During the Fully Booked Junior Book Crew (JBC) sessions this past summer, we asked some of the participants about what books changed their lives. Here’s an entry from Marj, about the Percy Jackson series. This is part 1 of 3 entries dedicated to our favorite demigod!
Many books can change one’s life in different ways. A title doesn’t have to be a spiritual or a self-help one to change your outlook. A fantasy book, a history book, a chick-lit title, or maybe even an instructional book can do the trick. It can be anything, anything at all. But it all comes down to one thing, one reason why you say that a certain book changed your life: it inspired you.
When I was in 3rd grade, my mom got me into reading chapter books. One of the very first ones I read was the Madison Finn series. It didn’t really change my life (no offense to Laura Dower). It was just a phase, an “I-had-no-choice-but-to-read-it-because-my-mom-told-me-to” phase, as I would like to call it. But it definitely sparked my hobby of reading.
The actual book that really changed my life was Percy Jackson and The Olympians: The Lightning Thief. It’s a pretty common choice, but that book really changed everything. When I read the first page, I felt like I had been thrown into a deep dark chasm of pure bliss and imagination without a way out. Once I start one of them, I never stop. And ever since I read that book, I’ve been obsessed. I go crazy and emotional over something that never happened in real life. I’ve been obsessing over people who don’t even exist. But I still wouldn’t stop reading.
Books, in general, have become a massive part of my life. They helped me through all the pains: boredom, sadness, noise, mindblock, and everything else that makes life a pain in the neck. They helped me make friends, expand my vocabulary, sharpened my imagination and most of all, these stories completed me.
Looking for that certain book takes time, too. It took me two years until I finally read The Lightning Thief. You can’t always trust someone else’s review and opinion on a certain title. You can’t know what’s really in it until you turn the page and read. Maybe a title was actually your type of read and you just missed it because of how it looked on the outside. As the saying goes, ‘Don’t judge a book by its cover.’ So just sit back, relax, grab a book, and you never know that maybe what you’re reading now or the one you never plan to read is the one that will change your life for the better.
The Fully Booked Junior Book Crew is a summer workshop that focuses on reading, writing and creative play with book lovers between 11-16 years old. If you’d like to be part of the next one and are in that age range, check back with us in February-March 2015! We recruit during those times