Finding books to read right now is difficult. To start with, there’s the whole “I don’t give a crap” factor about most topics. For months, the only books I’ve read have been about grief because I want to see how families survive this. At some point I will write a blog post summarizing the grief books that have been most helpful to me, in case that would be useful to others.
Magazines fit my shortened attention span, but do not satisfy me with their content. Yes, I still peruse the eye candy of a gorgeous mud-room or kitchen or the train wreck that is the Kardashians, but they leave me empty.
Novels? Are tough too.
Last Friday I scoured the shelves of the thrift store for something new to read. That store, like all the others, is a minefield for me of memories and pain, especially since Jack was a big reader. The last book he was reading was one I bought him there, “I am the Cheese,” by Robert Cormier. I remembered the title from the 70’s, but couldn’t recall what it was about. I bought it and read it myself before giving it to Jack. He was partway through and was enjoying the strange narrative style.
But what to read next? No Oprah books right now. I’ve read most of them already, and they can be a tad (!) depressing. Chick lit? Seems fluffy and irritating at this point. And don’t even get me started on "Fifty Shades of Grey!" I shouldn’t comment on something I have not read, but I have more than an inkling that all that graphic sexual content would make me cranky. I mean, from what I’ve heard, if those two devoted a smidgen of the time they spent, uh, you know, to feeding hungry children, adopting strays or even picking up cigarette butts and gum wads from the sidewalk, their (fictional) world would be a better place.
So on Friday, after careful consideration, I settled on an adult Judy Blume novel from the early 80’s called “Smart Women.” It had the nostalgia factor (“Forever”) from my not-very-rebellious early-teen years, plus the mommy connection to my kids, (“Ramona Quimby”, and“Superfudge”)
I thought I’d be fine.
When I couldn’t sleep last night and decided to read, I found the plot had more twists than the lighthearted book jacket had let on.
Yeah, so that part about the mom who lost her son in an accident, then got divorced, became a terribly unstable parent to her only remaining child, a daughter, and who ended up in a mental institution, while her ex-husband met the love of his life?
Kind of bummed me out.
Oh well. Maybe I should just read the dictionary.