Saturday, October 19, 2013

On being obsessed with Gillian Flynn

I have just finished reading Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl. Well, I didn't just finish reading it; it has been about three days and three hours since I finally finished the novel, which ended more like a whimper than the punch I wanted it to follow through with. No matter, that's not what the point of this post is. (Though, if you want to read that short review on Goodreads, be my guest.) The point is that I hardly read anymore.

This year alone, I've read a total of three and a half books. Allow me to explain: The first book this year was The Fault in Our Stars. I had TFiOS sitting on my shelf for a good year before I ever decided to pick it up. (Side note: why do people constantly add "good" to things when they really just mean "long"? Also, can a year even be long, per sé? A year is as long as it is, which just so happens to be a year.) I fell in love with it the way I fall in love with all John Green novels. I have no idea why it took me so long to read it, but I think it may be that I kept trying to get through Will Grayson, Will Grayson just because I love John Green novels. But I just couldn't. So I picked up TFiOS and read it last spring and loved it.

Then, someone on Goodreads suggested I read Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma, which is overwrought and deals with incest. I didn't know what to think about it.

Needing a laugh, I decided to buy Ellen DeGeneres' latest book. It wasn't funny like the first two books. I got through half of it and said no more. This is the "half" as aforementioned.

So, after hearing about Gillian Flynn's "weird" novel Gone Girl and how it has become a #1 New York Times Bestseller more than a year and a half after it was published, I figured why not. I powered through that novel so quickly, I lost time. Reading new books takes quite an investment, so when you find an author whose voice and prose you just love, you want to cling on to them and never let go. It happened with John Green, and it happened again for me with Gillian Flynn. Halfway through the book, I knew I had to read one of her past novels — and soon.

The $10 price tag for Gillian Flynn's Sharp Objects on Amazon was questionable in a week of tight budgeting. (Hey, I'm a college student. You can't blame me for questioning whether I have the resources to buy a $10 book right now.) And then I thought: The Library! I haven't been there since elementary school. They lend you things for free there!

So I went off to the local library. Closed. I called them up: "…in observance of Columbus Day." What? That's not even a real holiday. I don't understand how—

OK, it didn't matter. I'd just go the next day in the morning before classes.

The next day: Closed. Apparently, for no reason whatsoever, they open at one P.M. on Tuesdays as opposed to the usual ten A.M.… just because they can. I was so over it at that point. But I figured, I might as well try to race there before they close after my classes end. I did so. I got there. A blonde woman, so skinny I thought she would be freezing in the moderate cool air conditioning, greeted me behind the desk. I asked to be reissued my library card. Sure, she told me. And then came a "hmm."

"It appears you owe $45," she said. "But maybe the price will go down if you bring back a lost book." Maybe. Hat in hand, I tell her that I'd need to come back another day.

Which is the best of two evils: $10 for one book or $45 for an endless collection?

But then, it dawned on me that I had never checked anything out from my school's library. A quick search proved they had Sharp Objects in their general collection. The next day, I checked it out from them — even if it took me twenty-five minutes to get through the Dewey Decimal System. Why is that a thing again?

The point is: I have Sharp Objects with me on my desk right now. I want to read it. But I also want to just not do much at the moment. And I want to watch a lot of TV. And I want to write. And I have to do a lot of homework. At least I have until mid-November to take Sharp Objects back.

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