This is my very first foray into Road Trip Wednesday, via the lovely folks at YA Highway. Yay! Where’s the confetti?
This week’s topic is What’s your favorite reading memory?
This is a no-brainer. True, I have fond memories of devouring the new Babysitter’s Club book each month or reading Anne of Green Gables for the umpteenth time, but there is one that sticks out in my head as The.Best.Reading.Experience.EVAH!
Let’s go back to the summer of 1999. I was on break from college and was teaching improv to kids at a summer camp. I wandered into the kid’s section of Barnes and Noble and picked up a book titled Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. I had no idea what it was, but it looked interesting, so I bought it. I stayed up reading it the entire night and went back the next morning and bought Chamber of Secrets. I took it to camp with me and read it furiously during my breaks. I would get annoyed whenever I actually had to stop and teach the kids. Oops. I told everyone I knew (no really, EVERYONE I KNEW) about the book, and being that this was 1999, no one had heard of it either. Most people dismissed me — “You want me to read a kid’s book?” — but I turned several friends and family members into rabid fans. I bonded with a fourth grader who I saw carrying the book into the cafeteria one day. He was only on the first book, but when he moved on to the second, he came and sought me out because he desperately wanted to talk to someone about how cool the Nimbus 2001s were, and no one understood what he was talking about. I re-read both books several times that summer, anxiously awaiting the release of the third one.
The third book was released that fall, when I was back at school. I went to the local bookstore the day it was released to buy it but couldn’t find it. I asked a clerk where I could find Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. He looked at me and said, “Harry Who? Never heard of it.”
Oh how times have changed. But man, that was a great summer.