Thursday, March 22, 2007

Book Candy Challenge

When I start on a printed page, I tend to eat it down like a peppermint stick. From PREACHER'S BOY by Katherine Paterson, p. 84

The idea that 'reading is like candy' came to me when I was reading Preacher Boy a few months ago. I really loved the concept. The more I thought about it, the more connections I was able to make. Both are pleasurable. Both are satisfying. Both are delicious. Both are addictive. Both can give cravings. Both make life more fun. And the list goes on and on...

Now I know technically there are many kinds of candy. But I tend to think of candy coming in two varieties: chocolate and everything else. (And I am very opinionated when it comes to chocolate. For example, why oh why RUIN good chocolate by adding crisped rice???) Similarly, there are many genres of books. Not every candy OR every book will appeal to everyone. Everyone's favorites are different. Everyone has a different idea of a *perfect* treat. Here are my favorite candies (in no particular order) and their book equivalents. I am curious to know what YOUR favorite candies are and YOUR book equivalents.

Raisinets = Anne series by L.M. Montgomery
Almond Joy = Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
Mounds = New Moon by Stephenie Meyer
Three Musketeers = Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
Milky Way = The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen
Cadbury Eggs = Gone With The Wind by Margaret Mitchell
York Peppermint Patties = Looking for Alaska by John Green
Junior Mints = Hope Was Here by Joan Bauer
M&M’s = Angus, Thongs, and Full Frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison
Hershey Milk Chocolate Bar = Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
Hershey Special Dark = Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Hershey Cookies ’n’ Creme = What My Mother Doesn’t Know by Sonya Sones
Hershey Kisses = Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card

One of the reasons I love this concept is because it *explains* or *highlights* the differences in pleasure. I can say the phrase "I enjoyed" or "I loved" a thousand times or more. I enjoy probably 80 to 90% of what I read. What do I mean by enjoy? I find it entertaining and pleasurable enough that I'm motivated by the book to keep reading. That doesn't mean I *feel* the same way about every book I "enjoyed." And *love* what do I mean when I say I *loved* a book? I end up loving about 50% of what I read. I could mean it's memorable. I could mean I want to recommend it to everyone I know. I could mean I want to buy my own copy and reread it every year. I could mean I want to hug it and pat it and keep it close. I could mean that I found a part of myself in the book. It could be something I savored. It could be something that changes the way I see the world or changes the way I see myself. I could mean that I fell in love with the book at first sight. I could mean hundreds of things. That is why I found it so delicious to think of books in terms of different kinds of candy. All chocolate is good, but there are differences between filling your craving with M&M's and filling your craving with a Milky Way bar. One isn't *better* than another. They're just different.

And for the record, I read more books than I eat candy! Candy is a sometimes treat and books are an everyday treat!!!


Anonymous said...

Interesting analogy. Makes perfect sense when you think about it :)
Except some people don't have a sweet tooth. I, for one would probably choose books over chocolates ...

Erin said...

Here's your questions, Becky:

If you were a villain in a book, who would you be?

If you could co-star in a movie with a famous (or not-so-famous) actor or actress, who would you pick?

Best book you've read this year?

If your life were a book, what genre would it be?

What's the funniest book you've read?

Have fun!

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Actually, I can't wait to see your answers to Erin's questions, Becky!
Guess my candy of choice would be Good 'n' Plenty and equate it with anything by Gary Chapman. Good pick of M&M's - my foster daughter loves that series!
I have a question! I am the author of a YA series, with a book coming out next month. How do I contact you regarding submitting it for a possible review?
Thanks so much!

Becky said...

Email me by clicking on the link in this post (hopefully my html tags will work) or by clicking my profile...there should be an option to 'email' me or my JacketFlap page on the right in the list of links should have my email information as well. Just send me an email and I'll send you my address. I'd love to review your book if you'll send me an ARC or copy of the book.