by Maria Schulz
Read Across America kicked off National Reading Month with its annual celebration of all things Dr. Seuss (since the good Dr.’s birthday was March 2). This means that PARP (Parents Are Reading Partners), your local PTA, and teachers all across America are celebrating this month with classic tales like Green Eggs and Ham, Horton Hears a Who, The Cat in the Hat, Hop on Pop, The Lorax, and many more of Dr. Seuss’s wonderful books.
My favorite Suessian take on life is How The Grinch Stole Christmas. I totally relate to the Grinch and his thoughts on The Who’s in Whoville, loud and annoying little kids, and other assorted Christmas craziness…but that’s probably just because I worked in retail for so long.
But books aren’t just for kids. Reading has always been something that simultaneously relaxed me and excited me. As Dr. Seuss said in another one of his books, “oh, the places you’ll go!” I can see the four corners of the world without ever leaving my couch as long as I’ve got a great book in my hands.
One of my friends (a dedicated PARP-ette, PTA mom and fellow book lover) uses reading to get her off the couch, out of the kitchen, and on the treadmill at the gym. She picks a great book and only gets to enjoy it while racking up the miles. I think this is so clever, although Dr. Seuss could have written a book about me reading on the treadmill called I Just Might Vomit on a Treadmill Named Comet.
For those of you who do not like green eggs and ham, but still love reading, I’ve decided to share some of my favorite reads. Here are a few to get you started.
by Maria Schulz: Here’s a review taken off of Amazon from one of my satisfied readers: “If you are looking for a story that will touch your heart and make you laugh out loud, this book is a winner. With each chapter you will feel as if you are right in the middle of the hysterical antics of this fun loving family and it will leave you wishing you could be an honorary member of the Lagalante clan. I sure did!.”
The Alchemist by Paulo Coehlo: Here is the story of an Andalusian shepherd boy who seeks travel, treasure, and a life of adventure. What he finds is life-changing wisdom about learning to listen to your heart and following your dreams. It’s a beautiful story and a quick read. Win/win
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins: this book made me forget that I was packed into the cattle car known as the friendly skies, or that my 40 minute flight lasted 2 ½ hours. Who can say what’s real about other people’s lives, what’s the truth—and which people you can really trust?
Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng: there are three children in the Lee family, but only one of them is truly cherished. When death strikes, the Lees must confront all the things they thought they knew, and the things they never even imagined.
The Rosie Effect by Graeme Simsion: here’s the sequel to the bestselling book, The Rosie Project. Don Tillman loves routines, stability, and the status quo…but he also loves Rosie, a wildcard if ever there was one. Now Don is in for a surprise he hasn’t planned for: he’s about to become a father! Funny, adorable, and entertaining.
Diary of a Mad Diva by Joan Rivers: this woman is still cracking me up with her irreverence, wit, and outrageous commentary on life, death, and everything in between. From the dedication page to the acknowledgements, Rivers keeps on serving up big laughs in this hilarious “diary.” I liked Diary of a Mad Diva so much I had to read it twice.
We Were Liars by E. Lockhart: this quiet little book will pull you in and keep you riveted to your seats (or treadmills) until you get to the very last page. It’s about cousins and friends, greed and rivalry, joy and anger…and the lies we tell each other, and ourselves.
The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein: this one’s for all the dog lovers I’ve ever known. At times funny and sad, heart wrenching and uplifting, it’s told from the family dog, Enzo’s, point of view. Pet lovers and non-pet-lovers will get a lot out of this beautiful story of love, loss, and family that is beautifully written and absolutely absorbing.
A Dog’s Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron: from the author of 8 Simple Rules for Marrying My Daughter, here comes another great book that follows a dog’s journey through many lives as he contemplates what his true purpose may be. This funny, sweet book delves into topics like love, compassion, and the universal quest for meaning. It’s a quick read too, and well worth it.
Recipe: 9 Hot Drinks
When I curl up on the couch with a great book, imagining myself in the heads of kings or queens, Every Man or Every Woman, I love a hot drink. From Mulled Apple Cider to Mexican spiced hot chocolate and Easy Chai Tea, you’ll find lots of great choices that you can make as decadent or diet-friendly as you like. They’re perfect for sipping and savoring as you get lost in a great book. Enjoy!
So, Hungry Lifers…what’s your favorite Dr. Seuss book? Is there a great book you’d like to share? What’s your favorite hot drink? Please leave a comment and let us all know. Thanks.