Friday 22nd October 2021

Reading Books Rocks. 2018.106.

Reading Books Rocks. 2018.106.

Recently I re-discovered reading…books!

I have always wanted to read and books were a firm favourite. I recall my mum, who was not a book-reader, saying to me in my early teen years that I could not borrow books from the library if I was going to spend all my time reading. I have the feeling she wanted me to be a bit more active helping her around the house!

I continued to read, long after “lights out”, as my room was on another floor to my parents’ bedroom so I continued my habit of reading. Fiction. School stories based on English lives, and many others. Loved them.

I had already been the library prefect at primary school so books were part of me!

But what happened to me over the past decade or so?

I suspect busy-ness caring for others, the introduction of the iphone, ipad and quick grabs of reading along with finding little to interest me in the preferred fiction  areas. Oh, I read Maeve Binchy, Joanna Trollope and Rosamund Pilcher in my 40s but by the time I got to my late 50s and 60s I found not a lot that was in my interest in fiction.

I switched to non-fiction and biographies and memoirs mostly.

Then in the last 4 years I have struggled to read a book because of:

  • lack of ability to concentrate
  • being drawn to the quick fix of social media more
  • the newspaper being enough of a read
  • nothing that held my interest and attention like I found in my earlier years

I joined the local libraries and borrowed some books, which mostly were returned unread. I trawled internet book sites and did make purchases but they are all in the:

  1. self-help
  2. learning about mindfulness
  3. understanding anxiety and depression
  4. life as per: Pema Chodron, Tara Brach, Brene Brown, Anne Lamott

These were ‘lifelines’ as I tried to understand and accept my life as it had changed 2015-mid 2017.

What was missing?

Escapism. Yet, I could not concentrate. I needed to move around and move on to something else especially as cancer entered my life.

Then in the past months as my cancer surgeries and treatments have been completed or are finishing, my mind is less on high alert and I am able to take time to sit and read.

I still, on occasion, feel the pull of checking my iphone,  but I am improving.

I may not yet be reading for long stretches or much fiction, but I am reading…B O O K S.

Lately I have been buying because some new release books were on my list of “MUST READ”.

Here they are:

I liked to call the lovely time after lunch when I was teaching: D rop E verything A nd R ead time so now I am giving myself that time-out too.

Do you recall that time for reading at school?

Maybe it was when your kids went to school. I hear some schools have continued the tradition and that makes this old teacher very happy!

What books do you enjoy reading?

Do you buy or borrow?


Joining Kylie here for I Blog on Tuesdays and Sue and Leanne’s link on Wednesdays called Midlife Share The Love here.







  1. Over thr past 12 mths or so I have barely read a novel. I read alot but mostly for study and research. I also listne to lots of audio books too. I am heading away on a trip and plan on reading a couple of good books. Very excited about it actually.

  2. Great minds read alike – I have a book post today too! I rediscovered my love of reading when I revamped my sleep hygiene. I started reading just before bed but now I like to pick up a book whenever I have a spare moment. As a wannabe minimalist, I like to borrow my books from friends or the library and if I do buy books, it’s usually from charity shops. If there’s a title I really want to read and can’t obtain anywhere else, I splash out on a full price purchase!

    • I am finding reading is better for me than screens but I also need to plan in my reading time more. I will get better I know!!

      Denyse x

  3. Rereading books is one of my favourite things to do! I love all the little discoveries you can make when you read a book for the second (or fifth! haha) time.

  4. I read every single day and it is my favorite activity. My life doesn’t seem complete without lots of books around and I actually get sweaty and nervous if I have only one or two books on my shelves unread. An afternoon at the library is heaven.
    I’m glad that you are enjoying reading again. Novels are a great was to escape! I trade TV for reading and it is almost always a good trade. Perhaps as you continue to feel better it will be easier to bring reading back into your life regularly and for fun! MLSTL

    • Thank you Michelle for sharing what reading books means to you. I certainly recognise that in myself of a long time ago. My love of social media has distracted me I guess. I also find that there is no genre these days in fiction which appeals.

      I love the escapism of reading but for now my reading of memoirs will suffice. I do like a glimpse into others’ lives!

      Denyse x

  5. Very nice. I love reading. I am lucky because I am able to read on my commute to and from work. It is something that I love to do. It is my favorite lesuire activity. #MLSTL

    • Ah yes, that is a great way to read. If I cannot start my day reading my daily newspaper (still home delivered) then it does not feel right.

      I am enjoying audio books on my drives of around 2 hours each way when I go for some updates for my cancer treatments.

      Reading does rock!

      Denyse x

  6. I read voraciously and always borrow or read online. I love the Overdrive online library and I’ve also discovered that you can google “read free online” and a lot of novels are available there. I never buy books because I read them too quickly to get my money’s worth and don’t have the desire to store them – they become more clutter if they’re sitting on a shelf not being read. I like to churn through them and then return them for someone else to read. I’m a huge fan of Nora Roberts and I read a lot of YA fiction – easy to read and usually upbeat and a lot of them become movies!
    MLSTL and I’ve shared on my SM 🙂

    • It is good to know that reading can be for free! It sounds like you have reading and getting into it, nailed! Thanks for sharing.

      I have no genre other than memoirs that I find of interest these days. I am glad you have some great ones there!

      Denyse x

  7. I LOVE to read. In the past, I usually bought my books because I like to re-read. But now, it’s hard to find books in English here in Germany, so I take what I can get.I just finished The Handmaids Tale and We Have Always Lived in the Castle. I am trying to read Fear by Bob Woodward, but it is so scary to read about the crazy American president that I can only tolerate a little at a time.

    • I have found it hard to ‘get rid of books’ over the years but moving house a few times made me become less so. However, I am like you, when there are favourites it can be good to re-visit them.

      I agree something that related to the crazy US president would be hard to take in large bites.

      Good luck with finding more English books. Do you follow any ex-pat communities? I know one person who runs a group, facebook etc Two Fat Expats and she is an Aussie in Hamburg.

      Denyse x

  8. I was always an avid reader as a kid….but it’s harder when life gets in the way. That’s why I love being retired. I’m now in a book club and at least read that one book a month. Otherwise I still love going to the library and getting new ones!!

  9. I love reading for the pure escapism but I get what you mean about shorter attention spans and the lure of social media. I loved Leigh’s book and am writing a book review to post soon. Sharing for #mlstl

    • I would love to do the escape thing from time to time so its got to be that shorter attention via SM thing! Listening to Leigh Sales read her book as I drove back & forth to Sydney on Monday was/is amazinf. For a few times I got teary. I love her work. When she was on Home Delivery with Julia Zemiro I loved seeing her family life. Since then her Dad had died & I recall listening to her chat about her Dad wirh Annabel crabb on Chats10Looks3. And last year we had a twitter convo about our sweetpeas!

  10. I so agree Denyse. When I started blogging I was exactly the same. Started reading self help books, entrepreneurship books and everything to do with blogging. And I just couldn’t concentrate on anything just for the fun of it. I’m actually now at the point of claiming back some of my time, and realising that time isn’t finite and there are a lot of good books I would enjoy. But yes, finding a “Lack of ability to concentrate,
    being drawn to the quick fix of social media more,
    the newspaper being enough of a read,
    nothing that held my interest and attention like I found in my earlier years,”
    all rings very true to me. Enjoy your reading. I shall take a leaf from your book and try to read more!

    • I hear you.

      It’s like I got bogged down with self-help and self-care books too. I wanted to know “why” I was not feeling like I thought I would in retirement. I admit they have been useful and they were read or listened to before I got cancer. Some of the learning I did seeped in because I think it was helpful during my treatments and surgeries to out what I learned into practice.

      Now things are ‘settling down’ (always hopeful that is the case) it is time for me to slow down even though I find it hard, and to do what I said. Drop Everything and Read!

      The daily paper is a given. It is read 7 days a week.

      Thank you for sharing your experience too Jo,

      Denyse x

  11. I buy, but I’m a Kindle girl now. I have a Kindle but I also have the app on my phone so I can read anywhere that I am. I found that when I read only non-fiction that I don’t read as much. I need to fit in some cozy mysteries in order to keep my interest in reading.

    • I really like how you have worked out what is good for you reading-wise. I think I am still in transition mode.

      Thank you for sharing.

      Denyse x

  12. I love to read mysteries and crime. I have never gotten into bio or anything serious. My reading has ebbed and followed depending on what else is going on in my life. I remember when my grandmother took me to the library for the first time I fell in love.

    • What a beautiful memory made with your grandmother.

      Yes, it opens up the eyes to see the books all in one place.

      I took some of my then-young grandchildren and they were stoked to borrow!

      My daughter is a teacher-librarian in a large school and many of the kids give her joy when they tell her how much they love coming to the library

      Watch for my Tuesday post!

      Denyse x

  13. I LOVE to read, although I tend to spend too much time in the non-fiction department (self-help and writing craft books) and not enough time escaping into a good fiction novel with relatable characters that become good friends.

    While I love to own books (and dream of a personal library filled with hardback editions), I do use my local library on a regular basis. I tend to visit at least three times a week and always have a minimum of five books on hold 🙂

    • Go you! I have many self-help books too and they did indeed help with aspects of challenges life brings. I have many on audio as I can listen in the car or when I am creating.

      I really miss the ‘lost in a book’ thing but sadly there is little for me, at my age and stage that appeals.

      Denyse x