Although I was an English major and am an English teacher, I am ashamed to say that my list of books I've read in the last few years is pretty short. It's not that I don't love reading -- I truly do -- but it seems with teaching, I never felt like I had time to read novels, so I just didn't. I suppose I read other things, but the novels and stories I read were always those I was teaching.

I've tried to get back into reading the last few months, and I thought I'd share what I have been reading, and what I've liked.

First, I read the Twilight series. Twice. (And I read Eclipse three times.) Now, this is somewhat embarrassing, but I owe a lot to Twilight. Getting into those books helped rekindle my love for a good romantic story. And I am not ashamed to say I thoroughly enjoy the Twilight saga, both the books and films. It reminds me of falling in love and being in love, and it also reminds me that there is more to our world than meets the eye. (No, I don't believe vampires are in our midst...)

I followed that up with a Sherlock Holmes novel, The Hound of the Baskervilles. This came after watching Robert Downey, Jr.'s Holmes in the theatre. The book was very good, very unlike the film, but I enjoyed both. It is--just as it's been hailed--a true detective novel, so it was fun trying to solve the mystery, although I wasn't a very good detective.

I finally broke down and read Wuthering Heights. I say broke down because I had been avoiding this book for a long time. I had begun it a number of times but never finished it. It was absolutely horrible...and then absolutely wonderful. I think that is a sign of a great author. She made me hate her main characters so much, yet I couldn't put the book down to find out how they would turn out, and then I was shocked to find some justice and redemption in the end. That is what I love in a novel: a good redemptive story. (For a really good redemptive story, read Jane Eyre.)

And then, I jumped on a bandwagon...about ten years too late. I finished the first Harry Potter book today. I know, it's a shock I hadn't read them, but I just wasn't interested. I thoroughly enjoyed it and found it funny and interesting. And I hear the next books just get better and better.

I'm working my way through Ethan Frome right now. I think I've read this before, but it's hard to tell. Teaching American Lit, I've read so many research papers on American novels that sometimes it's difficult to know what I've actually read myself. The author, Edith Wharton, is one of my favorites, and I do like this book, although it's a bit depressing.

If there is a book out there that you love and I need to read, let me know what it is!


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