Augvocacy was created by Shealea at The Bookshelf Bitch to be held every month on August. This year’s advocacy is “Fostering A Reading Culture in the Philippines”. August is particulary significant in the Philippines because it also happens to be Filipino Language Month.
If you want to learn more about Augvocacy, click here! You’ll see discussion posts, interviews, guest posts from participating bloggers, and giveaways!
My reading life has taken many twists and turns and so, for my #Augvocacy post, I want to share some books and authors who got me into reading. As a reader, I’m not exactly the most consistent. There were points where I read a lot of books, and points where I barely read at all. I want to highlight the fact that being a reader, getting into or back into reading may not exactly be linear. It can take many forms and come at different points in your life.
For the Top 5 Books that got me into reading, I’m going to list the books that got me into reading a specific genre or back into the habit at specific points in my life.
1. Reading in General- Nancy Drew
Obviously, I was a kid when I first read Nancy Drew. I remember when I first got my hands on it. I was a bookish kid who didn’t have anything to read on vacation in her grandparents’ house. My mom then hands me an old copy of a Nancy Drew book. It was old and smelled musty but I didn’t let that stop me. I devoured this book and it got me into more Nancy Drew books. After that, I was hooked.
2. Middle-Grade/YA Fantasy: Percy Jackson
In high school, there’s a joke among my friends that I would eat books for lunch. This was because I often spent my lunch breaks in the library, reading. The high school library was kind of a refuge for a shy girl like me. There, I also discovered Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson series. I fell in love with those books and well, I carry that with me to this day.
3. YA Contemporary: Sarah Dessen
I don’t really read a lot of YA contemporary anymore. Long-term genre burnout, I guess? That, or I couldn’t really relate and thus decided not to read a whole lot anymore. However, in high school I devoured Sarah Dessen books. I think I started with Just Listen and I ended up reading a lot of her books. I don’t read her books anymore, but I would remember them for helping foster my love for reading.
4. Adult SFF: The Eye of the World
I had a long reading slump. It was one I’d never wish on anybody. It was long and it was terrible because during that time, all I read were law books. I love them, but they are not fun. I also only played fantasy rpgs at the time (I still do, but rarely). Then, I heard about the Wheel of Time. I wondered about this huge fantasy series and asked myself if I even have the courage or the desire to start such a huge series. I tentatively picked up The Eye of the World and told myself that if I didn’t like it, I don’t have to continue. Within the first two chapters, I was hooked. That kickstarted my blog and the fact that I now read more than I ever have before. Because of that, The Eye of the World has a permanent place in my favorite books of all time.
5. Classics: White Nights
I mentioned before my difficulty in getting into classic books. I had this feeling that classical literature wasn’t for me. While I have read The Castle of Otranto, it didn’t exactly make me want to pick up more classics. Well, that changed when I got my hands on the Penguin Little Black Classics edition of Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s White Nights. It’s a short story- novella length story that deals with unrequited love. I loved it. I enjoyed how the characters were portrayed, I liked how it treated love, and I liked how the story unfolded. From there, I went on to read more classics, and in particular, take an interest in Russian literature.
Short Stories: Nick Joaquin
It was really hard for me to appreciate short stories. All to often, I feel like they leave me hanging so I often opt for longer works instead. In my last year, my Philippine literature professor introduced us to one of the best Filipino writers of all-time: Nick Joaquin. He basically wrote magical realism before the term was even a thing- I think his work was called “Tropical Gothic” We read his short story, The Summer Solstice and I was blown away. It was one of the best short stories I’ve ever read and because it’s also in English, I can recommend it to everybody. Please do check it out when you can!
Do you have any books you can credit for your reading life? Tell me down in the comments below. I’d love to hear your thoughts!
- Prize: Paperback copy of The Land of Forgotten Girls by Erin Entrada Kelly
- Two (2) winners, one (1) Filipino winner, one (1) International winner (The Book Depository must be able to ship to you.)
- Runs From: August 1st (12 mn) to September 1st (12 mn).
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