Friday, March 3, 2017

Kissing Frogs

     It was 1:00 AM and I wanted to finish my book before turning out the light, so I began skimming. That's never a good sign. After fifty pages, I decided the book wasn't worth the loss of sleep. In the morning I decided it wasn't worth the loss of time to finish the last seventy pages and dropped it into the library return pile. I felt cheated. I had neglected housework to read that book, but at least I hadn't gone out on a limb and bought it. I have made that mistake before, bet money on a book I haven't read, and it makes the keen edge of disappointment even more acute when the book turns out to be a bust. Two years ago I bought a popular historical romance with so much bust in it, I dropped it in the trash bin after reading only a quarter of it. There is a difference between trollop and Trollope--it's called codswallop.

     I have spent most of my adult life reading the classics, but, these days, I have been reading and buying more modern literature. By modern I mean books written in the last fifty years--the potential classics of the next century. The upside is that I have discovered some delightful new authors to populate my bookshelf and wax rhapsodic over when someone asks me to recommend a good book. The downside is the trash bin. And that feeling you get when a used car salesman gets the best of you.

     I realize that my personal taste in literature is not by any means the barometer of accepted opinion, after all, I didn't enjoy War and Peace or The Great Gatsby. Who will want to read my blog after an admission like that? But I know what I like and what makes a book worthwhile to me.

     And I also know that a girl's got to kiss a lot of frogs before she finds a prince.


  1. Yep, one woman's prince is another woman's frog! I'm only a casual reader of Agatha Christie books while my sister is an expert on her writing. My recommendation to her that Charlotte MacLeod's books were a hoot just didn't go over well and my fave of Dorothy Sayers not much better.

    I didn't care for Gatsby either, or the movies. But I did like War and Peace--if skipping the battle scenes counts as having read it. But then I obsessed on Russian literature in my 20s. Now it probably would not be my cup of tea.

    I know when I've met a prince though. It's when I read the first chapter and then read the last chapter because I don't want to hurry through the book to find out what happens. I want to savor every word and so I peek ahead.

    Codswallop, have to remember that!

    1. These days, I seem to gravitate toward books that either move me or make me laugh; books that enchant me with their writing and imagery; and books that make me think, or speak more eloquently than I can about the things I already think. Nowadays, if I read a book that ends mired in reality, it had better make the journey well worth my while if it wishes to avoid being flung across the room in frustration! The Warden was one of those...worthwhile reading despite the less than fairytale ending. In fact, I went out and bought it!

      I have a long list of books, recommended by you in your posts, that I have still to read.

  2. Love this post, made me laugh and think twice about buying a book by it's cover.