I guess it started in the second grade. That’s when I realized that I had an unusual talent: I could read out loud better than most of the others in my class. So much better, in fact, that when it was time for reading class, Miss Sullivan would hand me a book and send me down the hall to read the book to the kindergarten class.
That was when I realized that I had a problem: I was addicted to books.
As I grew older, the problem worsened. A typical day in high school would find me in the library after school, devouring book after book, desperately trying to slake my thirst.
Novels were my drug of choice, although a good story line, like that in “Cyborg,” would send me to the encyclopedia, where I would search to see if the plot was reasonably accurate. (Incidentally, that book, written by Martin Caidin, was the basis for the hit television series, “The Six Million Dollar Man.”)
I think I read the entire Sherlock Holmes canon in two afternoons.
The Fault, Dear Brutus
The fault lay not in my stars but rather in my genes. My mother was a genius who could read an entire novel on the subway ride from Hunter College to her home on Kingsland Avenue in The Bronx, and I inherited her love of reading.
Couple that with the grandparents who had bestowed on me the entire My Little Golden Books library, along with a doting aunt whose favorite gifts at birthdays and other gift-giving occasions were books, and I didn’t stand a chance.
No, I’m not blaming them for my addiction. At worst, they were merely enablers. I and I alone am responsible for my inability to cope without the crutch a good book furnishes.
And now it seems I’ve passed my addiction on to my daughters, one of whom seems determined to pass it on in turn to her children.
How To Tell If YOU Are An Addict
It isn’t hard, but if you’re not sure, let me direct your attention to this page.
Here’s another clue:
This is all you think about when you picture your “dream home.”
Well, I’ve got to close for now: it’s almost time for my bookaholics support group meeting…at the city library.