Impressed and encouraged by Sophie's post about books throughout her life, I am writing something similar. My dad tells me I was always reading when I was little, way more interested in books than my brother was - much like now, by the way! Only from looking through memory boxes do I know that I loved Kipper the Dog, Spot and Hairy Maclary (Mum loves these books too). I can also faintly remember dressing up as Madeline one World Book Day in primary school, as well as getting a sticker for every few pages I read myself of The Cat in the Hat. Finally, I have to mention Babette Cole, author of The Trouble With Dad, Bad Habits, Tarzanna and Princess Smartypants. I have been racking my brain trying to remember who wrote these brilliant books and finally remembering just bought on a trip down memory lane!
Now, the big one. Harry Potter. I have a very clear memory of reading The Philosopher's Stone under my desk after I got the first two books for my eleventh birthday - and not being overly impressed with them! Shocking, to anyone who actually knows me. I can't for the life of me remember when I picked them up again, but all I know is, I've been obsessed for at least 6 years.
Once I started secondary school, I can distinctly remember reading to find friends when I was being bullied, and to distract myself from my crappy life; I spent many a lunch time reading Tracy Beaker in the library, sat in a corner by myself.
swapping opinions with my best friend-ever-since about The Mediator series by Meg Cabot in maths class. Such a teenage girl author but insanely brilliant and I've loved her since I was about 15. I used to carry the book I was reading at the time around school with me, usually to sneakily read under the table. The Mediator was probably the first young adult love story I read and loved. Probably first paranormal book, at that. Most of the books before this were children's books, Jacqueline Wilson and all that. Meg Cabot was the next logical step and honestly, I still love reading this series! It has a great female protagonist, a solid plot line and a few hot love interests. On a side note, love the UK covers and titles way more than the US ones!
Same friend, different series: Morganville Vampires. I can't quite remember how I got into them, who started reading first, but this is a series I raced through, literally unable to put down. And now, I have two friends to chat to about! Or I will, as soon as Tanya finishes book 11!
And yes, unfortunately, I read and went through a manic phase of Twilight fever in year 11. I look back at this time with shame. I still have all four books because, as mum puts it, they were part of my growing up. Which they were. They really were! The terribly cliché love story and absolutely rubbish (which I didn't always think) male protagonist and *shudder* truly weak female protagonist all taught me to distinguish between good and bad writing.
Moving on, the one book I definitely have to mention, otherwise Sophie would kill me, is Anna and the French Kiss. Only read this last month but it has to be quite possibly the best YA love story I've ever read (adult love story being Cat and Bones from Night Huntress, by the way). Just like Morganville, I sped through it, enjoyed every page, and didn't want it to end but wanted a happy ending at the same time!
Lately, as I read more and more, books need to be pretty spectacular to stay with me. Some book series I've loved for years, like Cat Royal. Which, incidentally, my mother also reads! Some I love by chance, like the Night Huntress after the first book was bought for me by a friend. But I always keep the books. They remind of other times, when I got them, when I read them, how I love them. And obviously, there are way more books that I could mention. Like reading The Time Travellers Wife for A-level English just because I love Doctor Who. And the first Terry Pratchett book I read, at the boyfriend's insistence. And despite hating the way Stephanie Meyer went around writing Twilight, loving her other novel The Host so much. And falling in love with dystopian fiction after reading The Hunger Games.
But I think I've rambled on for long enough now. Books have always been in my life, a true constant and one I could not live without. They always have a special story to tell, characters to love and stay with me long after I've put the book down. Have you got any particular favourites for a reason? A book that you simply cannot get rid of because of where you bought it? A book that helped through a rough patch? Love to hear about them!