I like to take a journey when I read. Not the type of journey intended for every reader by the author (though I do of course enjoy this, obviously), but a journey that connects every book I read; a journey that takes me from one tome to the next. A never-ending link, so to speak. Here’s an example of the latest three books in the chain:
- Ox-Tales: Fire – A collection of short stories compiled by Oxfam with fire as the theme. Works come from renowned authors such as Mark Haddon, John Le Carre, and Jeanette Winterson. The story I enjoyed most was Dog Days by Winterson.
- Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit – And so I moved onto Winterson’s debut novella, a semi-autobiographical tale on her growing up in the north, raised by Pentecostal Christian adoptive parents, whilst coming to terms with her homosexuality.
- God – I visited my friend recently while he convalesces at home from a back operation and while there he recommended Alexander Waugh’s biography on God. Given Winterson’s religious upbringing it seemed fitting as the next choice in reading material. And then, when I noticed a line of praise from Winterson on the cover of the book, my choice was sealed. My friend had no idea what I was reading, and yet unbeknownst to him, at that moment he’d provided me the next link in my chain.
As I continue to read Waugh’s book I have no idea what I’ll move onto next, but that’s part of the excitement. For me at least, anyway. Sad? Maybe. I’m sure the next link will materialise itself to me soon. It always does.
Everything happens for a reason.