Okay . . . picture this (really) worst-case scenario: It’s cold and raining, your boyfriend/girlfriend has just dumped you, you’ve just been fired, the pile of unpaid bills is sky-high, your beloved pet has recently died, and you think you’re coming down with a cold. All you want to do (other than hiding under the covers) is to curl up with a good book, something warm and comforting that will make you feel better.
What do you read?
(Any bets on how quickly somebody says the Bible or some other religious text? A good choice, to be sure, but to be honest, I was thinking more along the lines of fiction…. Unless I laid it on a little strong in the string of catastrophes? Maybe I should have just stuck to catching a cold on a rainy day….)
Two books occured to me immediately: ALICE’s ADVENTURES in WONDERLAND because not a word is wasted, you wouldn’t want to stop even to look out of the window, let alone to feel sorry for yourself. It’s funny, surreal, delightful, diverting, would remind me of my father reading to me and spirit me away from all my troubles.
The other book is AFTER YOU’D GONE, Maggie O’Farrell’s first novel – which, in part, wouldn’t cheer me up, but it is funny at times – and at times I laughed and cried at the same time. It’s such an all-enveloping book that I would have to forget what was happening to me, even if it was, at least partly, because I found myself submerged in another’s difficulties and sadnesses.
Although isn’t that what so often helps? I’m not the only one? My troubles aren’t half as bad as hers? Will she make it? (You see I’ve forgotten about myself already.) By the way, this edition is a bound proof … which I absolutely can’t remember how I got.