Books and I go a long time back. And when Dipali showed me the reason to share how long, I was more than happy to.
I fell in love with the world of words when I was a baby. I don’t know what brought us together – books and me. Was it the first storybook I got from my grandfather – a book on Jesus Christ. I was too young to read the alphabet then, forget a book. But loved how he would lie down on his bed in the afternoon, and read out the story to me. I hung on to every word like it was the gospel… Perhaps, it was how my mother couldn’t sleep before reading two pages of a magazine, a novel, a paper – whatever she could lay her hand on. Perhaps, it was how my much older cousins fought over Sydney Sheldons, or my sister hid her Mills & Boons from me because I was too young to read them then. Perhaps, it was all of those reasons that made me turn to books.
I devoured Enid Blytons in school, but there is one book that hooked me to reading for life – Rebecca. I had received an abridged version of Daphne Du
Maurier’s classic as a return gift on my cousin’s birthday (oh yes, in those days they gave books for return gifts, not plastic toys!). I was in second standard then, 7 or 8, I guess. And I had never before read anything like this. The narrayive style of the book was actually life changing. Because, it made me want to say in words everything I did, as if I was writing about my life in the stream of consciousness style. I faltered for words and found myself looking for a vocabulary that exceeded my years. And that’s when I truly fell in love with what words could do. And how.
It’s crazy, but I still do it – turn my life into a book in my head! Anytime I’m alone, I’m spinning sentences about how I would describe what I am doing, or seeing, or feeling right at that moment. And it’s all because of a book I read more than 20 years ago!
Of course, I later read the unabridged version of Rebecca and loved that too. But not in a life-changing way.
Different books have different impacts on you depending on where you are in life. Eat, Pray, Love came to me at a time when I was best placed to receive it as I did. I was feeling a little diffident, a little despondent and very lost.
The book takes you through the inward and outward journeys of a woman – one spiritual, the other sensual. And being the kind of person who believes in yin and yang balance, the two journeys, conjoined at the start as at the finish, made total sense to me, even spurred me to open up to similar experiences in my life.
And I’m telling you this for a very good reason.
BlogHer and BookRenter, a company that rents textbooks to college students, have joined forces because we know that books make a difference.
From May 3-28, together we are working to make a difference in children’s lives by generating new books for children who need them most — via the nonprofit organization First Book.
Want to help?
For every answer we receive in the comments to the following question, one book will be donated:
What book has had the greatest impact on your life?
That’s right: All you need to do is leave a comment, and BookRenter will donate a book to a child in need — up to 1,000 books.
Want to help even more? You can blog about our campaign, then add the specific URL of your post to Mr. Linky and we’ll add another book to the tally.
Because books really do a make a difference.
There are still a couple of days till the 28th- please do leave a comment, and blog too!