And I’m in Love With This Book

“I’m in love with you, and I’m not in the business of denying myself the simple pleasure of saying true things. I’m in love with you, and I know that love is just a shout into the void, and that oblivion is inevitable, and that we’re all doomed and that there will come a day when all our labor has been returned to dust, and I know the sun will swallow the only earth we’ll ever have, and I am in love with you.”  – Augustus Waters, The Fault in Our Stars

I read this to Batman last night. I stopped reading, looked up from where I sat on the recliner and recited these lines. I had to. It’s just one of those things that you can’t hear just once. At least in your head. This paragraph, like so many others in The Fault in Our Stars, need to be repeated, recited and shared. It’s an insult to them if they aren’t because lines like these aren’t meant to pocketed in memory. They’re meant to be revisited. Over and over again, like an old friend.

I’m in love with this book. Is it obvious? I started it on Sunday night and here I am, Tuesday eve and I wonder how I had time to fall into this great, breathtaking love affair. Now I know you’re wondering if I cried. Pretty much everyone who reads the book/sees the movie cried. I thought I was above giving into those basic emotions when reading about a girl with cancer who falls in love. I told you—I believe it was yesterday—that I’d remain strong and I did. Strong enough NOT to cry at my desk. Strong enough to keep reading when I wanted to pretend there might be a different ending, even though the words were right there, on the page in front of me.

It was difficult.

Sometimes you read something and it stays with you an hour, a day, a week. It’s memorable, but with time, it becomes a series of rough points that you sort of remember. Or maybe it’s the feeling you remember. It’s how the material made you feel, what it got you to think. But even that, with time, will fade.  The characters (and their story) in The Fault in Our Stars will stay with me for a while, I’m guessing.  Because good stories, like theirs, aren’t easily erasable. And I don’t want them to be. They exist in a special place that we, the readers, hold secret. It’s a place where all our best friends reside, a place we can always go to seek refuge from reality and, if we’re in need of it, to chase those feelings that made us fall in love in the first place.

I didn’t cry, but I was at work. I had to force myself to keep reading, even though I was torn. Yes, I NEEDED to know what happened, but I also didn’t want to know. Because knowing made it real and the more words that passed, the closer to the end I would get. And that, in itself, is its own sad crime. I’m probably going to reread it again. Mostly because it demands a second read through, but also out of respect. Magical, lyrical lines like the ones that began this post deserve more than one turn to be heard; read. They deserve to live infinitely.

I will say, on a side note, that maybe I took an extra liking to the book because part of it takes place in Amsterdam, which, in my opinion, is a highly magical place. I’ve been twice (once in 2007 and again in 2010) and everything described of the canals and the bikes and the row houses is extremely accurate. (The author, John Green spent a few weeks in the city to write it). Hazel Grace and Augustus even visited the Anne Frank House which I’ve had the pleasure of visiting twice as well.

Because I can’t physically impart the emotions and love I feel for this book and DEMAND you start reading it today, I’ve included some pictures from my own trips. Hopefully you’ll get to the city. And what’s more, you’ll pick up this book and fall in love with a story you won’t easily erase. Hopefully, Hazel Grace and Augustus will stay with you in your secret space like they are (and will remain) with me.

 

Your basic AMAZING street view. Yeah. Heaven.

Your basic AMAZING street view. Yeah. Heaven.

And another angle.

And another angle.

Breathe it in.

Breathe it in.

The several bikes that you will find EVERYWHERE.

The several bikes that you will find EVERYWHERE.

The Rijksmuseum which is mentioned in the book.

The Rijksmuseum which is mentioned in the book.

So pretty.

So pretty.

Another big building. Awesome.

Another big building. Awesome.

The magical, beautiful night.

The magical, beautiful night.

And the Anne Frank House monument thingy.

And the Anne Frank House monument thingy.

Read it.

And fall in love.

No More Wave Reading, Okay?

I’m trying to read more. It’s what a writer should do. But to be honest, I’m what’s known as a “wave-reader.” You probably haven’t heard of this and that’s because I just made it up. But it means what it sounds like it means. I read in waves. A few months on. A few months off. I’m sure that’s a poor example of what a writer should do. But this is a blog of honesty. And there it is. I’m a wave-reader so sometimes I go a while without a book.

Now you know.

I’m trying to change this. I’m on my third book after I decided to ride the tidal wave and start my plunge into the literary world again now that, you know, I’m trying to be legit and all. So reading is sort of required. (Yes, I know it’s not really required but I think I should be swimming in the pool rather than sitting on the edge with a toe in. I don’t know what’s with all the water analogies I post on here. Maybe it’s because I really want to be a mermaid.) So I started reading Taint by S.L. Jennings, and that decision mostly had to do with the fact that I giggled at the name every time I saw it on a reader’s book blog. (I’d post a link to it but APPARENTLY the link thingy isn’t working because I spent my ENTIRE break trying to make a link to the Goodreads page but the universe has scorned me.) I’d recommend it for anyone who likes quick, fast romances… er…erotica with a somewhat love story weaved in. Also for anyone who enjoyed Fifty Shades of Grey as it has mucho sex topics/scenes. It was a quick read; I finished it in a day and moved onto the last book I was reading which was Femme, by Delia Strange.

Femme takes place on a planet where men are slaves to women and to the touring Earth heroine, Kaley Blackburn, it’s not what she expected. This was a good book. It questions the flaws of would-be utopias and the struggles of friendship and love. Mrs. Strange, like me, is a fellow indie author, except (and as I put in an email to her) she’s got her shit more together than me. (This is where I was going to put in a link to her book but… you know… life and all. Instead: http://www.deliastrange.com/).

And, although it pains me to say this, I selected my next book based on the MOVIE TRAILER I saw for it. I know. I’m that person. We all can’t be amazingly perfect enough to stumble upon the book first and then get excited about the movie. Sometimes we do things backwards.

So what am I reading you ask?

The Fault in Our Stars, because I’m a sappy girl and I love a good romance. And apparently, a good cry, because that’s all I hear happens when you read the book/watch the movie. I’m a little less than halfway through and no tears yet. But that’s probably because everyone is still alive. Yay. Actually, there’ve been a few laughs so I guess I’m really going to loose it when it ends because I like the character. *deep inhale* I’ll be strong.

I’m still struggling with the content of this blog. I was thinking maybe I’d throw in some hardcore book reviews but I’d have to do some research on them since I never review things. I start out with very clear, concise idea of what I liked and didn’t, and they blur into a conversation with myself about something entirely different and I know I’ve just pissed the reader off. I can *try* to be more level headed here and only do reviews on books that I simply *must* share with the world. Should we do that? Are we all in agreement that that is what we shall do?

You’re nodding your head, aren’t you?

Okay, then! Book reviews for either really, really, amazing, spectacularly AWESOME books or the worst kind ever. The ones that make me want to face plant to spare my eyes the pain. Oh this has happened. It has happened a lot. But I will try not to do that and focus on the good reviews. So, we can all enjoy the world of literature together.

I’ll let you know how The Fault in Our Stars goes and then, of course, what the outcome of the movie is, since I’m OBVIOUSLY seeing it. After that, any book suggestions? I still have a while to wait for the next (and last *tear*) book in the Lux series to come out. What are you guys reading? Any suggestions? A book of your own perhaps?