Top Ten Best Bookish Memories

Happy Tuesday friends! Once again I’m participating in Top Ten Tuesday hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.


The theme for today is “Top Ten Best Bookish Memories.” This was a really fun one because I got to take a few nice trips down memory lane. I wasn’t able to come up with 10 memories, but I think the ones I could come up with do a nice job of describing my life in reading.

Top Ten Best Bookish Memories:

1. Reading the Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder books as a child

I got the entire box set from Santa one year for Christmas, and then they sat on my bookshelves for a year or two. I wasn’t very interested in reading then. I remember I tried reading Little House in the Big Woods several times, but lost interest after a chapter or two. Then, one day I picked it up again and was hooked. I went on to read the entire series within a few weeks, and I read and re-read them many, many times throughout my childhood. I never stopped reading after that, and I credit the Little House books with sparking my love of reading.

2. Getting and reading Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix in less than 48 hours on a long road trip through Texas

I was on a family vacation when J.K. Rowling’s 5th installment of the series came out and I really wanted a copy. I hadn’t thought ahead and pre-ordered or anything like that, and it wouldn’t have mattered anyway since we were on vacation. We were in San Antonio the day the book was released, and we stopped at a nearby mall to find a bookstore. After walking around for a bit, we found a Walden Books (the fact that it was a Walden Books really dates this story because they went out of business a few years ago)  and I bought my copy. We left for Houston that day, and I read in the car all the way there. I really only remember stopping for meals and other fun activities, but before we left Houston I had read the entire book…and at 870 pages that’s a pretty good achievement considering I was on vacation!

3. Reading Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince on hot days during my summer job

By the time the 6th installment of the Harry Potter series had come out, I was home from college for the summer and working a job as a cashier for a city pool. It was a pretty easy job except for the occasional difficult customer and the extreme heat of a Kansas summer (there was no air conditioning). I had a lot of extra time on my hands, and generally just did homework for the two summer classes I was taking. When the 6th book came out, I was prepared and had pre-ordered it. Like book 5, I also read this one in less than 48 hours. Despite the short length of time it took me to actually read the book, I still remember how reading it was a wonderful escape from those hot summer days. Those were the few days that summer when I didn’t notice that it was 100 degrees outside!

4. Logging my 100th book on my book spreadsheet

Pre-Goodreads days, I had an excel spreadsheet where I kept track of the books I had read and how long it took me to read them. I started the spreadsheet on June 26, 2006 and set out to see how long it would take me to read 100 books. Naively, I thought it would only take me 6 months to a year to reach this goal, but boy was I wrong! By the time a year had passed I had only logged 60 books on my list, and it wasn’t until late 2009 that I finally got to 100 books.  I remember it was a great feeling to finally reach that milestone. Although I am active on Goodreads, I still use my spreadsheet. As of today, I have finished 218 books.

5. Reading all of War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy

Everyone in my life knows I read a lot. People would often ask me about books–if I had read them, if I liked them. Often they’d pull out the famous classic literature books that everyone has heard of, but few have ever read. This one came up A LOT. So, I decided to bite the bullet and just go for it. During the summer of 2011, I had a broken and foot and consequently spent a lot of time inside lying down…what better time to start reading one of the longest novels ever written? I started reading it on July 3rd and didn’t finish it until October 28. Yikes. Reading that book was like running a marathon–you had to keep at it every day. It felt like such an accomplishment to finally finish it. Looking back, I’m really glad I did it…but I’m not anxious to do it again any time soon.

6. Staring my blog

I thought and talked about it for over a year, and then finally in April of 2012 I started the Ex libris blog. Finally, a chance to talk about books and meet other people who love to read as much as I do! When I began blogging I had grand plans for daily updates, and eagerly envisioned all the other cool bloggers I’d meet. While I’ve fallen short on the updating portion of my original vision, I have met many awesome and inspirational people. Blogging has been a great experience thus far, and I have no plans to stop anytime soon!

7. Having an author comment on my book blog

A few months into blogging, I actually had an author comment on my blog. I had mentioned his book in one of my Top Ten Lists (I hadn’t/haven’t reviewed it on here yet) and I guess that is how he came across my blog. He had some nice comments about my list and about my blog in general, and I remember how excited I was to have a real author comment on my little fledgling blog.

8. Having other book bloggers comment on  my blog

As I mentioned in number 6, the plans for this blog were in the works long before I actually began it. I had been an avid reader of book blogs for years, but I was a bit timid to become an active member of the community.  I started participating in this meme early in my blogging days, and I distinctly remember the first time one of my favorite book bloggers left a comment in response to one of my lists. I was so excited! For some reason, I remember that made me feel like a “real” book blogger…although I’d already been one for a few months.


What are some of your favorite bookish memories?

8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. biblioglobal
    Feb 05, 2013 @ 12:27:47

    I first read Little House on Plum Creek while I had the chicken pox. It completely distracted me from all the itching!


    • exlibrisheather
      Feb 05, 2013 @ 15:34:00

      Wow! If there is any time to get lost in a good book that is most certainly the time! I definitely don’t have as distinctive a memory about the Little House books as that!


  2. wandeca
    Feb 05, 2013 @ 12:35:00

    Aww, I forgot about the Little House series on my list. I read War and Peace when I was pregnant with my daughter, it took me the majority of the pregnancy to read the whole book. I remember having a a cheat sheet along with me to keep track of all those names.

    Happy Reading!


  3. Quinn
    Feb 05, 2013 @ 13:05:56

    Oh my gosh I was so excited to read HP5. I had waited those three long years for Rowling to finish it and for it to be published. And then I couldn’t put it down. It was so much darker and the ending broke my heart. I think it’s the saddest of the seven books.


    • exlibrisheather
      Feb 05, 2013 @ 15:37:17

      I agree! The ending was one of the first great losses of the series. I still think HP5 is one of my favorites, even if it is darker. I loved learning more of the history of Harry’s parents, and the time before Voldemort.


  4. diggingher
    Feb 05, 2013 @ 16:31:50

    I too have fond memories of the Little House series…my mom still has the boxed set several are battered and torn but who cares. I actually just retrieved CS Lewis series from her house last month and plan to read now as I never did have the chance in my youth.


    • exlibrisheather
      Feb 06, 2013 @ 10:52:10

      My copies of LH are pretty battered as well. Most are held together by scotch tape if I recall correctly…I actually just got the Chronicles of Narnia boxed set for Christmas. Somehow I have never read them either!


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