I have been invited to participate in a Blog Carnival sponsored by the charming blog, Modern Mrs. Darcy. As the subject is The Book That Changed My Life, I immediately accepted the challenge to narrow down a very long list. Here is a look back at one of my favorites.
I think I had forgotten. I think I had let it go too long. Had I become afraid? Had I become lazy, or busy, or trying to be selfless, or what? I don't know. I believe sometimes we neglect old friends, friends who have been by our side for years just waiting for our attention, and it is difficult to identify exactly why we have neglected them. I have spent my life reading. It is what I do. There is no greater source for learning and expanding one's mind. But for some reason, I had neglected reading for reading's sake. I had neglected fiction. I have immersed myself in the scriptures. I have immersed myself in non-fiction and don't regret a minute of it. But that needn't be all there is. How had I forgotten?
Sometimes something will come along that changes us. Often it comes in an unassuming way, unexpectedly, and with no great fanfare. Such was my introduction to Star Girl. I read this little gem by Jerry Spinelli in one afternoon, unable to put down this tender, triumphant, heartbreaking story. Something about it spoke to my soul. It called out to me in a very real, very personal way, and I became apart of it, just as it became apart of me. Star Girl is filled with beauty, with truth, with reality; it is also filled with heartache, unkindness and the best and worst parts of humanity.
Having only briefly satisified my thirst for fiction, I immediately turned to the sequel. It is entitled Love, Star Girl. It is quite different from the first one. Among the many memorable parts, the following was the most important for me, the one that woke me up, the one that slapped me upside the head:
"Where are you going?" he said.
"Porch. Check the snow."
The way he said it, I stopped. I sat back down.
He looked at me across the table. "Silly worries don't become you."
Hello again, my old friend, fiction. I have missed you.
To read a little more about Star Girl's effect on me, see also this post entitled Mud Frogs: Beginning to See One Another.