Imagine Queen Elizabeth taking the doggies for a walk when she comes upon a bookmobile. At first, she takes a book out just to be polite but finds she's caught the fever. She becomes a bibliophile. Her new habit,..er...I mean, hobby has unexpected consequences. At first, it's just how she is perceived by the people but then it becomes about how she perceives the world and the people themselves.
The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett is a quirky and funny novella. I ate it up in a couple of hours. I understood The Queen's confusion and frustration with her advisors. Recently a poll was conducted on DailyBlogTips called "Is reading necessary?" and there were a number of people who did not believe it is. Alan Bennett cleverly uses The Queen, a woman apart from the rest of the world, to say how necessary it is. Not having access to people the way the rest of us do, The Queen misses out on experiences you and I take for granted. Through reading she opens up a whole new world for herself. We may not be royalty but we do the same through what we read. I know my life is enriched through books.
I don't think I'll be able to see The Queen the same way again.
I read this for Dewey's Reading Challenge and she loved it so much she planned to read it again.
Dewey @ The Hidden Side of the Leaf
Teabird @Tea Leaves
Sheri @ A Novel Menagerie
Nymeth @ Things Mean A Lot