You know that feeling when you decide to reread a book after many years? You know how you look forward to a comforting, familiar read, perhaps with new insights this time round, but mostly, you want to revel in a familiar story? You know how you start the reread and think, I barely remember the beginning, it’s like reading it for the first time! You know the creeping realization that you have not actually read this book? That you owned it, gave it a rating on Goodreads, referenced it in one of your first blog posts, and mentioned it on social media as recently as this week, but you did not actually read the thing?
Bookish confession coming up:
I never read The Corrections.
It’s not (just) that I’m delusional. After some head-scratching, I figured it out: I confused Douglas Coupland’s All Families are Psychotic with The Corrections. Now I understand why I was waiting for the Lambert family to sit down and watch a NASA launch – a big plot point in Coupland’s book. In my defense:
- The books came out within weeks of each other, just before and after 9/11.
- Both books were by arguably the biggest American/Canadian authors of the moment (Coupland more arguably than Franzen, I guess, but in my mind…)
- I bought them both on the same day, in a huge second-hand bookstore score (newly released hardcovers!)
- Both books are about messed up families trying to get together one last time. One for Christmas, one to watch a spaceship launch.
I atoned the only way I could: power-read The Corrections over the past week. And I liked it more than my fake-reading, so that’s something!
If you’ve experienced this particular book nerd problem (ugh,) please let me know so I don’t feel like such a loser.