If you have trouble maneuvering your ship into port at Marseilles, steer yourself over to the master post.
I need a hero in two senses:
- A hero who can get me back on track with this read-along
- A hero in this story so I can have feelings about it
I don’t mean a hero I can “root for” (ugh, hate that phrase.) And I don’t mean the archetypal hero, like, an Odysseus type. I don’t need a hero’s journey and I don’t need Dantès to be more virtuous.
I need him to be wrong sometimes, to go too far. I need him to get what he wants and realize he wanted the wrong thing. I need him to have a fatal flaw.
I need him to have some passion, damn it!
Book blogger extraordinaire Kristilyn (@readinginwinter) wrote a fantastic piece about making bookish friends. She inspired me to write about last month’s yegbookswap.
Credit for yegbookswap goes to Andy (@agrabia) and Vanessa Grabia (@vgrabia). From the event website:
Time for an old-fashioned book swap. Here’s the lowdown:
1) Everyone brings three books. One they loved as a child. One they loved as a teenager. One they loved as an adult.
2) Used or new paperback books are encouraged, to keep down costs. Just make sure the used copies are in decent, readable shape.
3) All the books go on a table, we socialize and talk books for a while, and then everyone goes home with three new books.
And that’s that.
I was super excited to have a few hour’s worth of adult conversation. Meeting fellow book lovers was just a huge bonus. I had my four-month old in tow, but he’s pretty docile. I wisely left the two-year old at home. Apart from picking up some great new books for free, I met up with friends old and new, online and “real life”, and met people who I had no connection to at all. A huge thanks to Andy and Vanessa for putting this event together.
The books I brought to swap
- Child pick: Bart Simpson’s Guide to Life
- Teen pick: Wuthering Heights
- Adult pick: Mercy Among the Children
The funny thing about my child/teen/adult choices is that I read them all in my teens. I remember buying Bart Simpson’s Guide to Life when I was 13, I read Wuthering Heights for English in grade 11, and I read Mercy Among the Children when I was 19. I was a late bloomer and pretty much a child at 13, and though certainly not mature at 19, I remember thinking that this was such an “adult” book. Meaning I didn’t really understand it. I’ve reread it a few times since then.
The books I took home
- Child pick: Where the Wild Things Are
- Teen pick: The Long Dark Tea Time of the Soul
- Adult pick: Vineland
I had never read Where the Wild Things Are. I looked through it before reading it to Benjamin, and thought, huh, what’s the big deal? But Benjamin was taken with it right away. He calls it “The Jungle Book,” and I suppose one day he’ll learn about the other Jungle Book, but for how, he loves reciting the lines and talking about the “monsters.”
I’m nearly finished Douglas Adam’s The Long Dark Tea Time of the Soul, and it’s a perfect, light, funny book with a wild plot that I can’t imagine being resolved in the 50 or so remaining pages!
I know nothing about Thomas Pynchon or Vineland, except that it is actually one of the 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die! Bonus!!
So? Do you have a good group of bookish friends? How do you make more?
And, If you were at yegbookswap, I would love to read your review of the event!