Okay, so I must have read at least one book, a real chapter book, before I opened "Charlotte's Web" in the third grade, but no book before had ever pulled me into another world like that creation of whole cream and tears did.
It was the very first book that the teacher had assigned to the joint 3rd/4th grade reading group. That first day we were assigned to read nine entire pages, and write a report on it after! I was shocked, I tell you, shocked! How on earth was I to complete such a herculean feat? Why simply wading through two pages of my sister's Harlequin Romances had taken hours and nearly bored my poor seven year old mind out of its skull. But I plunged in, and fifteen minutes later realized that I liked reading.
I was captivated by the characters, led on by the plot, and devastated by the ending.
It still sits in my mind like a warm summer day.