Just like the friends you had and the kind of sports or school activities you were involved in while growing up, books define you. I have always been a book lover since the very first day that I learned to read. To me, it was the secret passage that opened up a world of magic, possibilities and imaginary wonders. All you needed were the pages in front of you and time…time to enjoy the adventure, time to savor the journey. Things have certainly changed from when I was a kid and I may not be flipping through actual pages but rather swiping my finger on an electronic screen, but the end result is still the same: Reading is pure magic.
Recently, I was reminded of this when I came across the series of books written by Barbara Conklin on www.goodreads.com. If you were a young girl growing up in the 80s, like I was, you probably remember Barbara Conklin. She was a young adult author and she wrote about teenage girls in the throes of first love. What young girl doesn’t want to read about that!!??
I know that I sure did. I read every single one of her series, simply devouring them because I could identify with the main character. You see, they were just like me: dealing with parents, growing pains, boy craziness and everything else that comes with being a young girl who’s just trying to muddle her ways through the world. Her main characters were strong young women, smart and ambitious, beautiful inside and out.
And I wanted to be just like them.
It was also the first time that I realized what I wanted to do for a living. Now Barbara Conklin certainly wasn’t a Hemingway or a Steinbeck but she did what every author hopes to do when someone reads her work: she captured my interest. From that, I caught the “reading bug” and I have never recovered. Since then I tend to read everything from the classics to the campy, from the sentimental to the “laugh out loud,” from the mystical to the “real life.” And now that my teenage years have come and gone quite some time ago, I have yet to slow down…and I don’t intend to either.
So, thank you, Barbara Conklin, for giving me a gift-my love of reading. It’s something I hope to pass down to my daughter. In fact, I just ordered your entire series! I can’t wait to share them with her. I’m sure she’ll find the covers outdated and a bit cheesy but, I know that, once she turns to the first page and starts reading, she’ll find that secret passage and discover the magic that is reading.