Today I'm so happy to introduce my lovely friend AJ Nuest with her Books and Holidays Guest Post.
Summer is nearly upon us in the Midwestern US, which means it’s time once again for my family to plan their yearly vacation. My husband and I schedule most of our days off during this three-month break simply because it’s easier on our kids—they don’t have worry about missing school, have the hassle of makeup homework or stress over their lack of participation in a sporting event. The days are generally more relaxed and I can usually benefit from their eager assistance when packing for the trip.
It’s safe to say, one could categorize my family unit as the “outdoorsy” types. Most often when we set off, the road leads us somewhere we can enjoy nature. None of us are the type to sit around, which means we prefer hiking, canoeing, biking, swimming, fishing, heck, we’ve even been known to go zip-lining as a family. Like, for real. We like to explore places we’ve never been, eat the local cuisine, chat with the folks who live there and really get a sense of the culture and environment.
But, without fail, regardless of where we go or for how long, the best part of these trips is that we are together as a family. We unplug from our electronic devices, leave the internet at home, and Mom…oh, glorious heavens above…gets to take a book. Not a Kindle…a book. Ahhh…
There is just nothing better. The buttery texture of worn pages beneath my fingers. The weight of the spine in my lap. The crinkle and aroma of glue whenever I flip back the cover. Even the width of the book in my hand as I carry it from place to place makes me happy.
As an author of fantasy romance, it should be no surprise I choose this same genre when it comes to reading for pleasure. Besides being in love with sword-wielding heroes, mysterious creatures and the occasional purveyor of magic, when I’m away from my own characters, I’m given the sublime opportunity to broaden my horizons by reading other authors who dabble with world building and lore. Every time I read another fantasy novel, I learn something new…something important I can transpose into my own work. But there’s another, more secret, reason I select these types of books for my much-needed time off. You see, within the pages of a fantasy romance, the characters are usually off on a grand adventure, exploring new places while they work out the answers to defeating some insurmountable odds. For me, to be on horseback riding through the forest with my family, while the characters I’m reading are doing the same thing, makes both experiences complete and total magic. I get to live my vacation…twice.
Now, if I could just get my family to agree to a vacation in Europe, exploring castles, walking the English countryside, perhaps backpacking through Ireland or even visiting the many museums of Paris…that, my friends, will be the day I’ve died and gone to paradise…as long as I have the right book! LOL
What about you? What’s your favorite part of reading while on vacation?
Thank you AJ for such a great post!