Posts Tagged ‘Virginia Hamilton’

To All the Books I’ve Loved Before

November 22, 2010

One of my friends tagged me  in a note on Facebook, a while ago, encouraging me to post a response considering “The Rules: Don’t take too long to think  about it. Fifteen authors (poets included) who’ve influenced you and that will always stick with you. List…” I didn’t reply in kind but I did think about it for a good while after and I found myself contemplating how a significant chunk of like, the first ten books or so (or more), involve things that I’ve read growing up. I have a serious soft spot for comfort reads — like spaghetti, banana bread, guava jam and a good slab of macaroni pie — which take me back to growing up. I love that feeling. Not unlike that of comfort food, which you get from tucking into a familiar, well-worn book that you loved as a teenager or child.

I read The Velveteen Rabbit inside of a thrift store a few months ago, and felt the same way. I love, love, love that description of the boy’s love for his stuffed rabbit: “he loved him so hard that he loved all his whiskers off.” Damn if love isn’t a lot like that. I grew up believing in fairies and angels, Santa Claus, mal yeux, walking in the house backward after midnight, wishes on wish bones or one-cent coins in a fountain, that my toys could come alive (and not in a creepy, my-cabbage-patch-doll-will-stab-me-in-the-head-once-I’m-asleep-type alive) so of course I loved this story when I first read it.