Books for Our Younger Selves

Recently, Misty from The Book Rat asked: what book(s) do you wish you could give to your younger self? Before even listening to Misty’s response, I started to contemplating my answer to the question. While I’m sure Misty meant for us to interpret the question however we wanted, one of the first things I decided was that it would have to be something that was published/in print when I was a kid. So books that were published after I reached adulthood were automatically eliminated in my mind.

So then I started thinking about the person I was when I was a kid. I know my tastes and preferences now are very different than they were when I was younger. Things generally considered “geeky,” such as comic books and the science fiction/fantasy genres were mostly foreign to me, with a few notable exceptions. I attribute this mostly to the fact that I grew up amongst people who don’t appreciate geeky things. I was the kid who put off reading Harry Potter because I didn’t think the books were something I’d like. Yup. I’m now kicking myself for that decision. I was, however, a bit of a theatre nerd when I was a teen. Ok, I was very much a theatre nerd when I was a teen. Does that count for something?

One of the things I’ve been asking myself is if I had been exposed to more speculative fiction at a younger age, would I have liked it then as much as I do now? Or did I need to go through the phases I went through as a kid in order to become the person I am now? Unfortunately, we’ll never know the answers to those questions. Still, I can’t help but hope I had gotten into more geeky things when I was younger. If nothing else, I’d feel much less behind the times than I do right now.

But anyway. One of the very first things to pop into my mind when I read this question (besides Harry Potter) was Tamora Pierce. Anything by Tamora Pierce. She’s been writing since before I was born (I think) so some of her books would’ve been available when I was a kid. The sad thing is that I didn’t even know who Tamora Pierce was when I was a kid. In fact, I was an adult the first time I recall hearing/reading the name Tamora Pierce! Thus far, the only books of hers that I’ve read of Tamora Pierce’s has been The Song of the Lioness quartet, but I’ve enjoyed those books so much that I went and bought copies of many of her other books as well. I’m fairly confident that I’ll enjoy Tamora Pierce’s other books. (I should probably do a Tamora Pierce read-a-thon at some point. Hmm).

In any case, I wish I could give my younger self The Song of the Lioness quartet or really any of Tamora Pierce’s books that were around when I was a kid. I’d tell myself that fantasy can be for me, that Pierce writes heroines who are capable, that I’d be able to relate to them. I think these books could’ve helped me get through some of the things I went through as a kid. And I think Pierce’s books would’ve made a nice segue into the geeky things I like as an adult.
Ironically, Misty’s pick was also Pierce’s The Song of the Lioness quartet. But I came up with my response before listening to Misty, I swear! Great minds think alike, I guess.

So, dear reader, what book(s) do you wish you could give your younger self and why?


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Meet the Author

I’m Joss Arden, or just Joss. In the interest of full disclosure, that’s a pseudonym. I’m a woman in my early 30s originally from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Summing myself up into a few sentences for something like this always prove difficult. I’m a work in progress. Some of my interests include speculative fiction, books, and the performing arts.

2 comments… add one
  • Misty @ The Book Rat Jul 8, 2014, 2:55 pm

    “did I need to go through the fazes I went through as a kid in order to become the person I am now?” <—- Is exactly what makes this question so fascinating to ponder.
    Also, I love that numerous people have said the SoL series! =D

    • Joss Jul 8, 2014, 4:43 pm

      People totally should be talking about the SoL series. It’s too awesome to ignore.

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