Books have been a constant joy in my life. From the moment I could turn pages they fascinated me and by the time I could transform squiggles on the page into words and sentences and stories, books had become a non-negotiable part of my life. I have many, many of books in my house and seeing them on the shelf, in piles around the house, on my bedside table (currently 12 sitting there) gives me a sense of reassurance, adventure and delightful anticipation of what lies on the next page. What might I learn? Where might I get swept away to? Who might I meet?
Out of the blue this week I have been gifted two books by lovely friends. Both books look fascinating and are on topics close to my heart – Buenos Aires and French women. Thank you Libby and Suad. The only difficult thing is to decide which one shall I read first.
I love borrowing a real, hardcopy book from the library. I like the feel of a book in my hands and the flexibility to read almost anywhere. Physically going to the library to find and borrow the book is also a pleasure. One stumbles across all kinds of fascinating books as the eye roves the shelves. Books that haven’t appeared in a catalogue search because the search terms weren’t quite right, or their title didn’t grab your attention like a well-designed spine might do. Today’s expedition to library for one book resulted in four.
There is a sense of completeness in closing the cover of a book after reading the last page. The reading experience continues as you digest the words, pages, ideas and stories, but the actual reading is done. For me there is always a calm that comes with that closure, as I won’t start a new book for a few days. The tiny moment of literary inertia between what has been read and what will be read next is a lovely bubble of accomplishment and hope.
This morning I finished Amanda Palmer’s Art of Asking (for the second time). It’s an excellent book. And yes, I know I’m crazy for taking real books travelling, but I like the feel of a book and a device doesn’t have that.