Looking through the archives of Booking Through Thursday today, since I don’t really have a good answer for today’s question. Instead I looked backwards a few weeks and found this:
I have a couple of answers to this. Firstly, library books. I can’t even tell you what the first book I checked out from the library was, except to say that it had to have been a school library book. I know that I LOVED non-fiction books when I was little. In elementary school I was always checking out learning books… about dinosaurs, about foxes, about planets. Anything that struck my fancy, I’d be in the non-fic department, burying myself in learning about it. I wish I still had that love for non-fiction today… I need to forcibly make myself read non-fiction. I still find it fascinating, I just tend to blip it out of my mind when I’m in a bookstore. There are so many fake stories I want to know! Le sigh.
I think the first book I ever really bought was at a Scholastic book fair with what I believe was a couple of dollars from my mom. I was in either the third or fourth grade. I bought Alice in Wonderland. I had fallen in love with the live-action movie of it and Through the Looking Glass, and I already had a beautiful copy of Through the Looking Glass that I’d been given for Christmas, so I wanted to read the first book first, naturally. It was just a trade paperback and not very pretty, as opposed to my copy of TtLG, which was gorgeously bound with inserts of painted illustrations sprinkled throughout it, but it did the job so far as the story goes. I remember being mesmerized by the idea that you could make words on a page actually form a picture of sorts, and Wonderland is still deeply embedded in my imagination, as I’m sure it is in many peoples’. I’m delighted it’s getting the attention in new fiction that it is today.
The first book I bought at an actual bookstore was Just as Long as We’re Together by Judy Blume in the fifth grade. I’d borrowed it from the library after a friend suggested it—I’d already been a Judy Blume fan, what with the Fudge books, etc.—and thus started my life-long love of Young Adult books. I loved the book so much that I then had to, had to, HAD to buy the book for myself, along with whatever other Judy Blume books I could. She is still undoubtedly one of my favorite authors, and a huge inspiration to me.