When I finished my dissertation last month—the culmination of four years of work at varying degrees of effort—there became a weird void in the universe. I’ve celebrated, but you can only get away with that for so long. I’ve been congratulated, but honestly, how many times can someone say, “Well done!,” particularly when I haven’t graduated yet? And there has been no achievement pop-up ala PS3/X-Box saying MASTERS COMPLETED to encourage me to move on. It’s all a bit of a let-down, really.
And what happened to all the energy and enthusiasm I’d been putting toward that endeavour over the last few years? Instead of instantly appearing in some other part of my life, it’s mysteriously vanished. I used to find forty hours a day to do a thousand things more than I was mentally able to do. Now I can barely find eight hours to just sleep.
|My brain right now: La la la, pretty flowers.|
So I’m not reading Kate Atkinson’s anything, despite that I love her work. I was going to, but even the sight of the hardback intimidates me. I bet it’s full of fleshed-out characters and intricate plots. The first page is no doubt more complicated than my brain’s current state. No, I’m reading...
Sorry, I can’t actually say. It’s too embarrassing. But I’ll present this excerpt to give you the flavour:
And then he leaned in and kissed her again, slower this time. He laid her gingerly down on the rocks by a magical stream in a forgotten ruin with darkness all around them, and it was perfect.
Yes, that says magical stream. No, I did not edit to make it more ridiculous. And by the way, it isn’t even a romance novel.
Aside from a title and cover art that make a strong case for the privacy benefits of ebook readers, the novel itself is a great argument for why there are so many kinds of books in the world. For whatever it is (or isn’t) it’s exactly what I need right now. This book does not make me think. It does not challenge my preconceptions or anything else, except that I guess the words are small so sometimes it challenges my eyesight. I already know how it will end and I suspect I already know who lives and dies, who gets together, who breaks up, and who appears in the next book (of course there’s a next book.) But I’m enjoying it, and it’s letting me enjoy it without fighting me at all. Because if I read a book that fought me right now, I might die.
Vive le trash fiction.
Photo: Blue Sky Meets Field Of Flowers by Nate Kay on flickr