The Pleasure of Reading

It’s been a while since I got lost in the pages of a book. Giving myself over to the pleasure of the story and enjoying it.

My brain is hardwired to analyze story. To note the pacing, look for the hook, examine the bond with the main character, to study the story arc, and catalog the character development.

Even when I watch tv shows or movies, my mind is focused on the story structure. I can tell you exactly why a story works or it doesn’t.

But that all fell away as I read Bones of Faerie by Janni Lee Simner. The beauty of her writing sucked me in. I fell deeper and deeper into the story until I was completely immersed in it. Enjoying every moment with Liza.

And I realized this is why people read. For the pleasure of getting lost in something so much bigger than themselves. To care and to be carried away with the characters on a journey unlike any I’ve ever taken.

I missed this. Though a lifelong reader, I hadn’t taken off my writer hat in years. And it took this book to remind me that it’s important to be a reader. To stay 100% in the story and not think about why it’s working. To read solely for the pleasure of reading.

I am so thrilled that I got to meet Janni at the Tucson Festival of Books last year. She signed my copy, “For Kourtney, Listen to your magic!”

I don’t think she had any idea how important that message would be to me as I struggle through revisions of Six Train’s sequel. How personal it felt in that moment when I finished her book and the magic of it still hummed in my veins.

This is a book that I will treasure.

Because a good book makes you smile, but a great book energizes your soul.

And this is a great book!

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24 Responses to The Pleasure of Reading

  1. That sounds like a great read Kourtney and I never thought of that, how writers must to dome degree analyse others works as they read.. So this book must have indeed held some magic to capture you into the world of pure imagination…
    Lovely.. xxx Hugs Sue x

    • Sue it’s a beautiful book. I can’t help it. My mind is always trying to see how the story comes together and examine what’s working and how it’s working. Pure magic here.

  2. Carrie Rubin says:

    It’s such a treat to get lost in a book, and as you mention, it doesn’t always happen for writers. We’re too busy deconstructing things. Glad to hear you were able to find an escape. I felt the same thing recently with “The Girl on the Train.”

    • It is. And it’s a big part of why I started writing. But it’s really hard to let go and just get so into the story that you exist there and only there. Exactly. Studying things and trying to get at why we are enjoying it. I’ve heard tons of good things about that book. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Sheila says:

    A beautiful writing style like that is what I’m looking for most when I read and for exactly that reason – because it feeds the soul. I’ll have to check this one out – thank you!

  4. The perfect phrase for that signed book. Paragraph 5 sounds like a vacation of reading renewed you

    • It really was. And when I reread it, it really hit me in that moment. It felt like she was speaking to my soul. It’s tough to be slogging away on a manuscript and wondering if your story will be good enough or if it will matter. But she reminded me of why I write and what a great book is capable of doing to a reader. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. EllaDee says:

    Sounds like a great book, and when I looked it up, part of a trilogy, so you really can get lost in it. I like a story that never ends!

    • It is! And I really really want to read the trilogy right now, but I just switched back to working on my adult manuscript so I have to be reading adult novels. I’m definitely getting back to this trilogy after I finish revisions.

  6. Lori D says:

    Boy, can I ever relate to this, Kourtney. I can’t seem to get lost in a book, because I always find something wrong. I haven’t gotten lost in a storyline since I read yours and Carrie Rubin’s. Thanks for letting us know about this one.

    • It’s a rare treat. I’m going to have to work harder at taking the author hat off more. Aw thank you! That’s the highest compliment. Carrie’s book is awesome. Hope you enjoy this one too!

  7. Ally Bean says:

    How wonderful that you stumbled upon your love of reading [again] right when you needed to take a break from writing. This book sounds like it energized you in a way that will stay with you always. Will add it to my ever growing list of books to read.

    • I’m hard at work on revisions to Six Train’s sequel right now so it was definitely a nice moment in a sea of work. I haven’t taken a break from writing in months. Even when I have time scheduled in, things tend to shift and there goes my time away. ๐Ÿ™‚ This is a fantastic book. LOL. Yes, I have that same list. ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. I saw this pop up on my Goodreads feed, and was intrigued by the cover. You’re so right — there’s nothing like the magic of a good book that sweeps you away and makes you forget about everything, including analyzing the writing itself. I have that problem as well. I call myself a “hard to please” reader. I abandon a lot of books, probably too many, but if the story doesn’t reel me in by the 1/3 mark, I don’t bother finishing it. There are too many good books out there waiting to be read, so I don’t feel badly about not giving it more of a chance.

    • My friend recommended it to me when we were at the Tucson Festival of Books. I was going to a panel that the author was on and with my love of literary and unconventional, my friend thought it would be a great fit. She was 100% right! Definitely, I can’t get into a story if the structure and the writing aren’t really polished. If I can see the flaws it’s all I can see. Like an email with typos and grammar mistakes. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I’ve had to abandon a few books. Sometimes it’s a few pages in (if it’s from the library). Sometimes 50 pages in. Or I put it aside when I’m halfway in and think someday I’ll get back to this, but someday never comes.

  9. It is a rarity to get so lost in a book where I forget to analyze it for strengths and weaknesses. Writers are notorious for studying other works, but I think we have to if we hope to learn and grow. Glad you had such a magical experience!

  10. Oh I like that moment of getting caught up in a book! Thanks for sharing about your read, Kourtney ๐Ÿ™‚

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