I was built to love books. It isn't necessarily in my DNA, but it's certainly in my family. Somehow I learned to wrap my chubby fingers around a book and start reading at age three (probably because I have five older siblings who taught me). My family owns a bookstore, and I began accumulating stacks by my bed when I was six. Nancy Drew was my drug of choice. As well as the little "Our Daily Bread" pamphlets from the church foyer. I heard a preacher say that you can read a chapter of Proverbs for every day of the month, and I started doing that regularly when I was about eight. Some nights, when I was scared, I just read Proverbs 3:24-26 over and over. For a long time, I never touched the rest of the Bible--just Proverbs.
The only fight I ever got into with any of my siblings was with my brother Jason, who accused me of stealing his Lord of the Rings box set. By the way, it was totally mine. Not his. The great irony here is that I don't even like the Lord of the Rings books and only read them because Kemper made me.
In fact, I don't really like fiction much at all. Particularly fantasy fiction. Although there certainly are exceptions, especially Ester's forthcoming book, which is nothing less than brilliant. In general, though, I don't care to read about things that don't exist or relationships that are impossibly perfect. What I lean toward are books about Jesus, biographies, historical non-fiction (particularly about Presidents or giant explosions), memoirs, business books, and leadership books.
Reading helps me engage and grow. It provides me with a variety of topics for conversation, and it feeds my hungry skull. (Later, over sushi, Ester will remind me that "skulls don't eat," and I will acknowledge that she is right while maintaining my preference for awkward personification.)
What do you read?