“Read Across America Day,” an annual event honored in schools and communities throughout the United States on or around the birthday of children’s author Theodor Seuss Geisel — known to readers of all ages as Dr. Seuss — is meant to instill in children an awareness of, and a passion for, the power of the printed word. This year, Read Across America Day was Friday, the day before Geisel’s birthday, March 2.
Schools host daylong readings of Dr. Seuss’ works and other books, often involving parents, to show the pure delight that literacy can give over a lifetime.
A number of people in the area spoke about their favorite book or the book that most influenced them, and why they chose that book. People read for diverse reasons. For some, giving an answer was very difficult. For others, the answer came readily. And others simply could not be limited to one volume.
“I live and breathe books!” Bertha Rogers of Bright Hill Press and Literary Center in Treadwell wrote. “In fact, while I was recuperating from my accident, I read about 60 books. My favorite among those was Richard Ford’s ‘Canada,’ a stunning book — I think about its characters and the devastating plot almost every day.”
Dr. Margaret L. Drugovich, president of Hartwick College in Oneonta, wrote that her favorite literary work is Sigrid Undset’s fictional trilogy “Kristin Lavransdatter.”
Drugovich described the trilogy as “a very well-written tale of an often courageous woman who was able to navigate the trials of Norwegian life in the Middle Ages. Despite some extraordinary, and other rather ordinary, obstacles, she was able to live a life of dignity because of her personal determination to do so as she learned to depend upon and hone her personal strengths. It was the perfect book for a 16-year-old girl (my age when I read it) who was drawn to and inspired by examples of strong women among my family, my teachers, and friends.”