Second, I read L.M. Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables. If you're thinking that's a far cry from the first book, you'd be right. Oddly enough, I even chose to begin reading my third book, The Complete Collected Poems of Maya Angelou, as I was reading Anne of Green Gables. I guess, you might say, it kept me grounded. Montgomery's book was published in 1908, and I couldn't help but wonder who "Anne" would have been for little African-American girls. While little white girls grew up dreaming of being Anne or Laura Ingalls Wilder from the Little House series, what did little black girls dream of being? Who were their role models? Who did they relate to? These are good questions that should be asked for they answer other questions.
Did I enjoy Anne? Of course, I did! When my friend, Tammy, recommended it to me, she told me I remind her of Anne. I had to laugh a few chapters in because the fact Anne loves to talk...is most definitely a good comparison to me! I think it's a delightful book about a precocious child that anyone would enjoy reading, just as I think that Maya Angelou's work should be read and enjoyed by everyone. I don't always combine two books to read, but I find it does make me think more - which is always a good thing. It's important to see things from different perspectives.
My fourth book, which I just finished, is Sylvia Plath's The Bell Jar. Now, before you think I now combined the oddest of books ever, let me explain...
Remember when I blogged that I had read some "fluff" and wanted something more? Well, right after that a friend of mine posted the BBC's list of 100 novels you should read:
So, I took the list challenge and found that I'd read 34 of them. Then another friend of mine mentioned to hold off on reading The Bell Jar, but I'd already read it a long time ago. I decided I should pull it off my bookshelf and read it again. (After all,...I am still that precocious child and, if you warn me away from something, I'm heading straight for it! ;) )
Now, I can't go into all the ways my brain works when it comes to why I read what I read and how I get out of it what I get out of it. I am aware all of us approach a book from our own angle, our own life experiences, our own perspectives. Again, like Hughes' and Angelou's works, it isn't a read that is easy on the heart or the mind, but I do think it's an important voice that needs to be heard. I especially think it's an important voice for women to listen to. If you research Plath's life and her death, you'll gain even more understanding about what I mean. Her life is a lesson for us all.
If you wonder what I'm up to next, I didn't really know until just a moment ago. I saw a quote of Don Carpenter's posted on Goodreads. Along with the quote, it mentioned that Anne Lamott dedicated her bestselling novel Bird by Bird to Carpenter. My brain said, "Wait, I've read that book!" So, I searched my "favorites" bookshelf...(yes, of course, I have a bookshelf just for my most favorites, don't you??)...and, sure enough, there it was! I opened it up and found I had made notes to myself back in June of 2006, I even noted they were "important" notes. I also found tons of notes I'd written in the back and throughout the book.
Wow,...SOOOOO much has happened in my life since 2006...
I've decided it's time to take a journey through this book again. My "to read" list is going to have "to wait" a little longer. As my note in the book says, "this is important." :)