concept I see now being adopted in India.) So it was from that time that I started getting interested in books and reading more and more kid books, the 1st one being “The shoemaker and the Elves”
My school had a fabulous library and by the time I was 10, Sweet Valley, Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys were in crazy demand amongst all readers in school. I was completely in to Sweet Valley series and use to compete with fellow classmates on who read which book from the series and how quickly did one finish.
Reading comics was also fun at that time and hands down, Archie’s was my, in fact everyone’s favorite. (Even after nearly 2.5 decades, it’s still my favorite) I use to visit a small bookstore to buy comic books and we friends use to then read and exchange what we bought. I had a friend who was a hoarder for Archie’s comics and I use to always discuss new comic books with him.
Then came a phase of more serious reading. I know, people think that girls love reading “Mills and Boons” but count me out. I have never been a fan of such romantic damsel in distress kind of books. I started off with suspense and murder mysteries. In my 1st year of junior college, I had gobbled down all of Sidney Sheldon books and went on to reading Daniel Steel. I started expanding my horizon to various genres of books but cliché love stories never won my attention.
I started exploring more and more authors and visited the “Fountain” area of South Mumbai. The Mecca of book lovers in Mumbai, where rows and rows of booksellers adorn the street for book worshipers. These vendors were reader’s source of cheap and discounted books, albeit at times duplicate books too. I can still spend hours and hours on this street looking for books but now the competition is so tight between these book sellers and online sellers, and with its superb discounts, many readers now prefer buying books online as they have the surety of it being original.
Amazon is now my one stop destination for books and my cart is loaded with nearly 150 plus books with 2 to 3 books being ordered every fortnight. I read more of classic, must reads, historical fiction and good women authored books. And if I love any books, I even research and read about the author.
I have always been a collector of books. From age 8 till we shifted to India, I got all my books back with me, which I had collected. Then came a time when I started a library membership but never liked the idea of returning the books that I really enjoyed reading. So I got back to buying and collecting books. This was during my collage days and from then till now, nearly 18 years, I am on a spree to collect and read more books. I am in a race with my own self to get my hands on as many interesting and good books as I can.
My bookshelf is overflowing. I am running out of place to store my books and even my mom has refused to keep anymore books for me fearing the pile and pile of books I will send over to her house, though she still has half of my collage days collection at her home.
My husband, just to irk me, at times, says that one day when I go for a long stay at my moms, he is going to sell off all my books and make good money out of it. But at the same time, gifts me books for anniversaries and birthdays.
The best thing this life has given me, of course after my family, is my fervor for books. The ardor has mounted over the years. Now I am trying to raise readers and made my kids be-friend books from an early age. When I see my daughter reading books on her own at the age of 6, I get a feeling of exultation. I feel my life has come a full circle when I see the cycle of my reading being taken over by my children now.
One day, I wish for my kids to read the books that I have read. I leave small marks and comments or highlight parts which I really liked and would want my kids to read and ponder up on when they get their hands on my books. My bookshelf is my place of worship where I stand in front of these books, adore them, touch them and smell the pages as I go back into their stories.
So this was about me. Do let me know if you love to read or not and if yes what sorts of books do you read? I can never stop talking about books, who knows, we could become book buddies.
With this post I am taking my blog to the next level with Blogchatter’s #MyFriendAlexa and you can find all my posts in this series under the hashtags of #mummatalkswrites on all social media platforms.
16 replies on “Books and me – a friendship of over 3 decades and a life time to go”
Reading ones past towards a brilliant future… keep blogging, keep writing and keep everyone keen with your thoughts…. Happy Writing Hansa… all the very best…. luck u don’t need coz we are lucky to have u writing…
Such a wonderful journey Hansa. You’ve been a great blogging buddy for me and Ive started relying on you for your book suggestions as well. Felt good to know about your never ending love of books and where & how it all started… Keep reading and writing!!
wow..I found so many similarities in my reading taste and what I understood form your blog. Talking about Mills and Boons ,so I didn’t know about it until I watched a TV show and un that they mentioned about it. I was never into romantic books. To me, suspense thriller comes as a first love. Archie’s, Nancy Drew , and later Agatha Christie are some go my favorites.
i used to be a book worm long ago but I haven’t managed to finish a book for a long time. i read daughters of saudi arabia some couple of years ago and that’s it. rest is online. but I love books better.
wowwow! I love your reviews!!
I am not much into reading now, but as a kid I loved story books… Nancy drew was my favorite too! Nice post!
I have been a bibliophile all throughout my life! My daughter is now reading Enid Blyton, someone I loved during her age.
I’m not into reading but at one point I used to be. My favourite author was Mitch Albom and I really loved his book Tuesdays with Morrie. Not sure I liked his other books as much as I liked this one.
Can see so many similarities, have been a voracious reader all my life. Last year we shifted houses and finally got two big Ikea Bookshelves to hold all my books today, it was like a dream come true! though now I don’t have any more shelf space so I guess will have to buy another one!
Wow… would love to see ur collection
Have been a bookworm all my life. Can see so many similarities with you, my house is overflowing with books and my college collection is at my parent’s house
Love your journey Hansa and good to know about your love for books. Even my bookshelf is also overflowing and I really dont know where to store my books now. I am obsessed to the habit of smelling books. I can see there are so many similarities between you and me.
Books open a world of imagination! I’m still waiting to climb the Magic Faraway Tree and visit one of the lands of clouds!
Ohh! I have grown up reading all of the same books. Only before Sweet Valley started, there was an entire Enid Blyton episode. Loved reading this post.
Oh goodness! I started with Enid Blyton, flew through R. K. Narayan, had a really long bout of Agatha Christie, dabbled a bit in Arthur Conan Doyle, found a second home at Hogwarts with J. K. Rowling, enjoyed a little P. G. Wodehouse… and now, it’s just calm and peaceful, because work occupies so much of my time that I just never get the peace to sit and read! If I did have time, I am sure I would have had to get another library room 😂
Just sooo jealous of you of having the option of going out to the Fountain in Mumbai. There’s nothing more peaceful than being in a sea of books… and nothing replaces the feeling of actually holding onto a book, buying it, and then just reading it and knowing that it will be with me forever and ever!
Oh yes nothing like waking in the sea of books at Fountain Mumbai. Squeeze in some time for books, life can never be too busy to not read a good book.