Twitter Tumblr FlickrFacebookContact me
This Month Previous Articles Author Title Source Age Genre Series Format Inclusivity LGBTA Portfolio

Recent posts


Month in review

Reviews
Andy McBean and the War of the Worlds by Dale Kutzera
Bad Kitty School Daze by Nick Bruel
Boy Writers: Reclaiming Their Voices by Ralph Fletcher
Buzz! by Ananth Panagariya
David Hockney: A Bigger Picture by Tim Barringer
The Death of Bernadette Lefthand by Ronald B. Querry
Ghouls, Ghouls, Ghouls by Victoria Laurie
Grandpa Green by Lane Smith
Hard Truth by Nevada Barr
How To by Julie Morstad
J. C. Leyendecker by Michael Schau
Listening for Lucca by Suzanne LaFleur
Moby Duck by Donovan Hohn
Moonhead and the Music Machine by Andrew Rae
My Many Colored Days by Dr. Seuss
The Necropolis Railway by Andrew Martin
A Night in the Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny
Paul Is Undead: The British Zombie Invasion by Alan Goldsher
Phoebe and Her Unicorn: A Heavenly Nostrils Chronicle by Dana Simpson
Sammy the Seal by Syd Hoff
Satan's Prep by Gabe Guarente
Satellites in Outer Space by Isaac Asimov
The Seer of Shadows by Avi
Sneakers, the Seaside Cat by Margaret Wise Brown
Stars by Mary Lyn Ray
The Tail of Emily Windsnap by Liz Kessler
A Touch of Gold by Joyce Lavene and Jim Lavene
Tut: The Story of My Immortal Life by P.J. Hoover
When You Are Alone/It Keeps You Capone by Myra Cohn Livingston
Zombie in Love by Kelly DiPucchio

Miscellaneous
No students! or My First Bookstore
On deja vu or why I keep a list of what I read
Replacing ARCs with Research
Why I'm no longer accepting review copies

Previous month

Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

My Kind of Mystery Reading Challenge 2017 February - January 2017-8



No students! or My First Bookstore: 04/23/15

Satellite view of the bookstore's location.

I didn't really get into reading until late elementary school. There was a small bookstore in the strip mall across the street from the elementary school, or halfway home from the jr. high. It was one of those stores that had a sign posted on the window warning, "no students" between the hours of such and such (basically the time when the schools let out). I would have paid no attention to this hole in the wall because the sign was unfriendly, the store was small, and books just weren't my thing.

But my grandmother knew the owner. Actually, my grandmother was the type of person who always knew someone wherever we went. I'm not entirely sure how she did that, but she did.

My grandmother who didn't like the sentiment of the sign either decided to use me as a teachable moment. Or something. So she introduced me to the owner — a stern older woman who looked too mean to be a librarian but secretly wanted to be, and so opened a bookstore instead.

I don't remember what exactly she said, except to promise I would be coming in one some regular schedule (weekly or monthly, I don't recall). More importantly, I wouldn't always be accompanied by my grandmother, and on those days I would be showing up after school. I would spend no more than an agreed upon amount of time and then I would make my selection and pay for my book. If I caused any undue trouble, she should telephone my grandmother.

All this time, I'm standing there somewhere between dumbstruck with anger and feeling scared to death that I'd be expected to be in here alone with the Wicked Witch of the bookstore. I hoped she wouldn't agree to such terms, but she did. (My grandmother had that effect on people too.)

Around the same time as this, I was getting ready for some of my first overnight camps (Girl Scouts, and a sixth grade graduation camp). My grandmother told me to pick some books to read on the bus because the ride one way was an hour or more and I might get bored.

I ended up picking the first two of the Dragonriders of Pern by Anne McCaffrey because the dragons looked like dinosaurs and I had just seen Flight of Dragons based on The Dragon and the George by Gordon R. Dickson and Flight of Dragons by Peter Dickinson.

And I ended up reading both McCaffrey books on the bus ride (one out and one back) and I knew the grumpy bookstore had more of her books. So yes, I did start going. And throughout all that time until I went to college, I was a regular visitor. I even eventually got to invite some of my closest friends in (with my supervision and threats to call my grandmother if they misbehaved).

The store is closed now and I'm long since moved, 500 miles to the north, but it was my first experience as a regular bookstore customer. I actually still have many of the books I bought there, though not all of them.

Comments (0)


Name:
Email (won't be posted):
Blog URL:
Comment: