Top Ten Tuesday: Sensory reading experiences
My memory is pretty strange. I might not be able to remember the main character’s name or exactly what happened in the plot, but the likelihood is I’ll remember where I read the book (and sometimes even where I bought it from!). These ten books are ones which are intrinsically linked to a location in my mind: just thinking about each of these books catapults me back in time to a snapshot of me reading it.
10) Wing Jones by Katherine Webber
I read Wing Jones on the bus on the way to a Taking Back Sunday concert. When the bus arrived I only had about fifty pages left, but I couldn’t read during the concert (I would have felt rude, plus it was far too loud!) so instead I just thought about the story the entire time.
9) Girl Online by Zoella
I’d heard so many things about Girl Online, but had no intention of reading it. I was at work in one of the smaller community libraries when someone returned a copy of it, and I decided to read the first chapter to see what all the fuss was about… Surprisingly, it hooked me, and I ended up reading 100 pages at the desk! It wasn’t brilliant, but it was a quick and easy read that I flew through, finishing it at home that night.
8) Other Breakable Things by Kelley York and Rowan Altwood
I read this while walking home on one of the hottest days last year. I’d stayed overnight at my (extremely pregnant) friend’s house, letting her put false eyelashes on me for the first – and only – time, so I was pretty drowsy as I was stumbling along, and this book was a nice comfort.
7) Countless by Karen Gregory
I was halfway through reading Countless when I met Karen Gregory last year. I clearly remember getting back on the bus after the event and diving back into my copy… And promptly bursting into tears. The story is so emotional that it’s impossible to control yourself in public!
6) The Longest Ride by Nicholas Sparks
The Longest Ride by Nicholas Sparks reminds me of one of the longest bus rides I’ve ever taken. The National Express coach was packed so I couldn’t sit by my mum, and I had a really bad cold so sitting next to a stranger wasn’t the greatest way to spend the day. I remember dragging myself through this book, snuffling and coughing and trying not to make a nuisance of myself.
5) True Born by L.E. Sterling
Might as well put most of my bus related memories together! I read True Born on the way home from seeing Macklemore and Ryan Lewis two years ago. I’d finished my book on the way to the concert and hadn’t decided what to try next, but the starkly beautiful cover of this novel was stuck in my head, so I couldn’t resist diving into my NetGalley copy.
4) Here be Dragons by Sarah Mussi
Here Be Dragons is another book which I associate with walking. The copy I was sent wasn’t compatible with my Kindle app, so for a few weeks I was walking to town reading on my phone through a PDF reader, which involved a lot of frantic swiping and zooming in and out. I might have enjoyed Here Be Dragons more if I’d given up and just read it at home on my computer, but I was a busy bee and didn’t have the time!
3) A Quiet Kind of Thunder by Sara Barnard
I’ve read a lot of books led in bed at home, but something about A Quiet Kind of Thunder was so special that it’s the only one I closely associate with reading in bed. I loaded up the Kindle app right before I was meant to be going to sleep and led there with one eye open, reading the first half of the book in record time. Every time I think of this book it transports me back to my old bed, snuggled up under my duvet and a few blankets, and this is a very comforting book so that’s a nice association to have.
2) The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski
I read The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski in a hotel room in Weymouth, where I was on holiday with my mum for a week. She wasn’t feeling well so decided to have a lie in, so I whipped out my Kindle – back before I had a phone which could cope with running the app – and steamed through the first quarter of this book. I ended up finishing it on the bus on the way back to Swindon, missing out on the beautiful countryside scenes through the window as I fell into this fantastic story.
1) Half Bad by Sally Green
I also read Half Bad when I went to Weymouth, but it was the year before the aforementioned trip. When I started Half Bad I was in the middle of a reading slump, so it was the only book I took on our extended weekend away, but by the time we arrived I was halfway through and I ended up finishing it over the course of our holiday. I was reading a library copy – funnily enough, I bought my own copy in a charity shop when we went to Weymouth next year, so Half Bad is fully associated with that seaside location in my mind.
If you’re interested in purchasing any of these books, please consider using my Amazon Affiliate link (found in the book’s title). If you’d like to read more about each book, please click their cover: you’ll be redirected to their Goodreads page.
There are so many other books I could feature, but these are the strongest memories I have of reading. Do you remember books the same way I do, or do you actually remember things about their contents?