Monday, January 16, 2006

Once is never enough, but how many is too many?

For the fourth or maybe it's the fifth time I'm reading The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger. I don't seem to ever get tired of this book and many thanks to the very talented author and to my friend, Margo, for knowing me well enough to recommend the book. Also thanks to Cleggy for helping find a copy at one of our fav places, Half Price Books.

It won't be long before this book has the worn edges and creased spine that to me signifies a very loved book. It won't be long before the outside of the book reflects how I feel about it.

This book has become a sort of security blanket for me. Not unlike Linus, I carry it around to ward off the evils of my life. Boredom, stress, nervousness, and loneliness. All of these can be eliminated, albeit temporarily, with just the turn of a few pages. The feel of the book in my hands is comforting. The characters are familiar friends. The cadence and rhythm of the author's words are both soothing and compelling. Yes, I know what will happen and I know how it will end. But it never fails to knot my stomach, catch my breath, make me cry, make me laugh, and even make me sing. This book makes the hour at the laundromat fly by, makes me late getting back from lunch, and keeps me up far too late at night. All because once I pick it up I don't want to put it down again.

It isn't the only book I'm reading at the moment. While making my fourth (or is it fifth?) journey though this book I've read three e-books by a co-worker and new author,
Sally Swanson and Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris. I'm about to start the second book in Charlaine's Southern Vampire Series, Living Dead in Dallas and I can hardly wait to get into it. But that doesn't mean that The Time Traveler's Wife will be put back on the bookshelf. No, my security blanket will remain my constant companion. For me familiarity doesn't breed contempt. Instead it breeds comfort, peace of mind, and emotional well-being.

In case you're not getting the message here, I encourage you to read it for yourself. It's quite a journey. But all the really good books are, aren't they?

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