I’m starting a new series on Mikepedia called “Stuff I Like”. It’s a way for me to talk about things I like and why. In addition to giving me something to write about, I hope to get some reader feedback. Do you think this is stupid? Do you like reading books too? Sound off in the comments section.
In recent months I have rediscovered a source of joy in my life — books. The idea of sitting down and reading a book has suddenly become favorable in more ways than one. It would be untruthful for me to omit the fact that when I see myself reading a book in my mind’s eye that I am also wearing a vintage 1950′s smoking jacket, but that is subject matter for another blog post. In middle school I was a big reader. Black Hawk Down, Redwall, and Tom Clancy were among some of my favorites. Then early in my college career I became infatuated with graphic novels. First I absorbed all of the greatest Batman stories I could get my hands on, and then finally I made it to Watchmen. It was so complete with an intricate plot, political commentary, and literary devices bursting at its seams. After that, I couldn’t enjoy other graphic novels as much. Then, I finally came to the book that renewed my spirit in terms of reading. Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried. It made me feel for the characters in the book while at the same causing me to reflect upon myself. It goes without saying that I highly recommend this book. It’s been about a year since I first read it and since then I have made it a goal to always have a book in my backpack during the day. If I am ever lucky enough to have some extra time, it ends up being time well spend thanks to my book.
While I’m speaking of books and reading I can’t allow my self to forgo mentioning The Bible. Yes, I’m talking about the one and only holy book inspired by God himself. Without a doubt it’s the most well known book in human history. The meaning and importance of The Bible and its impact on my faith are things on a totally separate level from the “reading” I have discussed above. Therefore when I put my “currently reading” or “top 5 favorite author” posts out on the ol’ interwebs you won’t see me mention The Bible or any of it’s individual books. Reading The Bible is, to me, something completely different and set apart from the more casual type of reading that this post is about. I will say that The Bible is AWESOME.
Reading works very well as a stress reducer for me. School may be hectic and I may have lots of work to do, but when I start reading a book I’m transported into a different zone where that stuff doesn’t matter. It also pairs well with some of my other favorite hobbies; coffee and relaxing. (Yes, I consider “relaxing” as one of my hobbies)
Anyways, if anyone is actually reading this, I’m interested to know how you like to “get your read on”. All time favorites, enjoyable reads from the past, or even something you found extremely mundane, it’s all fair game. To start it off I will list a few books that stand out in my brain…
Books I Like:
- The Penultimate Truth by Philip K. Dick –> I just finished reading this one and it’s excellent. If you like sci-fi and can deal with some dense reading then you will probably dig it.
- The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien –> Commonly known to be a great book, it definitely lives up to it’s expectations. Experiences and “ponderings” from a writer who served in Vietnam, I found this book moving and though provoking.
- Coffee: A Guide to Buying, Brewing, and Enjoying by Kenneth Davids –> Still working my way through this one, if you are looking for information on any aspect of coffee, start here. It covers the history of coffee, how every aspect of it’s preparation, the differences between different coffee growing regions, and the list goes on. If you like coffee the way I like coffee, then this is a great source of information.