Yesterday I started to write down every book I remember reading during my childhood.
It’s the beginning of something I’m calling the ‘The Little Black Book Project’. I’m aiming to write down every single book I read, inspired by my grandma who did the same.
I could just start now, aged 25, but it seems a cop out. I’d miss out on documenting so many of the books that, cue quavering-speech-voice, made me who I am today. So I’m going back, all the way back, to ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ and ‘Spot the dog’.
I’m remembering the heroes I found in books: Ellen MacArthur, the sailor, ploughing through stinging water, spray not dampening a fierce determination to be quicker than anyone else; Baldmoney, Sneezewort and Dodder building their coracle to find their lost friend; the wonderfully named mouse who balances fighting evil with building watches; the boy who could hear pictures; the girl with the nunga nunga’s, and Adrian, who just wanted Pandora to love him.
Any joy, however, is tempered by a grinding frustration. Did I actually read that? Why won’t google understand ‘boy, magic, clock’ isn’t Harry Potter? What was that series called with the dragon? Hopefully this project will save me from some of the pain of a fallible memory in future. In the meantime, frustration is a small price to pay for rediscovering old friends.