As a college student, writer, and general lover of reading, books are one of my favorite things. If ever I get the chance to spend more than 2 minutes in a thrift store, you can find me crouched down in front of their used book section, and more often than not I will come away with at least one or two books that I’ve yet to read.

While I absolutely love diving into a great book, I’ve started to come across a bit of a problem: I have more books to read than time to actually read them. My collection of books continues to grow, especially with the recent arrival of my reading list from Oxford, and I feel like a little kid in a toy shop faced with following the rule of “just pick one.”

There’s so many to pick from, so many places to start, and it’s simply wonderful and overwhelming all at the same time. For now I’ve decided to lay aside those books that don’t apply to my upcoming tutorials at Oxford, which means Harry Potter is being put on hold. Sad as this may be, the next few weeks are looking pretty busy and full of amazing ideas and stories to dive into head first.

While this new list of books to read is a bit daunting at first glance, I’m finding myself being thrown into a world of reading that I haven’t fully explored since I was a kid. I read the Magician’s Nephew in about two days, and I found myself falling in love once more with the story I’ve read time and time again. Last night I began my quest into Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, a work that I have not yet read, and I am taking every spare moment I have to soak in as much of it as time allows.

There’s something about reading that can be both scary and exciting. When you have a timeline to work with, you worry you won’t get it all done. But when you’re flying through books left and right in order to get it all in, it becomes an exhilarating rush of character’s, themes, and endless lines of beautiful descriptive language; it is the inter-workings of these elements that transform what should be simple words printed on a page into something kind of magical. And that is exactly what makes the mad dash to the finish more than worth the work.

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