This blog was born out of a pure reading passion. I loved reading from the time I was young. My reading then gave birth to writing. All credits to the most incredible woman I have ever met, Jescah Lawrence Endege, my mother. A resilient woman who doesn’t know how to give up. A woman who has raised and educated seven children. That is the woman who introduced me to books at a tender age and that was the beginning of my lifelong affair with books.
For my siblings and, reading never ended in school. The end of each school day was the beginning of storybook time. Mum had a collection of books for us to read. My two elder brothers and I would sit down every evening on our study table to read books that mum bought us. We read book after book. She had a way of telling whether you had been reading or just staring at the book. You could never proceed to the next book until you proved you had done thorough reading and grasped the content of your current book.
Once you completed reading a book, you had to inform her. The two of you would then discuss the book. Just like having a mini book club between you and her. Being the teacher that she is, she would make you narrate what you had read to her. She would then ask random questions from the book to see if you had grasped what you read. If at any point she thought you had not grasped the concept in the book, you would go back and reread. If you did a good narration and answered her questions well, then you qualified to move on to the next read.
She is a disciplinarian.
Reading while pointing at the words with your finger or using an object to move along the sentences as you read was a crime. She taught us how to read silently with only our eyes moving along the sentences. You were not allowed to move your lips as you read unless it was during one of the mini book club sessions when you had to read out excerpts from the book.
It all sounded silly at the time. I didn’t understand why we had to do that. But looking back, I can’t help but thank her for it. It remains priceless and I can never trade anything for such moments. The reading sessions are one of the fondest childhood memories that I hold on till now. It is something I would want to introduce to my children when the time comes.
At that time we were just reading because it was part of the schedule that had been created for us. Had we been given an option, we would have chosen playing instead which is the most automatic thing for children. But mum knew. She knew that she was building an unbreakable foundation for us.
By coincidence, when I enrolled into a boarding school, our teachers of English made us read. Do you remember the famous Pacesetters? Those who grew up in my days know them. They were small story books. I don’t know whether to call them story books or novels, I guess it’s the same thing. These were the books that we read. There are one hundred and thirty tittles in the pacesetter series.
Our school timetables were scheduled in a way that the first forty minutes after lunch were free. A free lesson that comes immediately after lunch, can you imagine. Try and imagine that you are a student and you have free forty minutes and they come just after lunch. what would you do? You know the answer. Well the timetable said free lesson. But that lesson was not free. It was a reading lesson. Forty minutes of reading pacesetters. Reading anything apart from a storybook, that’s how we called them, during the free was a punishable offence.
This is where I got to interact with books like Rich Girl Poor Boy , Pains Of A Maid, Vicious Circle, Evdu My Love and so forth. They are very engaging books and they made reading a fun activity.
As a grownup my reading passion has grown deeper. It is a part of me that I find hard to let go. It is a habit, a reading passion. A habit that was ingrained in me from my childhood days. It comes naturally and I do it unconsciously. It started way back and now I can’t let go.
Chains of habit are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken. Warren Buffett
Every book I see I want to have it. Sometimes just to keep it, often times to read it. Sometimes it’s because I want to learn and other times just for leisure. What amazes me is the fact that when you pick a book to read for leisure purposes, you end up learning something new.
My reading passion is a result of how I was brought up. It is the books that I was made to read in my growing up. It is a habit. That is how I end up picking up one book after another. Every book ignites a new reading passion.