Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. This week’s theme is:
July 24: Books with Sensory Reading Memories
Sensory memories are vivid memories of where you were, what you were doing, the time of year, and any smells and sounds from when you were reading. (This isn’t an exhaustive list, but these are just a few examples.) The books I’ve chosen are books that I have distinct memories of where I was reading them and what I was doing.
The Fault in Our Stars // I distinctly remember reading a lot of this on a coach. I was heading home from university for the Christmas holidays, and I was trying to be discrete about the fact that I was openly crying at the heartbreaking scenes.
Retribution Rails // We’d been moved into our new house for a few months, when the internet went down one weekend. It was a full area-wide outage and nothing I could do would make it come back online. So, naturally, I read. I had a copy of this on my laptop and I finished it within 36 hours, because it was fantastic (and there was nothing I could do online).
The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue // For Christmas last year, we drove up to Newcastle (where I’m originally from) to visit our family for a few days during the run up to New Year. The drive took just shy of 5 hours, and most of that I spent reading this phenomenal book. When we finally arrived, I didn’t even want to get out of the car because I wanted to carry on reading.
Hold Your Own // This poetry anthology has become my all-time favourite collection, so I remember exactly where I was when I was reading it. I was sitting on my bed, and I read it all in one go because I was completely enrapt.
The Star-Touched Queen // I read most of this while commuting on the tube last spring. I was doing two week’s publishing work experience for Kuperard, and I read so much of it while travelling up and down the Northern line, that I now associate it completely with the tube. Despite it being a YA fantasy.
A Court of Wings and Ruin // Although I’m not longer really an SJM fan, I remember reading this in my garden on a super warm day last year. The bright sunshine seemed completely at odds with all the battles and death.
The Road // I read this years ago when I was about 15, but it’s another that I read sitting on my back lawn (different city, different house) during a sunny evening. I was sitting on a rug and by the end of the book I was just so despondent with the outcome, that I went inside and shut out the sun.
A Conjuring of Light // I finished the final few chapters of ACOL sitting on my bed, feeling tense, ecstatic, and blown away. I remember all my feelings vividly, and I remember crying because the ending was so perfect and because I knew I was coming to the end of the trilogy. This book means so much to me and is one of the best books I’ve ever read so I’ll remember exactly where I first read it and how I felt for a long time.
The Alchemist // I read this while on holiday about ten years ago, and finished it within four hours. I wouldn’t have even picked it up if it weren’t for my Dad, who read it the day before and then recommended it too me. I’m so glad he did, because it quickly became one of my favourite books.
The Color Purple // We had to read this book for one of my A Level classes, and I remember reading some of it in class and some at home, and being shocked at the brutality that the black women in the story suffered. Some of the others in my class didn’t really like it as a story, but I thought it was one of the most powerful books I’d ever read, and still do.
Can you remember where you were or what you were doing when reading a particular book? Are there any books that you wish you’d read in a different place?