“I can forgive and forget... it is so much less exhausting. You only have to forgive once. To resent, you have to do it all day, every day. You have to keep remembering all the bad things.”
I love that Rachel is asking herself, “How have I still not read Middlemarch?” Spoken like an ardent book lover with an unfulfilled and holy reading grail. I get it. Like the need for sleep, I feel it regularly myself. But when our unpaid intern, predisposed to come to the aid of semi-old ladies, recently sent us an article about an avid page turner who read all the Pulitzer winners and then went on to read almost Pulitzer-prize winners, Rachel was dismayed. “How does that work,” she wondered aloud. I pulled out my I-mean-this-in-the-nicest way-possible one-word answer: recluse.
Impressive though that Rae went there—she examined the possibility of pouring over all the winners and near misses. That’s when I questioned if, perhaps, she might have a slight case of what I’m lovingly calling OCB: Occassional Crazy-High Book-Reading Standards. (I guess that’s OCBS, but you get the idea.) Sadly, I don’t suffer from OCB…S. Reality has hammered on my pocket fulla dreams. That and the fact that I’m like Winnie the Pooh’s friend Gopher and “I can’t stand around lollygagging all day. I got a tight schhhedule.” (Rachel suffers from this too.) So, I do the best I can and I get choosy. Downright picky in fact about what I read. It’s so nice that I can count on Rae to send the good stuff my way.
Last week, I finished the birthday book she gave me: The Light Between Oceans. It was a great beach read. In fact, my sis (who was reading Wolf Hollow) and I were the last ones to leave the Atlantic sand in an effort to get a few more pages in. Hard to believe this was Stedman’s first novel. She transported me to a remote island where fairness was elusive and choices weren’t casual. Moral dilemmas have existed from the start of time—none of us escape them. But light, hope, and beauty can always be found if we learn to look for it. Amazing Mark Zusak, creator of The Book Thief, nailed it when he swooned: “An extraordinary and heart-rending book about good people, tragic decisions and the beauty found in each of them.”
p.s. Can’t wait for the movie release on September 2nd!