My mother was very excited as she presented me with a copy of Girl of the Limberlost by Gene Stratton Porter. She told me that this was one of her favorite books when she was a girl.
Soon I was lost in the story of Elnora, an impoverished girl living near the Limberlost Swamp. Her life moved from the pages of a book into my imagination, where I pictured the scenes and her struggles.
I had read Trixie Beldon and Nancy Drew mysteries, but they were just entertaining stories. Elnora’s life became very real to me. It was the first time I was ever sad when a book ended. I didn’t want to leave her and imagined how her life would have carried on.
Thus began a life-long love of reading. By gifting me with literature that was important to her, my mother ignited my passion for a well written story.
Over the years I have spent countless hours immersed in good books. The world around me fades away as I enter into the stories. To this day, I feel one of the best ways to spend a day is curled up with a book.
This love of reading has been passed along to my daughter and my grandchildren. I wonder if my mother realized the legacy she was handing down when she gave me that book.
I inherited her collection of books when she passed away. In it are many classics, some dating back more than 100 years. I treasure these volumes and when I look at them I send up a prayer of thanks for the mother who loved me enough to share her favourite book with me.