Happy National Book Lovers Day!

Lorin Lindell

Rebecca Beardsall, Senior Director of Marketing, Conferences and Publishing (Extended Education) reads almost 100 books a year. Why does she read so much you ask? To open up the world.

Three paperback books about forest fires lay flat on a table.

“I get to know other cultures, other thoughts while exploring history and the future. Books are a way to see the world in a different light. For me, traveling, books and reading are all linked.”

You cannot open a book without learning something. - Confucius

While traveling through Montana this July, Rebecca picked up a copy of Young Men and Fire by Norman Maclean. By the end of the month, she had finished three different books on wildfires including The Thirtymile Fire by John N Maclean and The Big Burn by Timothy Egan.

 “I read books based on where I am traveling. In Helena we explored Gates of the Mountains, so I bought a copy of Young Men and Fire. As I traveled Montana, more of the book came to life. Books help me connect to history and people. I get to know these people/characters on some level and form a deeper appreciation of the past and the world we live in.”

A wooden brown wilderness sign stands in a forested area. The sign sign reads Mann Gulch Fire and tells the story of the fire that took place in 1949..

The world is a book. And those who do not travel read only a page. - Saint Augustine

When asked about her must read list, at the top was To Kill A Mockingbird.

“I remember reading it in 8th grade and realizing what a story can tell you about yourself, what you can learn about history and culture even within in the pages of a novel. It’s been banned in places, but we can’t censor literature to the point of censoring history. It was through To Kill A Mockingbird that I began to understand the time period.  We need to understand the good and bad; and if you’re reading, you already know the power of words.”

It is likely I will die next to a pile of things I was meaning to read. - Lemony Snicket

For more on what Western is reading, check out at Western Reads