Reader Friday: Jump Inside a Book

As a kid I loved the Gumby (and his pal, Pokey) animated shorts, especially for the times when they would “jump into” a famous novel and appear in the world of that story. They’d interact with the characters and influence outcomes.

If you could jump into a novel and be part of the story, what novel would you choose, and what would you do inside that world?

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21 thoughts on “Reader Friday: Jump Inside a Book

  1. The instant I read this post the immediate thing that came to mind was that I’d be immediately jumping into a Zane Grey western having wild adventures in the 19th century American West. 😎 As to what specifically I’d be doing, I don’t know. The mere thought of getting to live back in a time where you could breathe and move and concrete and asphalt weren’t the primary land formations is so exciting I hardly care. 😎

  2. First, I must proudly state that I won the 3rd Place Prize in the University of Texas Student Film Festival for my animated Gumby short. I will not mention the year.

    I’d like to jump into the original story that became “Quest for Fire” (1911’s “La Guerre du Feu” by Rosny) and join the three intrepid tribe members on their quest for a new source of fire. I’d be the D’Artagnan to the Three Musketeers, if you will. And maybe show them how to make their own fire! (but then they wouldn’t meet Rae Dawn Chong, would they? ;-(

  3. I’d go for “West with the Night” by Beryl Markham. Okay, it’s not a novel. It’s her memoir, but what a life! I’d be best friends with Beryl and Isak Dinesen. I’d join in the hunt for lions with the Kikuyu tribesmen, help train thoroughbreds, and give Beryl a white scarf to wear when she prepares to fly solo across the Atlantic.

  4. What a mesmerizing question, Mr. Bell. I will be thinking about it a long time, I predict.

    A Wrinkle In Time is my choice. Loved it as a child, and I still dust off the jacket sometimes. I now own a beautiful hardcover with the entire trilogy within…the first, then A Wind In The Door, then A Swiftly Tilting Planet.

    And of course, I’d be Meg Murry. Her rooted-in-reality personality is mine. I was a lot like her as a teen. By the end of the story, she’d learned a thing or two from Charles Wallace, and, of course, that fascinating trio, Mrs. Whatsit, Mrs. Who, and Mrs. Which. 🙂

  5. I’d go into my first book trilogy, unpublished, because it’s been my mental escape for many years. The characters have been my second family, and, as first books are, they are a bit autobiographical but much more interesting than the real world. Their struggle and victory against death, loss, and shattered dreams reflected my own.

    A life tip for writers: Sometimes, the book you write is more for you than it is for readers. And that’s okay.

  6. I would not go into my absolute favorite books because they’re too dark, and I already went to Harry Potter world last summer (I doubt the real thing would be any better than the universal attraction). So I’d have to choose Percy Jackson. Cool gadgets, powers, obstacle courses and the occasional quest… and I’m not gonna die because it no one does unless they want to (this does not count Riordan’s current series where he’s throwing in all the fad tropes just to stay relevant.

    I think I’d just hang out at camp halfblood.

  7. The Frontiersmen, by Allan Eckert. Although listed as history, it contained a lot of extrapolation, and is written in the style of historical fiction. It was my favorite book growing up, is set in the area where I now live, and the author lived in our town for a number of years. I have an autographed early edition.

    I would have loved to have traveled with Simon Kenton, and witnessed his escapes and triumphs among the Shawnee Indians.

  8. I got it down to three:

    The Man with the Golden Gun – Ian Flemming. I have read all or the Flemming books. This would be the best place to go. Jamaica, hunting a killer and drinking rum? Hard to go wrong.

    The Sign of the Four – Arthur Conan Doyle. Just have to.

    3001: The Final Odyssey – Arthur C. Clarke

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