I have been in love with reading all my life. Settling down in a quiet, sunny spot or in bed with a book is luxury to me. Several years ago, I set out to read the winners of the Man Booker Award. One of my favorite books was Aravind Adiga’s White Tiger, a book that I would not have chosen on my own because the protagonist was so unfamiliar to me and, at first, nearly repulsive—but he seduced me. And I’m in awe of John Banville and his masterful use of a vocabulary that leaves me feeling bereft with the paucity of the words I can call on.
Many of the books gave me moments—I’m sure you’ve experienced them—when I paused simply to repeat a sentence or paragraph that captured an emotion or memory or truth so precisely that I had stopped breathing.
As a child, I believed that being a writer was a magical calling—a little like being a shaman who could reveal the past, the future, the meaning of a life. I look for that shaman when I read. If just once, for one reader, I could be that shaman, it would all be worthwhile.