I have a feeling that “March Madness” will be the perfect words to describe the atmosphere of this next month. But this sort of madness has nothing to do with sports. Instead, I’ll be mad with school and with preparing for my big test at the end of the month…which I have to pass to finish graduate school in August!
But despite the madness of this March, there is a reason to celebrate. March is National Reading Month! Many schools begin the celebration of this month by acknowledging Dr. Seuss’s Birthday, which is on March 2nd. One boy I met at the library brought up the subject enthusiastically. “Are you celebrating Dr. Seuss’s Birthday?” he asked. And, yes, I said I was, and I even showed him the Dr. Seuss display which had been set up. Of course, this was no comparison to the week-long celebration at his school, where students could dress up in a Seuss-themed outfit each day of the week (which, I imagine, could be frightening).
Honestly, I never read that many Dr. Seuss books when I was little. Seuss is definitely a genius with rhymes, and I always enjoyed reading Green Eggs and Ham (though I have never fully embraced the lesson that it teaches); but I don’t ever remember being as excited about Dr. Seuss as the boy I met at the library. Lately, I’ve come to appreciate Fox in Socks. This is one of Dr. Seuss’s more nonsensical reads (which is saying something), but I enjoy challenging myself with all of the tongue twisters.
Besides the library’s Dr. Seuss display, I also made a “Books about Books” display. Because what better way is there to celebrate National Reading Month than by reading books about reading books? Here’s a small snippet of my display:
Sadly, I hadn’t read many of the books I put on this display. The few I had read were Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer, and The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. All of these books are great, by the way.
I recently learned that Dr. Seuss is not the only author being celebrated in March. Apparently, March 25th is Tolkien Reading Day. The Tolkien Society declared this annual event in 2003, much to my amazement and excitement. I recently found out about this “holiday” from a post on the “Interesting Literature” blog. This year, I don’t think I’ll be able to participate in this reading day, since it is happening on the same day as my dreaded exam. But no fear, for I will get to read Beren and Luthien when it is published in May. For anyone who does want to read a Tolkien book in a day, I recommend Mr. Bliss. This is a short children’s book about a man in a tall top hat who secretly owns a pet girabbit (giraffe+rabbit). This is an adorably cute and hilarious story, and the copy I read included handwritten text and illustrations drawn by Tolkien himself.
The books I’m currently reading for National Reading Month are Brooklyn by Colm Tóibín and Bright Star, which is compilation of Joan Keats’s letters to Fanny Brawne. Both books are enjoyable reads so far and have been adapted into movies.
After I finish these two books, I will not be at a loss, for there are many…many…many other books on my to-read list that I want to get to. But for any one who doesn’t know which book to read for National Reading Month, feel free to check out my Recommended Reads page!