Not too sad, not too funny…

Years ago, my running group tried to become a book club. We thought the wine would be more fun than those little water bottles you wear around your waist on long runs.

But the whole idea fell apart when we tried to choose a book.

“I have to read the last page first,” my friend Heidi said. “I can’t read the book if the last page will make me cry.”

“I don’t read funny books,” someone else said. “They’re never funny.”

And so it went…

Failed book club members,
but supportive friends.

Between us, we excluded all possible reads, and we were left with only running.

I feel a little like that failed book club, in my pandemic reading choices. I need something that will hold my attention amidst a thousand distractions, but not something too trivial because I feel as if I should be doing something useful with my time, and not something too sad because there are already a lot of sad things.

This week, I settled on comfort reading, and I’ve been churning through Emily of New Moon at bedtime.

But I’m also listening to the audiobook of My Lady Jane, which is somehow a collaboration between three authors, Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows. It’s an alternative history of England with the quirkiest narrative voice ever, and I’m enthralled.

Next up, and even at this moment waiting for me at the curb-side pick-up at Vancouver Kidsbooks, is The Glass Hotel by Canadian author Emily St. John Mandel. She describes it on her website as: “a ghost story that’s also about white collar crime and container shipping.” (What???)

Emily is the author of pandemic novel Station 11, another capitivating read, even (especially?) during COVID19. I have high hopes for The Glass Hotel… I’ll let you know!

What are you reading these days? And what are your rules for book choices? I’d love to hear…

4 thoughts on “Not too sad, not too funny…

  1. I am reading nothing but my twitter feed. But I love Emily of New Moon. Thanks for the reminder!

  2. It’s definitely a fight to get off Twitter these days, isn’t it? Hope you and yours are well, Sarah!

  3. We are doing well. Able to work from home, so driving each other crazy is our own mild complaint. Thank god the library is open here in Burnaby again. My daughter had spent the entire pandemic reading online fanfiction and manga. It was like she had forgotten what good writing was like. My son, who is NOT a big reader, went the other way, and the pandemic sparked an interest in audiobooks for him. He listens to them at 3x speed, which is also anathema to me as a reader, but you know, for both of them, as we used to say about the rainbow fairies – “any reading is good reading!”

  4. ACK! Rainbow Magic! I’d almost repressed the memory. 🙂

    But you’re so right. And my son listens to his audiobooks on speed, too… though usually only at 1.5. 🙂

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