I'm not sure if this makes me unusual or not, but I don't remember learning how to read. I don't recall if my parents ever read to me as a child, either. As a kid I mostly enjoyed playing with ponies, barbies, play doh, and I loved to draw. That was how I occupied my time when inside. Outside I was all tom-boy. Climbing trees, splashing in the creek, sitting in the dirt, riding my bike. And though I have a few vague memories of reading Peter Rabbit and some book about kittens, I don't think I developed a true love of reading until fifth grade.
Before junior high I was checking out four books a day from the library (library policy wouldn't allow me to get more than that at the time). I'd read them all and exchange them the next day for more. Some of my favorites were the Babysitters Club series and the Fear Street series. Goosebumps were okay, but they weren't a favorite. And then I read Gone With the Wind in eighth grade. That book is still one of my all time favorites. And I think that was the first time I was really pulled into the story as if I was there. As a side note, I was upset for days after reading that. I couldn't believe the ending! I was so mad at Scarlett!
A love for westerns and western/romance came next. I kept with those two categories for several years, and not until the last couple years have I developed a more eclectic taste. However, I do have to admit I am still somewhat picky when it comes to what books I will read. If I don't think I'll love it, more of than not I'll pass it by. And that's a shame, but it is what it is. I love reading and I want to love what I read.
My husband thinks I'm crazy, but when I'm reading a book I have a hard time putting it down. That being the case, I usually have a book done within two days. I can't help it. I get drawn in. I feel what the characters feel; I laugh with them, cry with them. And yes, sometimes I get upset with the characters as if they are real people. Last week I read a book, and I was so mad at the main character that I had to keep reading just so I could get to the ending. Because of the type of book it was, I was confident the character would redeem himself by the last page, which he did. But I was so angry that I couldn't put the book down half way through; I would have been too angry to sleep! That's just how I am.
So who's with me? Feel free to share your reading experiences.