Favorite Book
While I love writing my own stories, reading has long been one of my favorite pastimes. And I often read outside the genres in which I write. Earlier this week an errand took me past our local library. My to-be-read stack is pretty high, so I didn’t go inside. Instead, I stood outside the beautiful historic brick building for a few minutes. Images from the past flitted before my face. Countless times my dear mom and I had entered the building through a doorway that is no longer used. This daydreaming spell spurred other thoughts. Thoughts of the first book I’d read that really made a difference and sparked my passion for reading. Many childhood tales came to mind. My all-time childhood favorite? THE POKY LITTLE PUPPY by Janette Sebring Lowrey. Such a delightful tale. Barring those favorites of my youth, it took me only a short time to come up with the book that made all the difference—the same book that started me writing creatively on a regular basis. In the seventh grade, I was blessed with an English teacher whose own fondness of the written word made her class one of my most interesting learning experiences. One of the books she chose for required reading was WHERE THE LILIES BLOOM. This novel by Bill and Vera Cleaver is a rich, thought-provoking study of character and setting. Truly an emotionally-stirring masterpiece and pleasurable reading experience. The day we received our reading assignment, I read the book in less than an hour after helping mom with the dinner dishes. Listening to my favorite rock tunes and playing the guitar could wait. I couldn’t put my classroom reading assignment down. Thanks to the skill of the authors, I became compelled to find out more about the Appalachian children and how they overcame the internal and external conflict heaped upon them.

What was the first novel to pique your reading interest? A novel whose plot, setting and characters remain vivid memories?


Wishing you all a terrific week,

Shawna Moore
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11 Responses
  1. Elen Grey Says:

    This was loads of fun to think about first thing this morning, Shawna.

    You'll laugh. You loved the Poky Little Puppy. I loved the Poky Little Puppy's Naughty Day. Little Golden Books publisher was something else. A great story for such a small price.

    My writing has, also, been influenced by The Short Tree and The Bird That Could Not Sing by Dennis Foon; Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, and Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy.

    In truth, there have been so many influences on my writing that it is difficult to settle on a definitive book.

    Reading made me want to write.

    Much cheer.


  2. I loved the Little Golden Books too. I forgot the name of my favorite one, but it helped me learn to read and it had an owl in it. :-) Two other favorite books from early childhood were Charlotte's Web and The Wizard of Oz.


  3. ShawnaMoore Says:

    Hi, Elen!

    I remember The Poky Little Puppy's Naughty Day :) Those stories were so very special. I never tired of mom reading them to me or reading them myself. Have to agree about Little Women being another influence in my writing. Excellent characterization and in Alcott's stories :)

    Happy week wishes,

    Shawna


  4. ShawnaMoore Says:

    Hi, Vonda!

    Your favorite might have been The Owl and the Pussycat. There was also one with a Woodsy Owl, I believe. I still have a lot of those books tucked away in my childhood bookcase in the spare room. Those books are among my most precious possessions :)

    Charlotte's Web and The Wizard of Oz will always remain on my keeper shelves. Such magnificent imagery and allegory by L. Frank Baum. The best fantasy tale ever written!

    Happy week wishes,

    Shawna


  5. You just helped me remember, Shawna! My favorite first book was called The Bear in the Boat #397. Looked it up online. Isn't the internet a wonder? It's for sale on ebay for $20. I don't know if I still have mine or not. The owl was a secondary character.


  6. Elen Grey Says:

    You should never have posted on this topic today, Shawna. I've spent a wee bit of time in the basement going through some children's books and doing the -- ooh, ah -- thing. Terrible. Just terrible. lol But it's 54 F here for 15 mins., and I'm celebrating!

    Much cheer.


  7. Elen Grey Says:

    p.s. Vonda - The internet...it's a beautiful thang. ;-)


  8. What a great topic! My mom read ISLAND OF THE BLUE DOLPHINS and WHERE THE RED FERN GROWS to me and my brother when we were little. I love that she read novels to us, not just picture books, and I know this shaped me as a person, a reader, and a writer.

    On my own, I also quite liked TALES OF MR. PENGACHOOSA and PEPPERMINTS IN THE PARLOR. I think I'll go google them.

    Thanks!


  9. ShawnaMoore Says:

    Hi, Vonda!

    I don't remember The Bear and the Boat, but I've always enjoyed stories about bears :) Bears, puppies and bunnies :) Chances are I would have loved that tale :) Thanks for sharing the memory with us :)

    Smiles across the miles,

    Shawna


  10. ShawnaMoore Says:

    Hi, Elen!

    I've had times where I've gone through treasure boxes and places where I've stored childhood items. Always a fun way to pass the time on a rainy day or when the sentimental mood hits :) Thanks for sharing this with us :)

    Smiles across the miles,

    Shawna -- the sentimental one


  11. ShawnaMoore Says:

    Hi, Jill!

    You've brought back more lovely storytime memories with your post :) Like you, I also enjoyed when mom or dad read me stories where there weren't pictures involved. I could slip into those worlds in my mind and conjure my own mental images. Lots more fun that way :) Thanks, very much, for sharing your reading favorites and memories. I must look for THE TALES OF MR. PENGACHOOSA and PEPPERMINTS IN THE PARLOR :)

    Have a great week!

    Smiles across the miles,

    Shawna


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