Monday, June 15, 2009

Drug of Choice

I am an avid reader. Some people would say I'm a little fervent in my reading. If I like a book, I will forgo food, sleep, shower-whatever I have to-to keep reading and not have to put the book away for a moment.

I'm also a pretty quick reader, so I devour them in a day or so. The good news about that is, I read A LOT. The bad news is, I go through a lot of books which can be expensive if bought, or annoying if I run out of good reading material. My friends enjoy lending me books, even if they haven't read them yet, because they know they'll get them back the next day.

I'm like a junkie with my reading though. I can't wait to get my next "fix." And by that, I mean my next good, quality read. I can go through a bunch of romance novels, but they are like the cheap drugs that are mixed with other fillers. They don't really satisfy the urge for very long and they leave me wanting the real deal. I mean the premium stash is what I crave. Something that makes me think, that makes me question, that makes me see things in a new light or reconfigures my view of the world around me. Something transformative and awe inducing. It doesn't have to be heavily intellectual, per say, it just has to have a quality about it that makes me want to go back and re-read a passage or the whole kit and caboodle.

At times, it can be disappointing though. A new book comes out and everyone and their dog is raving and creating buzz. Naturally then, I want to go out and read this fascinating and spellbinding book. More times than not, I'm disheartened. Maybe my tastes are different than the average reader. Maybe some people don't care about the actual quality of the writing, as long as the storyline is good. Maybe I'm a book snob. I don't know, but what's "hot" is usually my "not."

For a few weeks now, I've been hearing that ever whining buzz in my ear again. I've gone on to read reviews just to get a more varied viewpoint. Everything I read says "great, excellent, magnificent." Some even dare to use the term "masterpiece." I don't throw THAT one around lightly. One reviewer compared it's character to Anna Karenina and Hagar Shipley. (and if you don't know who they are or haven't read their tales, for shame! Go, read!) That is a big shoe to fill.

So, tonight. Tonight I start the book that is calling me hypnotically with the melodic temptation of a snake charmer's flute. I hope that all of the reviews and hype and buzz are more than accurate this time. I hope they don't even begin to describe the greatness of this novel on which I'm about to embark. I'm getting the shakes just thinking about creaking open the stiff new pages. My cold sweats are starting waiting for my kids to go to sleep so I can be alone with my opiate of choice. Please, please, please let this hit be the sweet salvation that's been a long time coming. I haven't felt the sweet delirium of being lost in my vice for an eternity.

Tonight is the night. "The Book Of Negroes" is going to capture my delight and transport me to another world. I want no intervention from it's grasp.


  1. The publishing world needs more readers like you!!!!

    I am the same....if I get into something and can't put it down...dishes pile....meals are quick and easy and the kids are re-wearing socks.... (well, not really, but you get what I mean!! LOL!!) two weeks ago I was reading this one book...a bit slow going, but then all of a sudden...I was so into it...I couldn't stop! I read from about page 160 to the end.

  2. Happy reading!

    I was glad when that book won the CBC Canada Reads contest (it was the only one on the list I'd read at the time so I could relate to their arguments for it!). Do you have "Water for Elephants"? I've joined a book club and that's the first one but I was #157 on the waiting list for it at the library.

    Let us know what you think of Aminata.