Bloganuary Daily Prompt #21: Who is your favorite author and why?
Selecting a favorite author after fifty plus years of reading, how can that be fair? I have read many books, more than I can count, each one a story to tell during a stage in my life. Would it be fair to chose one over the others, when they are all great writers whose words I consumed and loved?
Being an introvert books were my way to engage in a world since engaging with others in daily life was difficult and often non existent as a child. My first memory of a book was the one and only book my dad bought and read to me one time was ‘Eskimo Boy‘ by Pipaluk Freuchen. Why he chose this book I do not know. This book always holds a special place in my heart not for the story but because my dad read it to me.
In first grade I fell in love with ‘Blueberries for Sal‘ by Robert McCoskey. The teacher read it to the class. Later I checked it out of the library, and eventually my dad purchased it for me from the monthly book order forms the schools sent out. I read ‘Blueberries for Sal’ to my children, who did not fall in love with the story as much as I did. This book along with ‘Eskimo Boy’ I gave to my son’s daughter.
Third grade was when I really started reading. A perfect escape from my mom and life in general. A book took me to places and things I loved. I was a horse obsessed young girl, (actually still am) and my third grade teacher, Mrs. Fletcher introduced me to ‘Billy and Blaze‘ series written and illustrated by C.W. Anderson. The stories were good, but what really captured my attention was the illustration, pencil drawings of great detail. I knew then I wanted to draw as excellent as C. W. Anderson. At age fifty, I visited the local library when I moved to where I live to see if they had any of C. W. Anderson’s books just to look at the illustration and see if my memory was correct on how wonderful the illustrations were. I was not disappointed, they were as beautiful as I remembered.
Fourth grade I was introduced to Laura Ingalls Wilder and fell in love with historical novels. I also read all the ‘Black Stallion‘ series by Walter Farley. Magreurite Henry’s books, my favorite is ‘Black Gold‘ and ‘Brighty of the Grand Canyon’. Fourth grade introduced me to ‘Where the Red Fern Grows‘ by Wilson Rawls, ‘The Yearling’ by Margorie Kinnan Rowlings, and ‘Old Yeller’ by Fred Gipson where I realized there is not always a happy ending. Books can bring truth and emotions. And books are better than the movies created from them.
As I continued through school, many books and authors added to my life. As an adult, I fell in love with J.R.R. Tolkien author of ‘The Hobbit’ and ‘Lord of the Rings’ series, by first experience with fantasy. A masterpiece of creation in creating a world, various characters and life, as well as languages and culture.
College brought more books, such as my collection of Spanish authors of stories and poems all written in Spanish. I read Spanish much better than I speak Spanish.
My library holds many non-fictional reference type books on how to care for animals, horses and sheep. I also have a few self-help books. One of my favorites is ‘Who Moved My Cheese?’ by Spencer Johnson. Books dealing with fear, depression and post traumatic stress disorder all to assist me at this stage in life.
When Covid-19 pandemic arrived, my memory was jogged to ‘The Stand’ by Stephen King. I had read a few of Stephen King’s books, the first being ‘The Stand’. For a person who grew up during the Cold War, there appeared to be truth written between the fictional lines. The story of a government virus escaping from a laboratory, and wrecking death on many. Who could not see the correlation. The most enjoyable book I have recently read by Stephen King is ‘On Writing’. The first half of the book tells of his childhood writing experiences, and the latter half on how to improve your writing skills. I enjoyed reading about his brother and him, sometimes wonder how they survived childhood. But then again, I wonder how I survived childhood.
Another recent author is Sara Lark and her Fire Blossom trilogy of historical novels located in New Zealand. At the end of each book she shares the actual historical events she depicts in the story. Since I am the type of reader when I read something interesting, I do research. I have learned some wonderful and fascinating places and events in New Zealand. Too bad I will not fly in a plane, as this is one place I would like to visit and see the places told about in her books as well as see the sheep farms.
Books and authors can influence, shape our lives and take us places we will desire to see. We can enter worlds of fantasy, be freaked out by story lines, figure out change or just relax with a humorous story. But to select just one is just not fair.