Read to me

This post was written by Friday blogger Annie Reid.

Over at the Guardian, Janet Lee Carey finds healing in the act of reading aloud to her seriously ill teenage son.

This reminded of how much, in the past, I’ve loved reading books aloud and being read to, not just as a child, but as an adult.

Sure, sometimes we’ll have a round of John Donne (“The Flea”)or Andrew Marvell (“To His Coy Mistress”) before bedtime, but nothing beats the sustained mutual attention of an entire novel. It’s the imaginative pleasures of reading, with the communal pleasure of participating in that with someone else. And of course, I credit being read aloud to as a child for getting me all fucked up about books for the rest of my life. Thanks, Mom!

Once I even found odd comfort getting lost in our mutual past, via Carl Sagan and Ann Druyan’s marvelous book on evolution, Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors (whose sexier SIPs include “female dominance hierarchy” and “mutator genes”, not the mention the thankfully SI “potato washing”).

Some books are no doubt better than others for adults to read aloud to one another. Any ideas? Send them along to annie at maud newton dot com.


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