11.18.2006

State of My Fall Into Reading


I have completed these books so far, except Washington's Crossing, which is still in progress. (I reported on some of them last month, but I have handy dandy pictures now, and wanted to be all cool.)

Since my last update, I've read The Scarlet Pimpernel, which thrilled me as much as it ever did; The Enchanted April, which I found less than enchanting this time around - a little too trite and a bit contrived - I think Under the Tuscan Sun spoiled me; and To Kill a Mockingbird - sorry to admit that I have never read it before now.

Can I just say that if there is one piece of writing (aside from scripture and the founding documents of our country) that every person, particularly every American, needs to read and internalize, it is To Kill A Mockingbird. And if I didn't read any other book in the Fall Into Reading challenge, I am so grateful that I read this one.

I haven't felt so deeply and learned so much from literature in a long, long time, and it was truly amazing to read such perfection in simple prose, and to see prejudice and gentleness and hope in humanity through the eyes of Scout. The last few pages from the front porch of Boo Radley's place - unforgettably precious.

One of the lines that keeps recurring to me is a comment Atticus makes that when great injustices happen, only the children weep. I think one of the keys to raising children who respect and appreciate others is to encourage them in that child-like instinct, not to "educate" them out of it or pass on our own jaded views of how things "are", and to teach them not only to weep for the "hell people give other people," but to show them that they can make a difference by just pausing long enough to walk in other people's shoes a bit.

It's been weeks since I finished To Kill A Mockingbird, but I am still crying over passages from it. A book like this is why we read.

For more about Katrina's Fall Into Reading Challenge, visit this post over at Callapidder Days. (I think you can still join in!)

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

...and can I just say that I have always been in love with Atticus Finch and that I wish I WAS Scout.

Carrotjello said...

Wow, you have read a lot of books. Lately, I can only handle reading humorous non fiction. It's the only thing that keeps me happy, and sane.

Mommy Dearest said...

You are doing a really great job! I need to read To Kill a Mockingbird, because I confess I've never read it, either.

Jennifer said...

You are all cool--pictures or not.

I'm enjoying all the reading, too.

Anonymous said...

i love to kill a mockingbird!

Anonymous said...

I agree, To Kill A Mockingbird is wonderful, it is my all time favoriate classic. Now I want to go re-read it, it's been a couple of years since I've read it.

Tammy said...

You know...I never read To Kill a Mockingbird, and only saw clips of the movie. But now I'm almost ready to pick it up after reading all of what you said and how deeply you were moved.

You really got some reading done here- good job! :)

Faith said...

AHHH, A girl after my own heart... To kill a Mockingbird is one of my all time favorites. Since we have adopted our Little Man, it resonates in so many ways.

No Cool Story said...

I have said it before, and Ill say it again: “To Kill a Mockingbird” is the best book ever. Scout is the awesome girl ever. And Atticus rocks. I’ve never watched the movie, I’m afraid it wouldn’t do justice to the book.

I had pretty high hopes for my reading this fall. I'm failing really bad CYM. I still have all those titles in my book list, but between Teh Internets and movies, my reading list is staying on a dark corner of my memory.
I’ll try to read Jane Eyre, your post has once again inspired me.

Dawn said...

It is indeed a wonderful book. And the movie's not half bad, as movies from books go.

No Cool Story said...

Hey Big T: bloglines is making me see green this week. I need to find a new feed tracker.

I heard rumors of waling, so I went to check it out ;-) and acted accordingly.
Thanks for letting me know.

a payne said...

I am reading for enjoyment again. I had to take a few months off. I am reading 1000 White Women and 365 feng shui tips.. So far so good.