Top Ten Bookish Memories Of My Life

toptentuesssTop Ten Tuesday, as  always, is hosted at my other blog — The Broke & the Bookish

This week’s topic: Top Ten Bookish Memories Of My Life


bookish-memory-1My stepmom used to take me to the library each week as a child and we’d each wander in our respective spaces. The library was built in the late 1800’s, I believe as huge home, and I just remember how HUGE it seemed. I would wander and wander and just pull out the most random books and then explore the other parts of the library as if I was in this huge castle. It’s funny seeing the library now (above) and seeing how it really isn’t as big as I remember it being but I just love to remember all the times I was there and it seemed like this huge and magical place…which magical it still is.

bookish-memories-2 Oh my goodness. EMBARRASSING. I finally get to meet John Green. Like bucket list must meet before I die author! And what do I do? Use my 10 seconds to babble incessently about how I used some quotes from his books in part of our wedding centerpieces. I was trying to think of something witty to say but that’s all that came out. He DID (as evidenced in the picture) look up at me and say, “That’s really cool!” So really I WIN. Oh and look at my hair action there.

bookish-memory-3Obviously BEA in of itself is a book nerd’s DREAM — all the books and book talk and convergence of bloggers. I enjoyed myself at parties I was kindly invited to with publishers and loved meeting authors and bloggers. But the best parts of BEA have ALWAYS ALWAYS been finally meeting all my friends and the most random things we did from Pinkberry trips to bar hopping to cocktail panels to calm down from the crazy energy of the BEA floor. So many laughs and great conversation. Also: book people know how to do cocktails.
bookish-memories-4Best weekend ever!!! I went out to Chicago to stay and be reunited with Anna and Tara and FINALLY FINALLY FINALLY meet my blogging bff Jen! It was the most perfect weekend ever with constant laughs, good food, WINE and TONS OF BOOK TALK! Just wish ALL of my blogging besties could have been there but this honestly was one of the most fun weekends I had all of last year!

bookish-memory-5You KNOW I love Stephanie Perkins (cue gushing over Anna and the French Kiss & Lola and the Boy Next Door…plus how her acknowledgements are the sweetest). So I FINALLY got to meet her and like all of my blogging friends get the “oh I love your blog!” a lot from authors but my most shining moment? Stephanie Perkins saying she LOVED my outfit. I was all flustered because have you SEEN Stephanie Perkins?? One of the cutest, most stylish people ever!

bookish-memory-6This is a VERY recent memory! As in last month! I have been DYING for a book club that meets up locally filled with people who like YA books and who are just, in general, super cool people. And FINALLY I have a book club and it is AWESOME. It’s so nice, even after only a few weeks, to text about books and meet up for book events (book club field trip to see Gayle Forman) and go to see movies together! I love my book club!!

bookish-memories-7Every time I meet Gayle Forman it’s just another great memory! Her books make me BAWL LIKE A BABY. Always. They also make me think. The VERY first time I met Gayle Forman she read from If I Stay and she read the HEADPHONES PART and I started crying. In front of people. The second and third time I met her was recently for the release of Just One Day and they were smaller events and we got to chat with her and learn more about her travels and just about her. She’s one of those authors I’d want to be friends with…when I eventually learn how to stop flailing when I talk to her. I know authors are just humans but Gayle Forman is the Slayer of my Heart.

bookish-memory-8It’s a good thing I don’t have a picture documenting this memory because all you would see is a red and puffy eyed Jamie. Not a pretty look. Especially because it was 4am. In the history of my LIFE, I have never cried in that raw and unhinged way I did while reading this book. It’s such a vivid memory because I had really just started reading again and I had forgotten how incredibly powerful books could be to make feel something so deeply in my soul.


Whew I’m getting a little emotional with this one. As many of my long time readers know my mom passed away from brain cancer in 2006. One of my most prized possessions I have from her are a few early edition Nancy Drew books she passed on to me when I was younger. I love these books. Many of you also know I got married this past August and I had a subtly bookish reception and we had stack of 3 vintage books as part of the centerpieces. Well, in the hunt to find vintage books, I decided to check out the attic. I was super stressed and just feeling like we were never going to get enough books for twenty something tables. I pull out this box of books and see some really amazing and PERFECT books and realize they were my moms and flipping through them she even had written her name on the inside cover. I sat there and bawled because I had been having such a hard time dealing with the fact my mom wasn’t here for my wedding and all the usual stress and, in that moment, I felt like it was this little reminder of her and this little connection I needed to have at that moment. I used those books in my wedding and it felt really special to integrate that into the celebration.


Ok back off potential haters and mockers. We are not super crazy Twilight fans but my sister and I, who at the time they came out BARELY got along, totally bonded over the Twilight movies and went to every single midnight showing together — no matter if we had work the next day, if she was super pregnant or even when we stopped living right around the corner from each other. ALWAYS. We dropped whatever we had going on and made it a point to do this. My sister and I are infinitely closer these days (like she’s my bff) and I won’t say that Twilight brought us together but I’ll say that us keeping that date night helped. Even if she was that old grumpy lady that told all the kids who wouldn’t stop giggling to shut up….as know we weren’t like in a movie that was really targeted to teens. We still have good laughs over this. Especially her ragey pregnancy hormones.

So tell me…what are some of YOUR favorite bookish memories? Reading with a special family member? Meeting an author? Standing out in line for your favorite book? Teaching someone to read? Let me know!

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About Jamie

Jamie is a 32 year old married lady (with a new baby!!) who is in denial that she's actually that old to be a married lady and a mom. When she's not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating ice cream, belting out Hamilton (loud and offkey) and having adventures with her husband, daughter and rescue dog.


  1. Oh Jamie you totally have me tearing up at number 9. That’s such a nice memory and I’m so glad you got to have that!

  2. Nothing’s as good as reading a GREAT book for the first time! Re-reads are fantastic but I often wish I could turn back the clock and start favourites with fresh eyes.

  3. I love your list! I’m so jealous of the blogger/reviewer events in America–I’m pretty sure we have nothing like that here in Australia. Also, I haven’t read The Book Thief yet but I really think I need to.

    My list.

  4. Ah I love your memories! Definitely Twilight is among mine … And of course Harry Potter.. After I read all the books, I got the audiobooks and for days I didn’t do anything else than listening!

    And BEA.. holy awesome!!! It’s one of my favorite bookish memories too! Hope we can meet this year Jamie 🙂

  5. These are SO fun. You look so adorably excited in the John Green pic I love it! I really hope to someday get to one of the bookish conferences. That would be so awesome.

    My Top Ten

  6. I’m not a big crier, but definitely tearing up a little at your #9. I lost my mom to pancreatic cancer in 2008, so I can only imagine how much those books much mean to you. Also like your #10 as well–my sister and I aren’t very close(we get along fine, but we’re far apart in age and she has a family of her own), but the times we have been the closest is when we’ve read the same books. Never thought of it before, really, but it’s one of the few things we have to discuss in common.

  7. I used to be so quiet and not talk to you, but then I found out that we’re book!twins! and now I can’t leave you alone. I love and adore your book memories so so much. They give me warm and fuzzies.

  8. What a great list!

  9. Great list!

    I don’t think I’d have enough for 10 so I didn’t make my own post… but I thought I’d leave this list SOMEWHERE, and so far yours is the best top 10 post I’ve seen for this topic, so I suppose I’ll dump my list here. 😛

    Some of mine include:
    – Meeting Kristin Cashore w/ some fellow Aussie bloggers
    – The moment I finish the Harry Potter series (hasn’t happened yet, I’m up to #5 now)
    – The first time I bought a book myself and started reading it as soon as I sat down at the train station. Consequently, it was the first YA book I ever read.
    – Book blogging

    I love this week’s top ten topic! 🙂

  10. So envious that you met Stephanie Perkins! I love her hair oh so red!!! I can’t believe you actually got 10 in your list, I’ve only got 3, check my Top Ten Tuesday post.

    Angelica @
    Paperback Princess

  11. I love your list, Jamie! The second time I met Stephanie Perkins (the first time was at another author’s signing in her town and we kind of stalked her…We were all OMGTHATSSTEPHANIEPERKINS) she told me that she loved my haircut and that it was perfect for me. O.O Completely made my day. Maybe I should have put that on my list. 🙂

  12. I swear I have never reacted as emotionally whilst reading as I did with The Book Thief. It needs to come with some sort of warning sticker on the front (or maybe just with a packet of tissues!). Great list!

  13. You have some lovely memories.
    I hope to find a book club within my area, like you have.

  14. Great list. I really loved the Book Thief and can imagine your feeling about that book.
    9 almost made me cry cause I have the same with my father’s books. They are like little treasures telling about personalities.

    Hope you will gather a lot more great book memories in the future.

  15. I love your list! *u*

  16. Loved your list doyke! Made me smile…. made me cry…. and made me think Stephanie Perkins belongs on stage! Oh… and of course #6 melts my heart. 🙂 HELL YEAH BOOK CLUB!!

  17. Ginger @ GReads! says:

    Oh Jamie, #9 really touched me. Books are what brought you into my life, but I feel like we’ve connected on such a deeper level.. over so many different things. I adore your list.

  18. I love that you posted a picture of your childhood library! I have very fond memories of mine. The kids section was decorated like a castle – there were moats and dragons – and it has since been remodeled but it used to be the COOLEST. One year I asked my mom if I could have my birthday party at the library… lol, it was that cool.

    Great list!

  19. I seriously want to hug your list! Like it’s so super sweet and YOU!

  20. What a lovely list! I also lost my mom to cancer and can only imagine how incredible it must have been for you to find your mother’s treasured books so unexpectedly. And yes, I had incredibly puffy eyes and a tear-streaked face while reading The Book Thief. Fantastic book.


  21. I loved your centerpieces, they were a very nice touch.

    Sigh, I wish I could have gone to Chicago for RT.

    More cocktail panels, yo.

  22. I love that your sister is the grumpy lady…I’m so there with her 😉

  23. great memories. I think I need to finally break down and read The Book Thief. Also, I almost started crying for #9.

  24. I love the look of that library! I would have been crazy fascinated by it if I were a kid, and went to visit it, I’m sure! And the rest of your moments are so much fun, and super touching. I especially love that you were able to have a bit of your mom in your wedding, thanks to the books. That’s definitely something special <3

  25. Loved your Top Ten Moments! That library looks insanely amazing and I would just love to visit there. You’ve obviously had some great bookish moments with meeting authors and going to BEA and stuff. I am so jealous! The part about finding your mothers books in the attic is so lovely. Just seems so fitting. Made me well up. I love your bookish wedding ideas, definitely will be stealing that idea if I ever walk down the aisle haha :P! Great Top Ten 🙂

    My TTT:

  26. Wow you have some amazing book memories! Thank you so much for sharing them with everyone and here’s hoping you have even more great book related memories in the future.

  27. Ahh, the LIBRARY. I need to edit my TTT post because I thought of a few more things and I am like you – the library seemed like this infinite place as kid. I went back for the first time as an adult a few weeks ago and they’ve made some lovely changes, but it is not this mansion I remembered.

    Awww, your memory of finding your mom’s books. So, so so sweet!

  28. So I’m kind of almost tearing up over #9. That’s such a great memory. I kind of want your life. You have so many amazing memories! Your list is so cute and you and I love it 🙂

  29. Awww, your memories are all so beautiful! Your story about finding your mum’s books almost had me in tears over here, and being complimented on your outfit by Stephanie “Pixie Who Just Fell Out Of A Fairytale” Perkins is definitely a moment to remember! Oh, and while I didn’t go to the midnight showings of the Twilight movies, going to see the first three each year were some of the earliest things my mum, sister and I did together as I recovered from my agoraphobia. I hadn’t been able to go out and enjoy myself with them for so long, it made those trips really special! No hatin’ from this corner of the blogoverse. 🙂

  30. I love your list – especially 1, 8 and 9. Heck, even 10 – it’s amazing how books are so intrinsically tied to our family and our emotions. For you, it was the Book Thief. For me, To Kill a Mockingbird. My mother was a town librarian, and I vividly remember wandering the stacks, waiting for her to finish so we could head home for supper. How wonderful for you to find her Nancy Drew books – and for you to have them to pass on to your own children. Thanks for sharing!

  31. I LOVE THIS! I’m totally going to link back to this on my post for Thursday. Also, I loved your #9. That totally got to me, and I love that you had your mom’s memories with you through her books at your wedding. What a cool keepsake too.

  32. Wow! You’ve been to some awesome places and met some awesome authors! I’d love to go to BEA one of these days. Great list!

    My Top Ten Tuesday Post

  33. Your list is full of beautiful memories Jamie, both fun and bittersweet. Wow, your library looks gorgeous!! My library is just sort of boxy, LOL. Jealous that you got to meet John Green! Love your hair action in the picture 🙂 However, I think #9 & 10 are my favorite on my list. They are both so personal & beautiful & they made me tear up!

    My TTT post

  34. My favorite part of your top 10? The action shot of your hair when you met John Green? Clearly your hair was just as excited.

    So much fun! I love especially how you found some of your mom’s childhood books. Such a treasure for sure, and something to pass along to your kiddies in the future. xo

  35. Kelsey @ The Lost Book Reports says:

    Gah! this are perfect and I started tearing up! I wish my memories were THAT good. I also wish my libraries were in a cool old home!

  36. Awww, that library is amazing. I got to work in a couple of old, awesome libraries, but my local one is new-fangled. I remember wandering through it looking for books to read for so long, because I could never decide what to read. Times have changed. Now I want to read ALL of the things.

    Nice hair! I’m pretty sure I just told him I wanted to shake his hand for writing such marvelous books. And he shook my hand. And walked away swiftly. *is socially awkward*

    COCKTAIL PANELS? What is this and why wasn’t I there?

    Ummm, wow. But I’m not surprised she complimented your outfit because you are ADORBS.

    I’m finally in a book club, and that is like a life dream come true!

    YOU MET GAYLE FORMAN THREE TIMES!!!! *flails* She might even know your name and stuff!

    Awwww, that is so sweet about finding your mother’s books. So wonderful that you have those.

  37. Of course I just love your #9. Makes my heart ache and soar at the same time. I LOVE YOUR FACE. And I’m so blessed to have met you and have you in my life. We will be neighbors one day! <3

  38. Love the library one. I have wonderful memories of my library (sigh).

  39. What a great post, love your list! Some of mine: Getting my first library card when visiting my Grandpa and checking out all the Amelia Bedelia books. The library near me was a small little house and it was VERY dark. The used bookstore, where my mom would let me buy a paper bag full of Sweet Valley High and Babysitters Club and you could return them for credit – and then staying up until 2am on a school night to read each book in one sitting. Going to the library after my first fight with my new husband and staying until it closed.

  40. Oh man, Book Thief! *cries*

    So jealous of all your author meets. John Green? Ugh. Stephanie Perkins? She has the coolest hair ever. Gayle Forman three times? Now that’s just not fair. Lucky bastard 😀

    It makes me wish I had been at your wedding (I hope that didn’t sound creepy) with those centrepieces and your mum and it must’ve been extra extra extra special.

    And that looks like the awesome at library ever. Mine is still better though. 😀

  41. #9 is so beautiful. That was so awesome how you used the books at your reception. I’m so glad you found those.

    I’m so jealous you got to meet all those authors; John Green is the best. Your library is so much bigger than my town’s. Ours is one floor and very cramped. And BEA sounds like it was epic. I’m planning on going this year, and I hope I have at least half as good of a time as you did.

    Here’s my TTT

  42. Ahhhh The Book Thief! I’m so incredibly glad that you enjoyed it so much! It is my personal favorite and no matter how many times I re-read that book I still cry with that same vulnerable, therapeutic, intensity as the first time. I actually just wrote a review of it on my blog ( Thanks for sharing!

  43. Ok, last week the Top Ten inspired rage across the net, but today, I’ve got all sorts of warm fuzzy (and yes even weepy) feelings today!

  44. This is a fantastic list. Even I was tearing up a little at #9 because I cannot imagine how bittersweet that moment must have been.
    On the other hand, some of your moments made me pretty jealous. I would love to go to BEA and meet my blogger friends in person, and the fact that John Green FREAKING LIVES IN THE SAME CITY AS ME and I haven’t met him yet is crazy.
    This is such a great topic- it’s interesting and really helps you get to know your fellow bloggers! 🙂

  45. Mine aren’t nearly as exciting, but I got a great kick out of reading yours.

  46. That’s an awesome list! I wish I’d had your chance to meet these fantastic authors, some of my favorites!

  47. That library is soooo cute!! 😀 John Green *fangirling* no fair!!!

  48. This is awesome. My favorite is number nine, it feels so good to know that someone you love also loved to read at some point in their lives. Sigh.

    Great list, Jamie!

  49. 1. I have great memories of going to the library as a kid. But my library wasn’t as pretty as yours! WOW!
    2. Your hair looks awesome in that photo. In fact, I pretty much LOVE that photo.
    3. I’m going to BEA this year! Are you going again? I hope so. I can’t wait to meet you if you are!
    4. Awww. That looks like so much fun! And I have heard RT is a blast.
    5. Stephanie Perkins is ADORABLE. For real.
    6. I’m so happy for you. That sounds like a lot of fun!
    7. I still have not read a Gayle Forman book. *ducks* I know I need to though. 😀
    8. I felt much the same way after reading The Book Thief. It is a powerful, crazy, scary, emotional book and experience.
    9. That is wonderful and you just made me cry. I don’t know what else to say. *hugs*
    10. No hating here. I’m not a huge fan of those books, but that sounds like a really fun, awesome tradition to have.

    Great list, Jamie! I loved reading it.

  50. Aww, best list! I know exactly how you feel about Gayle Forman. I just wanted to talk and talk and talk to her about Just One Day a few weeks ago when I went to her signing. She’s one of those people who has been so many places and met so many interesting people in life. And her stories rock my socks off. 🙂

  51. Such a fantastic list! 🙂

  52. This is such a lovely top ten! Especially the last one, bonding over a story is one of the best things ever 🙂

  53. Midnight showings are where it’s AT.

  54. You’ve got so many good bookish memories! haha meeting John Green is like a dream of mine it’s definitely on my bucket list!
    Lily @ lilysbookblog

  55. I love this list so much, Jamie! Your library is really pretty – love that it’s in an old home! Isn’t it funny how things seem so huge when you’re little and then you realize that they’re not? I’m seriously so jealous of your book club! I WANT ONE TOO with super cool people! Seriously. Send good book club vibes my way!

    Also, got teary reading your list item about your mom’s books. Such a good thing that you found those books at the perfect time, and I love that you were able to integrate those books into your wedding!

  56. These sound like some great bookish memories. Thanks for sharing 🙂


  1. […] that and composing my bookish memories recently, I started thinking, “What made ME a reader? Where did that come from? Can I […]

  2. […] books because of the memories attached. There’s something very sentimental, as I shared in my bookish memories post, about having my mom’s old Nancy Drew books and finding her childhood books and seeing her […]