More than one friend has told me about reading a really good book, and parsing out the last few chapters, to make the read last. And each time I’ve heard this, I’ve marveled. Whenever I’m reading a great book, I want nothing more than to zip right through it. It’s all I can do to function properly within the parameters of the rest of my life when I’m in the middle of a page-turner.
But now, I don’t know, things have changed. These days, when I read a book I’m super-into I get a dark feeling as I near its end. And when the last page has been read and the book is closed, I actually experience a bit of mourning.
I’m going through that right now, as I just finished Elizabeth Gilbert’s City of Girls. I had gotten comfortable with “Vivian” and her New York City life. I liked my time with her. I liked her. And now that I’m done with the book, I miss her. I miss her wit and her insight. I miss her unique-to-her skills and sense of adventure. I miss that book’s world.
For some time I’ve been aware of the fact that I will never live long enough to read all the books I’d like. That’s heavy enough. Couple that with the aching that accompanies the finishing of a lovely tome and I find it’s a bit much.
But I am a reader. No denying it. And that’s why Graham Swift’s Waterland is at my side, ready to introduce me to a new world, to new characters. I have no idea what’s coming, as this book is on loan from my friend Lorinda. No matter – I’m ready.