Saturday, August 29, 2009

Remember Me… - Dara Girard

Recently Ray Bradbury’s classic novel, Fahrenheit 451, was published as a graphic novel. The novel was authorized by Bradbury and includes an introduction by the author where he talks about the origins of the story and the theme of censorship. One thing he said stood out for me:

“May I suggest that anyone reading this introduction should take the time to name the one book that he or she would most want to memorize and protect from any censors or ‘firemen’. And not only name the book, but give the reasons why they would wish to memorize it and why it would be a valuable asset to be recited and remembered in the future.”

Excellent exercise, but I immediately hit a snag. As an admitted bibliophile I struggled to think of just one book.

Should it be a children’s book: James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl or Anne of Green Gables by LM Montgomery?

Young Adult: Are You There God it’s Me Margaret? by Judy Blume or Not a Swan by Michelle Magorian?

A classic: The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexander Dumas or Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte?

Popular: Loves Music, Loves to Dance by Mary Higgins Clark or The Third Circle by Amanda Quick or Welcome to Temptation by Jennifer Crusie? (I really like popular fiction and know that it would meet a dire fate because of literary snobbery)

Poems or short stories: Self Help by Lorrie Moore or The Dream Keeper and Other Poems by Langston Hughes?

And of course once I chose a genre and thought of authors my mind would race. ‘If I chose this one, then this one would die…Ahh…’

But it got me thinking about the power of stories in my life. How they have entertained and taught me throughout the years. I feel privileged that we don’t live in a society full of censorship, but aliteracy may be our downfall if we’re not careful, but that’s another subject. I feel honored that my stories too can be part of this grand tradition.

What about you? What book(s) would you memorize in order to save?

Dara Girard’s latest release is ROUND THE CLOCK, the fourth and final book in The Black Stockings Society series; about four women, one club, and a secret that will make all their fantasies come true. Find out more on her website:


Mary said...

Wow, good question. I would try...try to memorize Moby Dick in order to save it. I love that tale.

cheryl c said...

I can think of nothing more important to memorize than the Bible, at least certain passages and verses!

Laurie said...

Charlotte's Web- EB White
Louis the Trumpeter Swan- EB White
LOTR-JR Tolkien
Watership Down-Richard Adams
Where the Sidewalk Ends (poems)- Shel Silverstein
Dr Zhivago-Boris Pasternak
Ransom- Julie Garwood

Michele L. said...

I am second Cheryl C. than the bible would be my most important book I would memorize and save!

ilona said...

Having read Fahrenheit 451 a looong time ago (not saying how long as it gives away my age lol)I have given this question much thought over those years.

I came to the conclusion that I cannot make the decision at all. There are so many good books that don't deserve to be lost to any kind of censor at all and the best thing to do would be to stop such censorship in the first place.

Especially if the memorization of the book depended on my lousy memory!!

Mari said...

It would have to be To Kill a Mockingbird, one of my favorite books.