The Suitcase Lady


July 10, 2012, 10:51 pm

Here is the surest way to get someone not to read a book. Tell your friend that the book is the greatest you have ever read, and they absolutely have to read it ASAP. This method virtually assures that your beloved book will not be opened.

It usually takes several similar suggestions from several dissimilar friends to motivate me out of my reading grooves. That’s how I finally picked up The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith.  I was enchanted after the first paragraph and have gone on to read every book in the series plus others by him. How many other splendid books am I missing by this absurd procrastination?

The deplorable tendency of many of us to delay following up on book suggestions can probably be blamed on English teachers. Take the best book in the world, assign it in English 101, set a deadline for next Monday and most of the joy flies out of the book. Reading for pure pleasure and being told what to read are not a good mix.

So for summer reading, I am definitely telling you NOT to read A Grown-Up Kind of Pretty by Joshilyn Jackson, Raylan by Elmore Leonard or Sophie and the Rising Sun by Augusta Trobaugh.


2 Comments for this entry

  • Jim Smith

    Don’t blame English teachers! I am just beginning to discover that that there is something in human DNA that causes us to wait for the fire of “time” before we finally get around to reading an assignment. I belong to a Great Books reading club and last month I waited until three days before beginning to read the Odyssey by Homer. Of course–I finished it. Just like college, I could have passed a test on the content. Please, please, don’t ask me questions about it today. Jim Smith

  • marilyn verick

    In defense of English teachers, I LIKED Silas Marner and it was in highschool English class that I was introduced to the New Yorker and have been reading it for nigh onto 60 years.