I am a book fiend. I love to read and I tend to do so incredibly fast. My absorption rate is something like 120+ pages an hour, which means I read anywhere from 2-7 books a week depending on how much free time I have. What and why I read is a whole different story…
I really enjoy modern literature, though I’m starting to spend more time in the classics. I enjoy meaty novels – ones that make me think, process, and develop a more defined worldview that may or may not support that of the author. I enjoy smart humor such as quips on existential crises and their relation to watermelons or some such thing. I enjoy historical fiction – books that incorporate truth of the period into the fiction to add complexity, realism, and context. I enjoy novels that portray a broad range of mental health issues accurately and fairly. People are complex, why would a novelist paint them any other way?
Some books I have really enjoyed include: the Kite Runner, Middlesex, the Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime, a Spot of Bother, Pillars of the Earth, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, Life of Pi, the Perks of Being a Wallflower, and the Elegance of the Hedgehog.
Unfortunately, this type of reading tends to have a pretty fast burn out rate. After spending so much time reading thought provoking material, I can no longer consume anything meaningful lest my head explode.
Thus, recently, I have been binge reading. Explanation: reading excessive amounts of book candy.
My specific brand of book candy is teen novels. I love them. I love the simplicity, adventure, intensity and range of emotion, romantic misgivings, personal development, and the mischief. Examples include Twilight, Harry Potter, Percy Jackson and the Olympians, A Wrinkle in Time, and for a slightly older crowd, the Sookie Stackhouse novels. I’m drawn in the world of fantasy, whim, and adventure. I can blast through these books without much thought merely to enjoy the ride – however long that may be.
I use book candy as a form of self care. It’s my way to relax, allow my mind a break from the intensity of life, and to prepare myself to face what comes next. (Warning, what I say next may sound like I have my master’s in counseling…) I’m a huge promoter of self care. I strongly believe that each person should partake in self care in one form or another daily. Self care is an important way to regroup, replenish, and rejuvenate. For you video game junkies, it’s how you get your life energy back to 100% before the next battle, which is important if you want to survive.
Examples include: reading, journaling, spending time with friends or family, cooking, baking, exercising, outdoor activities, listening to music, taking a bath, and more.
Whatever your preferred forms of self care may be, do you take the time to indulge daily?