For the first time in about seven months, I’m able to read a book of my own choosing. Actually, let me rephrase that. I now have the time to read a book of my own choosing. At the start of the year, I foolishly carried a book in my bag with the delusion that I would have time to steal a glance at a few pages here and there. I did not and I eventually came to terms with this. But now I’m study free so it’s BOOK TIME, BITCHES.
And what have I chosen? Well, I have a somewhat longish history of choosing very depressing books after a long book drought. Last time, it was The Road by Cormac McCarthy. God, that was a dire book. Good but fucking grim as all fuck. This time, it’s The Colour Purple by Alice Walker and things aren’t starting out well for poor Celie. In fact, things are pretty grim indeed but I’ll press on. I’m intrigued. The girl’s got grit and I want to find out how she gets on. I saw the movie as a child but I can’t remember much about it so it feels quite fresh so far.
I’m mostly a fiction girl. I do go for the occasional memoir/autobiography, history book or Malcolm Gladwell style read but my heart will forever belong to fiction. I love losing myself in the pages of something I know has come from someone else’s imagination. Something totally (or partially) thought up and then written down with a storyteller’s flair and wonderful way with words.
I feel a sense of panic when I come to the end of a book that I’ve really, really loved; I don’t want it to end. It’s depressing when you have to put that book down and start thinking about the next. You cast about in a funk. How will I ever beat it? I was transported. I grew attached to the characters. I fell in love with the words. I didn’t want it to end. Everything seems pointless and bleak but you always find something. Even if it’s not the next book or the next, something always come along.
I’ve come across books that have so affected me I’ve read the last few chapters/pages literally sobbing because I know something terrible is going to happen but I’m not sure what (thanks a million, The Time Traveller’s Wife). And, yes, it may have been embarrassing to have my partner walk in on me in such a state and it may have been hard to read the pages while blubbering like a fool but I’ll take a book that makes me feel something that intense any day over something where I close the pages and forget what I read within 20mins.
It’s one of my absolute favourite feelings to be reading a book that I do not under any circumstances want to put down. After every page, I convince myself to read just one more page. And then one more. And oh better finish this chapter. And the next page is just a half page may as well read that too. And then next thing you know it’s late and you need to get to sleep otherwise you’ll be tired tomorrow but you don’t really care. You. Just. Want. To. Know. What. Happens. Next.
That’s what I love about books. They’re this alternate universe you get to visit for awhile and, at the end, you put them on your bookshelf and you can re-visit them whenever you want. Constant, papery companions that smell better and better as they ripen on the shelf (yes, I’m one of those Luddites that refuses to switch to a Kindle or anything like that).
I think it’s safe to say I’m looking forward to doing some more book reviews now that I have the time to read some books. 🙂