So, this week I told you about my Life with Comics and Movies, this time it will be about “My Life with Books”. 🙂
I started reading when I discovered old and dusty books in the lost library of my great-grandparents. Nobody really paid attention to those books and no one was really interested wether they were standing there for reasons of “nice-looking” or if somebody read them. Most of them were written in old-german-font and I kinda loved that. For all of you out there who do not know it – maybe google it – keep in mind that this was not only a different font but also it was a bit different to the ways of writing nowadays. The language was a bit more playful for me, or so I remember it. I came into contact with books containing fairy tales, mostly stories that took place within this region, along the danube or in the woods and mostly involved the devil, a deal and ghosts and other ghastly creatures. Other books were about Myths and Legends from different countries and this was my first contact with nordic legends, stories about pantheons of gods filled with anger, rage, despair and war. Funny thing is still – those stories didn’t horrify me – they amazed me, because they were filled with pictures and well told. When I was small and played with my toys I created my own stories filled with characters and plots from those books. In those playful stories it happened often that the good were bad within and the bad weren’t so bad at all, I twisted everything I read and sometimes went whole different ways by including cowboys and pirates within the same story. Believe me I had fun and I look back to those moments which were filled with naive and playful ideas in a very nostalgic and beautiful way.
Later on I read books that were tied to movies, I read the books to movies like Explorers, The Goonies and the Indiana Jones and Star Wars Franchise. I kinda lost interest in those books quite fast – not that they were written in a bad way which they weren’t but – because I didn’t see a reason to read and see the same story. Therefore I quit reading books for quite some time.
In the middle of the Nineties – thanks to likes of Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman – I rediscovered the fun in reading books. My first love was Moving Pictures by Terry Pratchett and I still love it nowadays. Nearly every book from Terry became a timeless classic – I am one of those guys who loved the Rincewind plots from the start, fell in love with the Witches and in the end the Guards remained like forever in my heart. He was a master storyteller and due to his many references to other wonderful storytellers I fell in love with reading books again. In the first few years I swallowed books like never before. I read many books in german translation and step by step I started reading them in the original, mainly english language. I discovered the works of Neil Gaiman, Dan Simmons, Jasper Fforde, Philipp K. Dick, Philipp Pullman, Nick Hornby, Stephen King, H. P. Lovecraft among others and rediscovered C.S.Lewis, Tolkien and especially JulesVerne and viewed them quite differently this time. In some cases there were about ten years my between the first reading and the later rereading – I kinda grew up in the meantime and found out that there is much more to those books than I first thought.
Since then I craved for new stories, new authors and thanks to Terry and Neil whose books accompanied me on the way and filled times where there was nothing new on the horizon they still delivered wonderful works. I started with the love for Fantasy and Sci-Fi themed books, but later on Crime, Drama and Comedy followed. Nowadays I read them all – if someone tells me about a good book and what it’s all about I do not care about the Genre, if it is a story well told you got me. In the end this is what counts, that’s why we read books – a story that keeps us hooked upon as long as the book takes to read.