Reading in the New Year

unknownA new year and a perfect opportunity to think about a fresh start. Whether it’s joining the digital detox craze, signing up for gym membership or, an excellent one that I heard from a friend recently, pledging to do more things that make you happy, the start of January is a wonderful time to turn over a new leaf. In our house, we’re loving our no screen time after 9pm (though don’t always quite keep to it!) but it’s definitely allowing for more book time which can only be a good thing.
Talking of books, what compelled me to write this blog post was something that I re-read over the Christmas holidays. To Kill a Mockingbird has long been one of my favourites and I have read it many times over. I periodically find myself drawn to it again, to refresh my memories of Scout, Jen and Atticus’ wise words. I’ve always been fascinated by how the reading process evolves – a first reading is all about the story, what will happen next; a second reading allows you to get to know the characters in more depth, learn their mannerisms and their ways; a third reading really embeds the essence of a book; and so it goes on. As my 13-year-old says, with each reading, you notice new details and appreciate added depths.
I also find that I never tire of enjoying the brilliance of writers such as Harper Lee:
“Atticus was right. One time he said you never really know a man until you stand in his shoes and walk around in them.”
Written in 1960, but as relevant today as it was then, I often paraphrase these words. I think we could all add a bit of empathy to our list of good intentions for 2019.

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