A Bookish Bedroom

In the midst of preparing for visitors in September, I decided our guest room wasn’t the welcoming retreat I wanted it to be. The room was a mishmash of all the furniture we’d collected and moved over the years: pink lamps from my college dorm, a coffee table that was too bulky for the living room, a dresser originally from my childhood bedroom, an IKEA wardrobe, and absolutely nothing on the walls.

I settled on my new theme quickly: books. I saved some inspiration images to Pinterest and then did my best to whip up a refresh in time for company. In the end, I was quite pleased with the look. In the future, I’d like to get fancier bedding and perhaps paint an accent wall – but I’ll probably wait to do that until we have more company arriving!

An antiquey-gold color helped pull the mismatched furniture together. I replaced the pink lamps for gold lamps and a new gold reading lamp. A frame on the dresser tells guests our WiFi name and password. Nothing makes you feel more at home than WiFi, am I right?! Switching out the silver drawer pulls for these gold glass knobs created an instant update.

The wall art gave the room the biggest face-lift. To the left of the dresser, a collection of black and gold frames hold reading-inspired images: a book spine print my sister gave me, a picture of my baby reading a book at the library, a book page, and even a collage of my old library cards. Above the bed, a cute round frame and a metal photo holder gave the room some texture and provided a place for bookish quotes I’d gathered from Pinterest. A Nancy Drew book page graces the rectangle frame over the bed (I’d already dismantled the book for another bookish decor project, which you can see here.) A small faux marble table on the right made for a nice nightstand for a guest. A wire basket holding books on the wall and a chair create a cozy nook.

I hope our guests enjoyed their time in our bookish guest bedroom. 

Entry #23 – Book with a Message:

books_messages

Entry #23 – Book with a message:  Discuss a book that had a meaningful message behind it.

Okay, so I couldn’t pick just one book for this post.  Instead, I went with three: Wonder by R.J. Palacio, Deadline by Chris Crutcher, and Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher.  These books couldn’t be more different from one another, but they all share important life lessons with their readers.

1.  Wonder by R.J. Palacio

Wonder tells the story of Auggie Pullman, a ten-year-old with a facial deformity, who is about to attend public school for the first time.  August experiences bullying—as do a few brave friends who stick by him.  You hear from Auggie’s side of the story, as well as his classmates, his teenage sister, and his sister’s boyfriend.  It’s amazing to see what they all learn from living in Auggie’s world.  You also get some great quotes about kindness thanks to an assignment from one of Auggie’s teachers.  Although Amazon lists the book for grades 3-7, I think older kids and adults will get enjoy it just as much as a younger audience.  With bullying being such a hot topic lately, this book approaches it in a beautifully simple and honest way.  Instead of demanding No Bullying or Stop Bullying, it urges Treat Everyone with Kindness, which is a message I can certainly get behind.

quote_wonder

2.  Deadline by Chris Crutcher

Chris Crutcher is well known for his stories Athletic Shorts, Running Loose, and Chinese Handcuffs.  In Deadline, high school senior Ben Wolf finds out that he may not live to the end of his senior year.  He decides to keep his illness and prognoses a secret from everyone, and instead, decides to push himself to try new things.  He musters up the courage to ask out the gorgeous girl, he becomes a star on the football team, and he challenges his teachers.  The message here is to live each day as if it were your last.  It also challenges readers to think for themselves and not judge people by their appearances.  I recently picked up this novel at the Half-Price Bookstore, and I look forward to reading it again.  I think it’d make a great novel to use with high school juniors and seniors who are questioning what to do with their lives.

quote_deadline

3.  Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

In this novel, a teenager named Clay Jensen receives a package unlike any other.  The box contains cassette tapes narrated by Hannah, a classmate who recently committed suicide.  As Clay listens to the tapes, he comes to understand that Hannah is explaining the thirteen reasons why she was motivated to take her own life—and that only people who were part of the reason are receiving the tapes.  Clay listens to the tapes to find out why he is partially to blame.  Through rumors, ruined reputations, and teenage egocentrism, you’ll uncover what life was like for Hannah.  Readers will realize that even if they are not participating in the rumors and bullying directly, sitting on the sidelines can be just as hurtful.  The message of this novel seems to be treating others with kindness as well.  It also promotes paying attention to people around you and stepping in when necessary.  I listened to this book on audio CD before reading the book version.  I preferred the audiobook because there were different voices for the main characters, and it was almost like listening to Hannah’s voice on cassette tape.  Asher’s story is dark and troubling.  He’s going to be an author to watch.  He has also co-authored the slightly lighter story The Future of Us, which I’d also recommend reading.

quote_13reasons

What books have important messages for you?