I love being transported to new cities, meeting new people, and gaining insight into another time in history, another culture, another way of seeing the world, all through the pages of a book and the thoughtful smattering of ink on a page. I am in continual awe that we all learn these 26 letters that make up this dictionary full of words, yet some people can manipulate and frame them in such lovely, significant ways that leave an imprint on my heart.
I think a lot can be learned from how characters handle tragedy. I think our world and our understanding of the world can be broadened through books. I think books offer us a chance to better understand our place in this vast world. And sometimes, in reading just how painful and difficult and seemingly impossible life is for others, I am reminded just how lucky I am and how we must find beauty in our everyday experiences to make it through this crazy, messed up, gorgeous world. Plus, I am a sucker for beautiful words and sentences. It makes me really, ridiculously happy.
Speaking of words, how's that for a long introduction?
An aside: We were talking about the word chillaxin' the other day (that's a weird conversation topic, I know) and I expressed my strong dislike for it. The kids asked why and I said I wasn't really in the business of combining words, but instead I liked to use as many words as possible and stretch them out nice and long to get my point across. Jim thought that was a very accurate explanation and I've proved my point again here!
OK, back to the topic at hand. Books. In particular Me Before You by Jojo Moyes.
This book made me think. In fact, it continues to make me think about people with disabilities, particularly those in wheelchairs. It made me feel deeply. It made me roll my eyes. It also made me ugly cry. It was everything a really sad, thought-provoking book should be.
If you're like me, the book won't hook you right off the bat. Give it some time. I am definitely glad that I did.
So, go forth and read Me Before You. Then call or email or message or one of the other 33 ways we have of contacting each other so we can discuss the book. I can't wait!
*Shout out to my friend, Jaclyn, for the recommendation. Although we haven't known each other long, she knew this depressingly beautiful book would be right up my alley.
What are you reading now? And what should I add to my miles long reading list?