I read, probably (definitely) too much for my own good. When I am in school, a good deal of my brain power is spent wondering whether I can sneak a book under my desk. This has, understandably, gained me a reputation as nerd among my classmates and family, but popular culture now says nerds are cool, so I’m safe. Reading is definitely sexy.
It’s half term right now, and I know that I have spent a worrying proportion of it escaping from my friends and family trying to find a quiet place to read. Recently, however, I’ve been reading more than Harry Potter and my ever-beloved Terry Pratchett. For the second time I’ve tried to read the classics that my book mad older sister and English teacher have passionately recommended to me, and I don’t know, this time round it clicked. Not everything, I grant you, but in the past couple of weeks I have devoured my first Woolf, tried George Eliot and read Jane Austen all over again.
It’s just something about another world and the feel of ink upon my questing eyeballs, where no-one can judge me and and I can think whatever I want to think. I’ve loved it since I was small. I like to learn subconsciously and to get that obscure reference or even make some of my own. I like it when you can talk anxiously about a book character with someone you hardly know and imagine them anyway you want. I like the way books can start wars or revolutions or make me cry or change somebody’s mind. I am a passionate advocate of the written word.
Just to annoy all of you book purists out there, I do own a Kindle, gifted to me by my parents. The greatest thing about it is probably the free/very cheap books. This means I can read loads of classics which I never would have bothered to buy otherwise. It still amazes me that you can buy the entirity of Charles Dickens for free! Books like To The Lighthouse, the Odessey, Pride and Prejudice (along with anything you can imagine which is a classic) are there at the click of a button. At the risk of sounding like a Amazon salesperson, honestly, it’s great.
I know that Lilipop doesn’t read as much anymore, because she is so insanely busy all of the time changing the world and creating sparkly rainbows, but we both still really enjoy ink and paper (or a Kindle screen) for the freedom it brings. Read. It is the greatest gift, which is why education is so important. I can’t imagine what my life would be like if I had been denied this skill because of my gender, or the colour of my skin, or my wealth. This is what I preach, people, and I pity the fool who doesn’t get it.