Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Read LOVE, Not Hate

Months and months ago, I decided to make a conscious effort to read more uplifting books, and stop reading so much from the "disturbing" genre.  But it's easy to fall back into and forget my intentions, because there are just so many sick little books out there.

I saw a print ad when I was at the movies a few weeks ago- it just said "coming soon",  but it caught my eye.  The Snowman.  I saw that it was based on a book.
Why was I interested?  Honestly, I'm not really sure.  The title?  The fact that it had to do with snow, and I'm was so sick of  the Texas heat?  Whatever my poor excuse was, I found the book at the library, thinking it would be fun to read the book and then see the movie.  The book got decent reviews on Amazon, so I went ahead and began reading it.

But NO!  It finally dawned on me that I wanted to read less of this kind of crap.  Because I want to fill my head with much less of these kinds of images.  Less hate.  And instead, more love.

So I came to my senses and  abandoned that book after about 50 pages, and instead picked up something else.

The act of reading a book is something that should be carefully considered. I spend hours reading a book.  Even if it's a relatively short one.  So I want the words and the sentiment to WARM my heart, not sicken it.

As soon as I ditched The Snowman, I started on something beautiful instead.
Holding Up the Universe.  Sweet enough for Lucy, so sweet enough for me.
Holding Up the Universe by Jennifer Niven was such a sweet book.  One I was happy to spend several hours of several days reading.  It made me cry a little, and I could imagine the story being turned into a great movie.  There were a few scenes that actually gave me chill bumps, and not because it was scary or disturbing- but because it struck a deep chord.  It's a little bit about being bullied, a little about rising above it, a little about falling in love for the first time, and the awkward parts of life that no matter how much we grow up and mature, we can still remember.  I wasn't "America's Fattest Teen" like the girl in the story, and I didn't suffer from "facial blindness" like the the boy in the story- but I could identify with those feelings we've all had at one time or another about feeling like an outcast, and just wanting to fit in.  I LOVED this story, and I loved the characters in it.

Then, I read another great book.  Like, The Snowman, it's also being made into a movie.  But that's all the two books have in common.  The next book I read actually had a lot in common with Holding Up the Universe instead. 

Wonder is actually another book in the Young Adult fiction genre, that I think may actually be my favorite genre to read currently.  It's also about about bullying, but also about the kindness of others.  And the sweetness that far outweighs the meanness of bullies.  The central character in this story is Auggie, who I think is in about 5th grade.  He has some pretty major facial deformities, and has been home schooled while he went through lots of surgeries.  He's now at a point that his Mom and Dad think public school could benefit him.  It's about his first year in public school- about how kids at first bully him, but then mostly come to love him once they get to know him.  I know who plays all the key characters in the book because I've now seen the movie trailer a few times since the movie comes out next week.

I loved this book too, and I am so looking forward to seeing the movie.  It's got a great message about kindness that we all need right about now.

We all need to read books like these two.  Whether we're Young Adults, or Older Adults.  We all need to read about LOVE, not HATE. I'm so glad I abandoned The Snowman and chose these two books instead.  More love, less hate.  Ricky and Lucy get it.  They're all about LOVE.  They know nothing about hate. 
These two books are about love and compassion.  And that's what Lucy and Ricky are all about too!