Many people talk about reading for escape. I have found that books don’t pull me away from life so much as they propel me into life. Reading gives me a life in different places, different eras, different skins. Books have made me more tolerant and more adventuresome. Books have made me pay attention to those around me, and they have made me more alive.
I am in my sixties now, and my life is a series of things that I would like to do again. Not differently, maybe, just again. I went to Rice University at seventeen, married Peter at twenty, assumed that I was all set at twenty-three with an MA from Texas A&M and a plan to teach there. Returning to Rice for a PhD just confirmed that teaching English was the only profession for me. Then life curved towards Brownwood and Howard Payne in 1978, and here I am nearly forty years later, the senior member of the HPU faculty. Where did the time go? Three amazing children, two grandchildren with potential, over 7,000 students, more than 35,000 graded papers, four trips abroad including a whole semester in London, over 4,000 fun lunches with my colleagues, countless cups of coffee and tea—and books, books, books!
Books I recommend
The River of Doubt: Theodore Roosevelt’s Darkest Journey by Candace Millard
The Botany of Desire by Michael Pollan
George Eliot: The Last Victorian by Kathryn Hughes
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Stoner by John Williams