Saturday, April 10, 2010

Snob no more

As an English major and now English teacher, I have found that I've often shied away from the trendy books and series that make their way into the hands of my students (and friends). Lit snob, some would call it. It wasn't so much that I didn't think those books were worthy of my reading attention; it was more the problem that there are so many tried and true classics out there that I haven't read that it felt like a sin to read something else.

In the last six months, however, I have dove right into two book series that I fell in love with. The Twilight saga and, more recently, the Harry Potter books. I have already said the good and the bad about Twilight, namely that although Meyer may not be in the running for the best writing, she definitely can put together a good love story. Her creation of the perfect guy (vampire Edward Cullen) left all of us wanting more!

Harry Potter was my most recent conversion, and I absolutely loved the books. Family and friends of mine have been long time fans, and I wished I would have listened to their advice and read the books long ago. (Although, reading Twilight and HP over the last few months has been something to help get me through a difficult time...so maybe it was all perfect timing, afterall!) My spring break was spent reading the last couple of books, and I watched in awe as Rowling completed the seven-book story, bringing it together in a way I did not expect. It was beautiful, enthralling, and deeply spiritual. (I don't want to say too much, in case there are any late-comers like me reading this.) I will say this, however: many friends of mine assured me that the HP series was influential in their faith, and I completely agree. I am more amazed at the Lord right now than anything, that he uses even simple fiction books (and books about taboo topics!) to enlighten people about spiritual truths.

So, I have learned a valuable lesson. The classics are classics for a reason: they are beautifully written, have incredible plots, and were often something new for their time. But there is something wonderful about reading a book written in our generation for our generation, especially one that makes you think...this book just might pass the test of time.

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