How I Turned Into A Reader

It’s because of you, dad.

My first ever book!

It’s year 1999, I’m with my mom and dad in a grocery store trying to plead them to buy a brush that I can play with. Idk why I thought it would be a good idea to play with a brush? But that’s just the 4 year old me. My dad is unamused with my tantrums and picked up a tiny pink book instead.

It’s a storybook and I don’t want it. I have had enough studying at school and I want to read no more. My dad ignore my plead and got me the book.

This is the one, the first book that I have ever owned. Yes, I have kept it safe with me to this date. I did not realise then that this book would mark the beginning of my ever long reading journey.

My dad has been an avid reader as long as I can remember. He always carried a book with him in his bag. If he’s waiting in a queue or travelling – he would waste no time and start reading. I found it intriguing because I saw him with a new book every week! I always wondered how did he read so fast.

As I was growing up, he always tried to instil the love of reading in me too. I think, he knew the power of books and as a father he wanted me to learn how he knew best – by reading.

So, whenever he got a book for himself, he got one for me too.

I got a lot of storybooks as a kid, MagicPot and Tinkle Comics -Ah! I was so obsessed with Tinkle. I also received encyclopedias about space and science which reaffirmed my choice to become an astronaut.

A few years later I was reading Roald Dahl and boy, I was hooked! I remember reading ‘The Big Friendly Giant (BFG)’ and it’s then I decided to turn into an avid reader, just like my dad. I realised the power of storytelling. It was not only enjoyable but I always felt like I learned something new. The BFG is still very much close to my heart – so when I saw it on the big screen many years later, I couldn’t help but cry a little – both out of joy and nostalgia.

I spent my teenage reading Meg Cabot. I completed the entire series of ‘Princess Diaries’ and loved the book ‘How To Be Popular’. I always saw myself in the eyes of the protagonist and learned empathy – and it’s only one of the key things that I learned reading. I was that one kid in school, who used to miss sports class to read one more chapter.

Soon, I finished all titles of Paulo Coelho (I still love all his books) before moving to explore other genres. I read self-help to business to biographies to classics and contemporary fiction.

Now, we have two readers in the house and our stack of read and unread books is only increasing.

My dad and I used to go to the bookstores on some weekends where we would hunt for new books to read. We still go, sometimes. This passion, paved way to have our own mini library at home – full of bookshelves for all our treasures to be kept safely.

Mini library at home

This is one wall that I’m really proud of.

So, when people ask me – when did I start reading? or how did it all start? My only answer is that it wasn’t an overnight process. It was my dad, who made me fall in love with reading, one book at a time since I was four.

Also Read: An Open Letter To My Father

Want to know what I think of the books I read? : Read my book reviews

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  1. elenxmai

    This is such a cute post! I’m the only reader in my family and nobody knows where I got it from haha. I’m so jealous of your bookshelves – total reading goals! xx
    El // Welsh Wanderer

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  2. LauraLizBuckley

    What a lovely story! I’ve thought about how I’d instill my hypothetical future kids with a love of reading – books have brought me so much joy, taught me about the world and increased my capacity for empathy enormously. This was a really beautiful example of how it can work. Thank you for sharing!

  3. E. Pasternak

    For me, I was read to since as far as I remember. My mum read to me every night before bed H.CH. Andersen’s fairy tales and little books she received with newspaper and I simply don’t know life without reading beside a few periods in my life when I was in a slump/ had mental health issues. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. paigebainbridge

    This is really lovely, like a love-letter to your dad! I like to hear people’s stories about all the stepping stones that helped create the person they are today, and your dad getting a book for you every time he got one for himself is such a thing. Thanks for sharing — quite a library! –Paige Bainbridge (www.paigebainbridge.com_

  5. Sarah

    What a beautiful thing your father gave you. Reading is such a wonderful thing. I honestly can’t remember who influenced my love of reading. I know both my parents encouraged me to read when I was young even though neither of them were big readers. But once I started I never stopped. Roald Dahl are some of my favorite books from my childhood, that man had a special gift with words.

  6. Jessโ€™ Secret Diary

    I love this post! Roald Dahl was also a huge part of my childhood especially Georges Marvolous Medicine which I had to memories for a verse and pros exam. To this day Roald Dahl books (and now films) have a special place in my heart. You are very lucky to have a Dad who passed his love for reading onto you!

  7. Alice

    I loved The Princess Diaries too! I could completely relate to the main character as I was also tall and thin with mousy hair and unpopular in school. I’ve recently started reading more books again and wish I’d done it sooner.

  8. kalopsiacloud

    Hi, My name is Yasyfin from Kalopsia Cloud. I love reading as well, reading your post reminds me of a picture book my mom bought me when I was a kid. I also love your mini library, it’s beautiful.

  9. A Cup of Wonderland

    I love this post and I love reading about how you became a reader and your connection with reading and your father. I have to admit I am a little jealous too that you still have the first book that you ever owned! That has got to be such a precious item for you to still have, after all these years.

  10. justnatonya

    That’s so beautiful your father has inspired your reading journey! I need to read more because I believe it makes me more well-rounded, better spoken and it’s a awesome way to get creative. I would definitely want to pass this down to my future children one day๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿพ Thanks for sharing how you started reading sis!โค๏ธ

    Natonya |

  11. Britt K

    I love this! Parents play such an important role in inspiring a love for reading in their children, and I’m glad to hear that your father was able to do that for you. This was inspirational to read.

  12. Sam

    That’s so lovely that your dad inspired you to read! Neither of my parents are big readers but my Nan always used to encourage me to pick up a book. Roald Dahl was one of my favourite authors (Fantastic Mr Fox was my favourite book of his!)

  13. Jenny in Neverland

    Such a lovely post. I have a similar story but with my Mum. She’s always adored reading, I don’t ever remember a time when she didn’t have a book in her hands. And she got me into reading at a young age too!

  14. Harikrishna

    Wow that’s a great little ! We often remember specific incidents from our childhood very well only because our parents made them special!

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