Day #8 – What book are you most grateful for?
One of the advantages of the 30 Days of Gratitude Prompts is that they help us realize how lucky we are. Here in the United States we have easy access to books and reading materials of all kinds. Public libraries offer residents a wealth of resources: fiction, non-fiction, reference, periodicals, newspapers, manuscripts, maps, CDs, DVDs, and the list goes on. The First Amendment guarantees our right to read whatever we want; the government cannot choose for us through censorship.
I developed a love of reading as a child that has stayed with me into adulthood. Once again, when asked which book I’m most grateful for, it’s difficult to choose only one. I’ve read so many that delighted and enlightened me. Between many text books, Bible stories, leisure reading, and others, I’ve learned a lot about life.
One of my earliest favorites was Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird. I saw the movie when I was ten years old and read the book a few years later. The dramatic courtroom scene left a lasting impression that shaped my feelings regarding race relations and equality. It helped me realize that some people are unfair and dishonest, while others are trustworthy and believe in justice for everyone. Atticus Finch, the children’s father and attorney fighting for a black man wrongly accused of rape, became one of the best known protagonists in American literature, as well as my hero.
Because of my age at the time, I identified with the children in the story: brother and sister duo, Scout and Jem, and their neighborhood friend, Dill.The storyline had quite an impact on me. It takes place during the Great Depression and I was fascinated by the world they lived in. I also enjoyed watching how they entertained themselves and interacted with each other and the adults around them. The reclusive neighbor Boo Radley mystified them and was subject to their wild speculation. Convinced that he would harm them if given the chance, they learn a valuable lesson about judging people based on unfounded fears rather than facts.
The memorable characters and compelling storylines made this novel the classic that it is. I absolutely love the book and movie version and am thankful for the wisdom and sense of justice it taught me. I’m a better person for having read it and that’s truly something to be grateful for!