One of the hardest part of losing my mom has been going through her books. "Avid" or "voracious" don't even begin to describe my mom as a reader. There were boxes and boxes and boxes of books. Literally, hundreds.
Books are precious to me. I'm a writer. I'm a reader. Books have been my safe place my entire life. The idea of getting rid of Mom's book is difficult just from that standpoint. Add to that the fact I know they were a comfort for her, and it becomes almost unbearable.
Several well-meaning friends suggested that I take them Half-Price Books, but that just wasn't feasible. I came to terms with the fact I couldn't (and shouldn't) keep all of them, but it was important to me they go to a good home.
Some were non-negotiable. Mom and I shared a love for Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum series and J.D. Robb's In Death series. Before she got sick, Mom had started replacing her worn paperbacks with hardcovers of both those collections. I am keeping those...forever.
Some were easy. Mom's best friend is a fan of Dean Koontz. He scares the fire out of me. So, those got boxed up and sent away with a quickness. Dawn=Big Fat Chicken.
The rest took a lot of contemplation. My first step was to sort out what I knew I'd never read. Books need to be read. If I hold on to them just because I can't let go, then someone else is missing out on the chance to read them. Most of those have been rehomed to people who will appreciate them.
That left what's on these shelves...and tucked behind the chair. That's where I came up with my reading challenge for this year.
I will read at least one book by each of the authors Mom adored.
I've never read James Patterson. Mom loved ALL of his books. I think there are three different series back there. I plan to read the first in each one to see what I like.
There is also a whole shelf of Catherine Coulter. Another is full of Patricia Cornwell. One shelf is split between Jayne Ann Krentz and Linda Howard. Another one holds Robert B. Parker, Harlan Coben, and Sara Paretsky.
So many authors that I need to explore for myself. The ones I love as much as Mom did, I'll keep. The others will be given to a good home.
There is no way I can read all of them. I have to, you know, sleep. I'm open to suggestions. If you are familiar with any of these authors, I'd love to know where to start (and what to avoid!)
I'll keep you updated. Happy reading!