“Some Books Are So Familiar That Reading Them Is Like Being Home Again”

As part of my personal  2018 1/12 Challenge, I am aiming to read 24 books this year, which I know doesn’t sound like much, but its a lot compared to the 0 books I’ve been reading since I had Wee One. I’m doing the reading challenge on Goodreads (Are you, too? Check out my list and let me know what books are good!) and thank God they permit rereading books, because otherwise, I don’t know if I would have finished. The whole Harry Potter series has brought me a long way to my goal.

Just this weekend, there was another book I read, one I haven’t thought of in 25 years.

I’m taking a Coursera class on developing characters and had an assignment to write a third character interacting with two from a story. The two that came strongest to mind were Kit and Nat from the Witch of Blackbird Pond.

I first read it in 4th or 5th or 6th grade, like many of us, I’m sure, and I read it dozens of times thereafter. It wasn’t my normal kind of story; while I like history and historical fiction, I never liked American History before the Revolutionary War. But the writing was so simple and compelling, and it was one of the first books that I really felt like I got lost in.

I remember passing notes with my best friend about the book; as tweens, we squealed over the pure selfless love between John and Mercy – love so strong that when he finally broke out of captivity, his first thought was to go to her. I was so proud of Nat for getting his own ship and asking if that might be enough for Kit’s uncle to provide for her. I loved reading about Hannah and the peace at her house. I loved how she spoke. I loved the Meadow. I loved the food that was shared – blueberry cake, apple tart, popcorn – simple humble food, but when even just a little is shared with love, it seems like a lot.

Reading it again as an adult, I could still see it through my younger self’s eyes. I haven’t been in that place for so long, but reading the book felt like being home.

Do you have any books or stories like that? What did you like to read most as a kid?


9 thoughts on ““Some Books Are So Familiar That Reading Them Is Like Being Home Again”

  1. I have also read that one both as a kid and again as an adult. Island of the Blue Dolphins is the other one that comes to mind that I read so often as a kid and then saw it through new eyes as an adult- but still loved it just as much.

    1. It took me a second to think about that book and if I had read it. I know I heard a lot about it and think I did like it, but I didn’t read it again and again like I did Witch of Blackbird Pond. I should look it up, though, and see what memories come up. Thanks for the suggestion!

    1. I don’t think I ever read that. But it’s set in the Ozarks and I’m from Missouri so we should have! Did you read it to or with your kids when they had to read it?

    1. I adore that series. But I didn’t read it until I was in college, so I don’t have any youthful memories attached to it. I just have memories of girls talking about it in The Babysitters Club books. 🙂

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