Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Books, books and more books....

Last time out to Barnes and Noble I succombed, yes I purchased yet another book. If you are counting that is now 17 books on my nightstand. Seventeen. I think I have a book addiction. If I am honest with you, it is really 18 as I am currently reading the final Harry book as well.

Eventually we are going to have to add a second story to the house due to all the books we own because I never get rid of a book. Ever. I also am somewhat of a book elitest as I never buy paperbacks unless the book simply isn't available in hard back and I always try to get a first editions. It says something when Frodo asked if he could have my book collection when I die. Of all the things I own he wants the books, which in some way makes me a wee bit proud of him.

So I bought a really pretty, foil green copy of Wicked/Son of a Witch. Now comes the problem, I will finish up the rereading of Harry Potter by this weekend and where do I start in the pile of 17 books? Should I read something classic like Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov or should I read something that I know I will love like Fulghum's What on Earth Have I Done. I really don't know where to start and it is beginning to bother me. I was thinking back how my tastes in novels has changed over the years. In high school and college I loved Stephen King, couldn't get enough. I haven't read anything by him in decades though. It seems to me, once a great author comes about and they sign a contract with a publisher, well there is no kind way to say this, but eventually they start putting drivel out. So ended my book affair with King as I tired of reading his drivel in the late 80's.

On my nightstand I have a copy of Joseph Heller's Catch-22. It is one of those books, that in my opinion, should have been on my high school reading list that wasn't. Same thing with Dostoevsky. Occasionally I will pick up a book I know I should have read and never did and usually I am very happy I read it, like with To Kill A Mockingbird. I started Heller and I just could not get into it and I never leave a book half read - but there it sits, bookmark stuck in between the pages and me dreading picking it up again. We dance around each other like soon to be former lovers, eyes not meeting but each knowing that it will end, but boy am I dreading every single word of it.

I was thinking there should have been more books required of me to read in school. I remember a lot of Shakespeare was read, Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, Drieser's Sister Carrie and way too much Steinbeck. Did I mention I really dislike Steinbeck? But the thing you have to remember was in those days book burning was still going on. Not at our school but the 'other' high school in town regularly had book burnings. Inevitably it would make the newspapers and I would rush out to buy whatever was being burned. Doing that introduced me to Vonnegut and a few other authors that I think added to my enjoyment of reading more than it took away from. One thing is certain: ban a book, put a fatwa on an author and you can guarantee I will read that long as it isn't Catch-22.

*By the way, I finished Harry up and went with Fulghum.



See, that's where we're different. I'll give a book 100 pages, maybe 150 at maximum, and if I'm not hooked it's all over.

There are plenty more out there waiting to be read.

I am like that in all other aspects of life - leaving things half-done. Just not books, that would drive me bonkers!

I wouldn't say it's a matter of leaving something undone. To me, leaving something undone is not folding the laundry when it comes out of the dryer, or letting the fresh roll of toilet paper sit on the counter instead of putting it in the holder.

It's more that I'm choosing not to spend any more time with a book that doesn't hold any appeal. If I don't form some sort of attachment to either the plot or the characters, it seems rather pointless to finish the story that I care nothing about.

Just sayin'...

Very good points - I should heed your Martha advice ;)

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