If you are a friend of mine on Facebook – and if you’re not, feel free to add me at http://www.facebook.com/johnmcmanusmusic -- you know that I am a big reader. Sometime last year I got the idea to take a picture of what book I am reading and uploading it on my Facebook page. I am glad I have done this because it’s an easy way to keep track of what I am reading. At the end of this blog I have listed all the books I have or currently am reading for the year 2012.
I don’t remember when exactly I became such a big reader – I believe it was college or when I started working at Borders in 2003. Certainly throughout my school career I was assigned a great deal of reading but not that I have been out of school for a while all of my reading is for pleasure. I am the kind of person that will read a biography of Alexander Hamilton that is around 1,000 pages or the unabridged Les Miserables that is about 1,300 pages. I have a huge and ever-expanding library of books.
One of the reasons that I have read so many books this year is because I have the time and the interest. Music and everything that goes along with it is certainly what I do with a good portion of my time but I don’t go out to the bars or watch much TV so I have ample time for reading. I just love reading. I think part of the reason that I read so much is because I have a huge intellectually curious mind. I want to know more and more and more. I love being lost in a good story, be it a biography, a history book or a work of fiction.
Many people I know and statistics have also shown that many people do not read at all. To them I say you should. You don’t have to read as much as I do, but I think reading expands your mind, comprehension skills and intellect.
No one in my family reads as much as I do. My mother was an English teacher but outside of her schoolbooks she liked to read two newspapers a day – the local one, The Delaware County Daily Times and The Philadelphia Inquirer. She liked to stay informed and I recall she clipped many an article out of these newspapers for herself or others. My father was an electrical engineer at Boeing for over forty years and a very intelligent person but he does not read for enjoyment. My siblings also aren’t passionate readers.
Reading makes me happy and is relaxing and may be one of the reasons people consider me a good writer.
In no particular order, here is my top 5 favorite books I have read this year:
The Prisoner of Heaven by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson
Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns Goodwin
Pinstripe Empire by Marty Appel
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon
I wonder what it says about me that I have read so many books this year. For those you that know me you know I am outgoing and enjoy spending time with friends. But there is the other side of me that is introverted and enjoys spending time reading. So I think it says that I haven’t lost all of my introvertedness (before Grade 10 I was pretty introverted and shy) and it also says as I have mentioned that I am very curious about things and want to know more.
So if you don’t consider yourself a reader maybe you should stop into a bookstore and find something that interests you. I feel like reading is a very important and valuable thing to do.
The following is a list of books I have read this year to date:
Book List 2012
1. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
2. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
3. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
4. 11/22/63 by Stephen King
5. Fab: An Intimate Life of Paul McCartney by Howard Sounes
6. Eragon by Christopher Paolini
7. Eldest by Christopher Paolini
8. Brisingr by Christopher Paolini
9. Inheritance by Christopher Paolini
10. Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns Goodwin
11. Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter by Seth Grahame-Smith
12. Washington: A Life by Ron Chernow
13. Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson
14. Drift by Rachel Maddow
15. Pinstripe Empire by Marty Appel
16. Opening Day by Jonathan Eig
17. The Boys of Summer by Roger Kahn
18. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer
19. Anchored in Love by John Carter Cash
20. The Prisoner of Heaven by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
21. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon
22. Perfecting Sound Forever by Greg Milner
23. The Bourne Legacy by Eric Van Lustbader
24. The Obamians by James Mann
25. The Audacity of Hope by Barack Obama
26. Promises to Keep by Joe Biden
27. Twilight of the Elites by Christopher Hayes
28. Plain Honest Men by Richard Beeman
29. Ratification by Pauline Maier
30. 102 Minutes by Jim Dwyer and Kevin Flynn
31. The Price of Politics by Bob Woodward
32. Sweetness by Jeff Pearlman
33. Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling
34. The Bourne Betrayal by Eric Van Lustbader
35. The Beatles: The Biography by Bob Spitz (currently reading)