Gateway Book

When my wife and I traveled home from Tampa in June, we ended up having to be directed to Houston for the night. To fly back “home” the next morning, the flight number was the same as the redirected flight. We were told our tickets would be all we would need to get us through the gate and on the airplane, but to make sure, we decided to suffer through the customer service experience at the main entrance to the airport.

Due to our need to verify, we arrived at the airport with a substantial time cushion. We weren’t on the only flight that had been directed to Houston, so we had lots of company. For the sake of this post, just assume the line worked out fine. (I tried to help the Spanish-speaking gentlemen ahead of me by telling him he was the next one up at the counter. He took offense and scolded me for trying to help. I shrugged and realized if I was traveling with my wife and small child I would be extra stressed, too.)

To kill the boredom, my wife and I struck up a conversation with the person behind us in the line. We started talking about various books we had read and enjoyed. A few recommendations were exchanged. Our new friend even went to Amazon and bought one of my wife’s recommendations while we were waiting.

It was somewhere during this conversation I mentioned how my wife was not much of a reader the first few years of our marriage. Other than a few John Grisham books, she rarely joined me in reading before bed. The term “gateway book” soon entered into our conversation.  Our companion’s significant other was not much of a reader.  We gave her a few suggestions from Eric Metaxas and other authors.  We encouraged her.  It is worth the continued effort.  

What was that first book that I read and convinced my wife that she should be a reader too? Was it a book by Erik Larson?  Was it some other book that allowed me to penetrate her anti-reading armor?  It has been a few years since we have become good reading buddies.  I don’t ever expect her to enjoy fantasy like I do.  And, she is likely to favor the legal novels more than I ever will.  It is good to have someone to screen books for you.  Since we know each other so well, any recommendations offered are typically VERY good ones.  It is relaxing, for me, to be able to look up at my wife and ask her how her book is going.  If lucky, we will have many retirement years to enjoy many stacks of books.  

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