I HAVE READ A BOOK!!! An actual book, full-length, no pictures, more than 32 pages. My original plan was to read this book over the course of three days, getting other tasks on my vacation to-do list done as well. And then it happened. By page three, I was sucked in, only to find myself turning the last, 313th page, with a sigh--six hours later. Cooking not started, laundry left undone, crocheting untouched. I had once again fallen into a book coma. Readers, you know what it's like, right, to have the opportunity to get enmeshed so deeply in a story that all else falls away? I did that so often growing up, before housekeeping and job and children-related tasks ate up most of my waking hours. But today, on winter break, with the chicken still defrosting and the teen children minding their own business, I was able to blissfully enter the world of....
John Green's The Fault in Our Stars. I bought the book awhile back, after reading other novels by Green for Young Adult Lit in grad school. And there it sat, on my coffee table, gathering dust and getting buried in other book purchases, until an email popped up in my inbox, asking for volunteers to read it for an SHSU book study involving book formats. I quickly signed up for the "print group" (as opposed to the ebook and audio groups), and set my goal for vacation reading. So today, I sat down, and six hours later, this is what I posted on the Edmodo group for the study:
" I love love love John Green's writing! For me, it wasn't even the type of story in which I anxiously awaited the next page; I just got sucked into this world, and didn't want to leave, no matter how sad or tragic. There was just too much love, humor, compassion, and optimism--even wrapped in teenage witticisms--for me to want to let go."
Okay, so there you have my review. I know The Fault in Our Stars has moved many readers to tears, so I'm putting it out there in case you're interested and don't like being blindsided. While I had some "oh" and "awwww" and teary-eyed moments, the hope and wisdom I got out of almost every page just wouldn't let me wallow in the sadness that also pervades the story.
No more about that; don't want to give too much away! So on to the books that were found under our tree this Christmas. Santa brought two books to my children: Santa Calls, by William Joyce, and Hercule Poirot's Christmas: A Holiday Mystery by Agatha Christie. My son found the cutest board book with an owl finger puppet attached, to add to my owl collection, and he gave his sister a book on Japanese idol statues (they're both fans of anime, and she's studying Japanese in college). And I'm pretty sure most of us have gift cards to bookstores burning holes in our pockets right now! It just wouldn't be Christmas without new books. :-)
My latest read, both for read-aloud at work and for my own pleasure at home, is Laura Geringer and William Joyce's Nicholas St. North and the Battle of the Nightmare King, part of the series on which this season's "Rise of the Guardians" movie is based. I'm hoping to get it done before winter break is over. If not, I'll find out what happens along with my fourth grade group at work. I can at least be satisfied that I read at least one book over the holidays!
Happy Holidays, and here's hoping there were books as gifts for you this season!