Monday, August 31, 2009
What's The Point Of Buying A Book?
I’m doing a very quick survey for a publisher on reluctant readers and I was horrified to find out that one of my relatives who I thought had a nodding acquaintance with books was no reader at all.
In fact, his views on books, and willingness to pass those views to a child, made me consider that he's not as sensible as I thought he was.
The following is a scene took place this past weekend while we were visiting my family in Phokeng. Baby was just chilling, reading AIR HEAD – BEING NIKKI, by Meg Cabot.
Adult Male Relative: Why do you read so much?
Baby: Because I enjoy it.
AML: [grunt]And what do you do with the book once you’ve finished reading it?
Baby: I put it on my bookshelf. Then whenever I want to read it again, I can do so.
AML: I really don’t understand the point of buying a book. Once you’ve read it, you know the story and there’s no point of reading it again. It's a waste of money, and you might as well throw it away afterwards.
"How can you learn anything new if you never read," I wanted to ask him. I would have understood if he at least non-fiction in a variety of subjects, but he told Baby that he only reads material that has to do with his job.
I decided not to interfere while Baby tried to explain why reading was important to her, and why good books were worth reading again. Sadly enough, AML blew off her explanation, saying he had better things to do with his time and money than spend them on books.
Now keep in mind that AML is in his early twenties. I shudder to think about his spending the rest of his life - and it could be a long life - never reading a book unless he has to. Grrrrrrrrrrr!
OK, now tha I got that out of my system, my question to you as a reader, writer, blogger and parent is this: Put yourself in Baby’s shoes. How would you have answered the question?