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Re-igniting a reading passion

One of the advantages of being laid up with a bum leg is having the opportunity to read books and periodicals to your heart’s content.

No sooner had I been released from the hospital after hip surgery than I was the recipient of an armful of books, some loaned and others given as gifts. The donors realized more than I that they would help fill the long hours between rehabilitation and getting back on my two feet.

Actually, they have been a godsend, in addition to rekindling a passion for reading. We have always had a diverse supply of reading materials at our house; however, it often got pushed side simply because time constraints prevented them from being read and enjoyed.

Reading was something I enjoyed immensely as a youngster growing up during the World War II years. Comic books were very popular and most kids collected them and swapped them with friends after they had been read. I collected and read every Zane Grey paperback I could get my hands on as a teenager. The Junior high school I attended had a small library located in the principal’s office. It was limited to about 300 books and periodicals and you had to wait two to three weeks to check out a book that you had not read. In recent days, I’ve enjoyed reading about a dozen books, ranging from fiction to nonfiction. I would recommend them to a casual or serious reader. A brief list follows:

The Innocent Man by John Grissom: A nonfiction story of small-town justice gone awry. An ex-major league baseball player is wrongly convicted of rape and murder and lands on death row.

Presidential Courage by Michael Beschloss: A vivid account of how nine U.S. presidents withstood political firestorms and helped change America.

Voices from Alabama by J. Mack Lofton, Jr.: A collections of real-life stories as told by Alabamians.

The Help by Kathryn Stockett: The author reveals the secrets of black women who cooked, kept house and helped raise white babies in the rural south in the 1960s but yet couldn’t use the same bathrooms as their employers.

The Great Divide by T. Davis Bunn: A fictional thriller that unravels a web of greed and deceit stretching from Washington, D.C. to Europe and Asia.

Clif Knight is a staff writer for the Hartselle Enquirer.