Wednesday, January 12, 2011

To Read or Not To Read

We are reading Girl in Translation for my book club.  On Monday, Lulu and I were waiting for an appointment and I was frantically reading my book so that I could finish it for book club.  Our conversation went something like this:

Lulu:  Mom, what are you reading?

Me:  I have to have this book read by Thursday because we have our book club meeting on Thursday.

Lulu:  Oh.  {{look of confusion}}  Well, you don't have to read the book.  You could watch the movie, read a summary or... {{look of excitement}} join an online book club and see what everyone else is saying about the book.

You could be done in an hour!

Me:  Oh thanks.  {{What happened to just reading the cliff notes?}}  But I want to read the book.  I like to read.

End of story.

We all had to read books for school.  The teachers would always assign the book and say, "You can watch the movie or read the Cliffs Notes but the questions on the test are going to be from the book ONLY.  You won't be able to get this information from the movie or the Cliffs Notes.  If you just watch the movie or just read the Cliffs Notes then you won't know what is on the test because that information comes from the text."

Often my friends would only watch the movie or, most often, ONLY read the Cliffs Notes.  I always, always, always, always read the whole book.  The teachers were wrong.  All you had to do was read the Cliffs Notes.  I waited and waited and waited for the time that I read the whole book and there would be questions on the test that were ONLY from the book.  What a sweet victory that would be... an "I told you so - you have to read the book."  Duh! Alas, this sweet victory never came.  In fact, I actually think I might have performed better on the tests if I had read the Cliffs Notes because I was reading the book and trying to take it all in while the Cliffs Notes gave a summary of the book as well as highlighted all of the important details, no matter how small.


How about you?  Are you a book reader or a Cliff's Notes reader?
Be honest - we're all friends here.


Ashley said...

I def. read the entire book.. BUUUUUUUUT.. I didn't like girl in translation.

Anonymous said...


SusieQ said...

I have never, EVER, read Cliff Notes on anything! I always read books and love to read. Somehow Lulu needs to understand that there is an endless world out there within the pages of books!

Whenever there is a movie about a book I want to read, I ALWAYS read the book first and then watch the movie as the book is always better.. and they change a lot of things when they make the movie and usually the changes are not for better!

Traci said...

I always read the book. Although I was so confused by the Canterbury Tales I ended up getting the Cliff Notes and reading them then reading the book.