Words of Comfort

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Our Friday Fox asked, “What book(s) would you choose if you were asked to read to an ill, adult friend?”

I really struggled with this topic. I thought about what I’d want someone to read to me if I were too ill to read myself, and I really couldn’t pin my choices down. My choice of reading material varies from day to day, and even at various times of the day. As for having someone read to me, I’m not sure I’d enjoy that. I haven’t had much success with audio books, because whenever I’ve tried to just LISTEN to a story I end up falling asleep. I guess whatever is read to me needs to be lively and entertaining enough to keep me awake.

I know that each person’s reading/listening preference is unique. I’d definitely ask the friend what he/she was in the mood for, and then I’d look for those titles, or at least books in that genre. If the person isn’t fussy, then I’d ask whether he/she is in the mood to be entertained, challenged, or calmed. Depending on the answer, I might choose from some of my favorites:

If the patient wants to be entertained with a comedy and/or action, then I might read from some of these titles:

  • One of Jana DeLeon’s delightful mysteries 
  • One for the Money by Janet Evanovich – the first of the Stephanie Plum books
  • The DaVinci Code by Dan Brown
  • Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (since I haven’t read it yet, I could read it to someone else!) 
  • A former teacher might enjoy collections of funny things students have said or written, such as Hilarious Kid Stories by Angela Watson

Some people might prefer a challenge

  • Historical fiction, such as All Quiet on the Western Front, or maybe a historical romance
  • Non-fiction: historical accounts, such as Elie Wiesel’s Night or self-help books such as Stupid Things I Won’t Do When I Get Old by Steven Petrow
  • Books with jokes and riddles

Others might simply want to listen to something calming

  • Garrison Keillor’s stories about Lake Wobegon
  • Children’s stories: Love You Forever by Robert Munsch, Beatrix Potter stories
  • Any of the Chicken Soup books that relates to the person’s interest 
  • Scripture

Hopefully, I’d be able to discover what the friend was in the mood for and be able to find something to fit his/her needs. But even more, I’d hope that my presence and voice could bring comfort to an ailing friend.


About Patricia Kiyono

During her first career, Patricia Kiyono taught elementary music, computer classes, elementary classrooms, and junior high social studies. She now teaches music education at the university level. She lives in southwest Michigan with her husband, not far from her five children, nine grandchildren (so far), and great-granddaughters. Current interests, aside from writing, include sewing, crocheting, scrapbooking, and music. A love of travel and an interest in faraway people inspires her to create stories about different cultures. Check out her sweet historical contemporary romances at her Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/Patricia-Kiyono/e/B0067PSM5C/
This entry was posted in favorite books, Friendship, helping others, Patricia Kiyono, reading, reading preferences, What if and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Words of Comfort

  1. Jeff Salter says:

    This will be a tough topic for me, since (like you), I’m not fond of the “reading experience” when I’m the passive listener.
    But perhaps I can come up with a title or two before Hound Day.


  2. I had forgotten that I added this, so now I have to put my own thinking cap on!
    I like the idea of Harry Potter, Wobegon and One For the Money! I am unfamiliar with some of your choices, and will try to look into them.


    • Patricia Kiyono says:

      I haven’t actually read the Stupid Things book, but it certainly looks like an entertaining one, especially at my stage of life.


  3. Elaine Cantrell says:

    Tough call isn’t it?


  4. Diane Burton says:

    When loved ones were dying, I read Psalms to them. No idea if it brought comfort to them, but it did to me. When Hubs was so sick, I bought some books to read to him. He’s not fond of fiction but enjoys history and biographies. Now that he’s better I’m going to hang onto them. Hopefully, I won’t use them.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Patricia Kiyono says:

      I hope not, too! I’m sure he appreciated you doing that for him. The Psalms have a lot of comforting verses, both for the listener and the reader.


  5. This is really a hard decision to make.
    Jokes and riddles are a great choice. Wyatt tells me jokes and riddles when I have a panic attack so I do know that listening to those and trying to solve the riddles can take your mind off of not feeling well.

    Liked by 1 person

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