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Thursday, January 9, 2014

Books brought a lifelong love of discovery

The library in my small hometown was my favorite place in the whole world. I was safe, warm, protected, and could be alone in my own little world. It was wonderful.

One of my favorite books from the library was The Secret Garden. I loved the story. It inspired and nurtured in me a great gift – the gift of compassion, of transference of feeling from one human being to another. It opened my heart and soul to another’s pain, another’s joy, another’s tribulations. I was probably 10 years old when I read the book. I felt so much

When I was 14, I began reading my mother’s magazines. They were magazines like True Romance, Real Romance and True Story. She would drop my dad off to work at 5 a.m. and then go back to bed. My sister and I would crawl into bed with her and read the magazines with her. Those stories, too, taught me about kindness, love, misery, heartbreak, perseverance, patience and all those many attributes a person needs to get through life, to get through each day’s challenges.

Those stories took me out of myself, transported me to other worlds, introduced me to so many different, interesting personalities. They helped me to realize that life could be full of joy and sorrow at the same time, that life was a mixture of good and bad, and that we have choices. They taught me that we are our best friend and worst enemy, and that, no matter what, we can prevail.

My education happened at the Winona Public Library. It was my supplemental grade school, my supplemental high school, and my entire college. Through books, I learned how to start and run a successful business. I learned how to be a kind, caring, compassionate person.

That is what The Secret Garden introduced me to – the love of reading, which has led to a lifelong love of discovery, of adventure, of learning – all through the marvelous, amazing world of books.

Sherry Pringle, Spare Room Mini Storage

SHARE YOUR FAVORITE CHILDHOOD BOOK: We'd love to hear about the book (or books) that made a difference to you as a child. It can be a video or an essay. Here's a link that gives you the guidelines.

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