When I tell others that I majored in English or that I want to teach middle school language arts and literature, a certain question often arises. I dread it every time, even though I’ve crafted a simple answer that is, for the most part, true. Of course, it is not permanently true; the answer may change at any time and, in fact, has changed repeatedly throughout my life–throughout the last few years, in fact.
The question is this: what is your favorite book?
My cautiously crafted answer is always To Kill a Mockingbird, because of all the books I’ve read, that one holds the most memories. The memories that formulate my attachment are personal and close to my heart. Perhaps selecting TKAM (as I affectionately abbreviate the title) is a bit cliché. It is a fairly common favorite. But the truth is that it is my most frequent favorite book, and I think that is enough to answer the question. Sure, TKAM’s reign as my favorite book is occasionally interrupted by fond memories of reading Les Misérables in the unabridged format during my senior year of high school, and childhood memories of plowing through Brian Jacques’ Redwall books as a kid. Jane Eyre became a favorite for some time when I re-read it in college, too, and every time I re-read Sense and Sensibility, it becomes a favorite for awhile. I’ve also begun collecting different editions of Pride and Prejudice because I can’t resist them and all the wit I know lies within those pages.
Do you have a favorite book, or do you, like me, feel as if choosing a favorite is a thoroughly ridiculous venture? Do share!
Until next Thursday,