If you guys have been following my blog even a bit, you know that I am reading less and less books as time passes.
Statistics state that:
This year, till date I have read 12 books.
Last year I had read those many by mid- February itself.
And the year before that, I had read those many in January!
It saddens me- this downward trend.
There are several reasons for that, of course.
Increased amount of studies is one but that had never bothered me before.
Also, last year at this time I didn’t have a blog, nor did I watch movies (too many of them, that is) or T.V. Shows
(Oh! I’ve started F.R.I.E.N.D.S. on the insistence of one of my friends and so far I’m loving it).
But it goes beyond that, I think. It also has something to do with the fact that I don’t read books which are really really really good!
Yes, while rating books on Goodreads I am very liberal and many books that I’ve read in the past 2 years have 4 stars, 5 even. (I rarely go below 3). But the thing is, most of those books fail to make me feel for the characters or the story.
They are enjoyable reads, sure. But they don’t have that thing that Harry Potter had. In spite of it not having a particularly witty narrative, you read the first book and you knew there was no going back.
Okay maybe Harry Potter is too much to expect but they don’t even match up to other good books I’ve read.
I’m not being a snob here saying that I’ve now read all the good books that ever existed and there’s nothing left for me to read now.
That isn’t true and I know it too…
It’s just that I’m not reading those kinds of books anymore. Somehow I’m not stumbling across them.
I’ve read a few of those sorts, of course. But their number is just going down.
These are the books that make me cry only because they ended.
It doesn’t matter if it is a happy ending or a sad one (or anything in between). I cry because there is ‘ending’, period. (Also note that I can’t get to the end soon enough). You badly wish that you can un-read them so you can do it all over again. Yes, amnesia is very welcome too!
The characters of these books stay with you forever. You know them like you know your best friends (better, at times). And once you are done with the book (or series) you miss them so much that it literally hurts to think about them.
Especially if they’re dead (as is mostly the case).
So here is a list of books that actually made me tear up only and only because they were no longer ‘unread’ by me:
1. Harry Potter and The Order of The Phoenix
Notice how it isn’t even the last part.
There is a small story behind that (albeit not an interesting one).
I had the e-books till this one. And I didn’t have the last two books.
And Sirius’ death in the series was the first one that hit me.
Somehow I had watched Cedric’s death in the movie when I hadn’t read the book so I didn’t feel that sad. I mean, I was prepared, in a way.
And Sirius was is my favorite marauder, I can’t really give you reasons but he is. So it was devastating for me and I cried a lot that night. But in between crying about Sirius, my sorrow was laced with the fact that I couldn’t read the next book for the unforeseeable future.
(I read the sixth one six months later… the wait was agony)
So I think OoTP was the first book after finishing which I cried because it was over.
I am not mentioning Deathly Hallows in the list.
Because everyone is suffering from Post-Potter Depression and I am no exception. And what can I say that hasn’t been said before?
2. Where Rainbows End AKA Rosie Dunne AKA Love, Rosie – Cecelia Ahern (I prefer ‘Where Rainbows End’ over the other two!)
(Just realized that I haven’t mentioned the author for the previous one, but siriusly, do I need to?)
This book. It still makes me cry because I miss it so much.
The end isn’t even sad. It is a nice one really. But I wish I could reread it…
I miss this book.
Funny thing is (and I remembered only now) I had read it as an e-book but I had bought a copy after I finished it because I had loved it so much, and it is at my Aunt’s place since forever. She can’t find it now.
Okay, not really funny if you think about it- I feel so sad now…. I want my book! 😥
3. Princess Diaries 10- Meg Cabot
I miss Michael and Mia too much.
These were the characters I thought of when I said it physically hurts when I miss them. My heart starts aching because I want more Mia-Michael!!!!!
Have I mentioned though that I own the boxed set of the whole series? 😀
You can see it there at the upper right hand corner 🙂
But I haven’t reread any except the first two. That’s because I miss them all too much. In the first two, Michael is barely there and I still cried every time he was mentioned. I’m positive that the third one will all but kill me.
And let’s not even talk about the 10th book.
On second thoughts, I don’t just miss Princess Diaries- I miss Meg Cabot!
I’ve read almost all her books and the ones I haven’t read, I have no idea why I won’t. I miss her books too much now.
It’s shameful but I’ll say it: there was this really small period (say, a couple of months) recently when I had forgotten that Meg C was even my favorite author!
Suddenly I was reminded of her and I felt so bad for days after that- so I read the latest Heather Wells (which I hadn’t before) as compensation.
4. Anna and the French Kiss and Lola and the Boy-Next-Door- Stephanie Perkins
When I finished Anna I didn’t know about the sequel so I cried.
Then I found out about the sequel but I didn’t know Anna and Étienne were in it too. And even though I absolutely loved them, I also fell in love with Lola and Cricket.
So I cried.
And I can cry again because Stephanie Perkins won’t release the next soon enough. It was supposed to be November 2013 and now it is August 2014 (or so she says).
Not very Nerdfighterly of her, is it?
(Oh I died and went to heaven when I found out she was one)
[*psst psst* For those of you do not know about this, get ready to be super-excited! Because the next one (Isla and The Happily Ever After) has Josh as the guy!!!!!!!!!!! 😀
Not to mention there will be Anna-Étienne and Lola-Cricket too. 😀 😀 😀
It is gonna be a real treat!]
5. Dan Brown books
Well, there are just like 6 to begin with. Of course I don’t want to finish them all.
I read only one book of his in a period of six nonths, because otherwise I won’t have any left!
I’ve read all now except Inferno, and there’s a reason I haven’t read it yet.
Hey I remembered something; I had these major exams coming up, back in 2012 and somehow I started reading Angels and Demons instead of studying (books tend to do that to me, I get drunk and don’t realize when that happened) and I was hooked, completely hooked.
My mum obviously got worried so she started shouting at me for not studying and I told her (and they weren’t empty threats- I meant them) that I don’t really care about any exam right now and I don’t care if I don’t even write the exam, I simply have to get to the end of this book.
Dan Brown books- I really cannot put them down until they’re over, but I hate myself for having read yet another one and not saving it for later.
6. Confessions of Georgia Nicolson- Louise Rennison
The end of this series is just a teeny-tiny bit anti-climatic. Or maybe abrupt.
I did not cry about this at all, nor will I ever.
It is supposed to be a series which makes you Laugh Out Loud! So crying will sort of defeat the purpose.
And I laughed so much… really. I wish there was more.
Funny thing is (this time it really is) that I didn’t even give a second thought to these books while reading them. I didn’t ever stop to think if I was liking it or not. And until I finished all ten books I didn’t realize how attached I had become to the series and how much I was gonna miss it.
I mostly just forget that I’ve read a series of books so different from any I’ve read. I don’t include it in any lists (favorite books/ favorite series/ favorite authors etc). It is very unconventional to be in any and I’m still undecided about my overall feelings for it. But when I do think about it, I miss it a lot and I wish there was more.
In fact, the same above paragraph (word to word, except replace ‘ten books’ with ‘five books’) perfectly describes my feelings for The Hitch Hiker’s Series.
Wow! What sorcery is this?
7. Eleanor and park- Rainbow Rowell
This book is too fresh for me to discuss actually. But I must mention it at least.
And I didn’t cry after this one because I didn’t have any tears at 4 o’ clock in the morning- my eyes were too worked up already seeing as to how I finished the book in barely 6 hours.
There are probably a few more. But this post is going on and on.
Also, I’ve deliberately left out John’s books.
But if I had to mention just one, that’d be Paper Towns.
Unlike Paper Towns, Looking for Alaska and TFiOS provided you with reasons for which to cry (this not-ending-with-a-preposition thing makes my sentences sound weird!).
Actually I’ll just shut up, whatever I say now will definitely be spoilers so I shouldn’t.
Notice how most of the books I mentioned don’t even have sad endings, yet I cried.
I guess those “happily ever after”s are what you miss in the end.
Happy books in fact have a way of touching your soul like sad books with dead characters don’t.
I’m looking at all you guys who think that a brilliant book needs dead characters. Think about it, does it really?
Meg Cabot had written about something similar on her blog which are my precise feelings on this topic, but of course she did a better job expressing them than I ever could. This is the link if you want to check it out.
My feeling is this: So many people in this world have lost so much, and need so many things. But the one thing we all really need right now are more stories to make us laugh, with heroes and heroines who exhibit “bon courage.” We need them so that we, in turn, can feel inspired to show “bon courage” in the face of hardship, too.
I’m not saying there shouldn’t be any sad stories, because that would be ridiculous, and fake, and a waste.
But the sweetest endings, the ones that stay with you the longest, are the ones where, after the long, hard battle, the good guys win. Because that actually does happen, sometimes.
~ Meg Cabot
In the middle of rambling about not killing book characters, I realized that maybe it is not so much the books I miss (as brilliant as they are), but the times I read them.
You know, those good old days.
I used to spend hours on the laptop simply reading books (I had been newly introduced to e-books and I marveled at the amazing technology because of which you could download books on your laptop for free!).
Now I don’t even see my laptop for days on end (mostly because I use my phone, but it’s just not the same).
Back then, I was so full of hopes and anticipation.
I wanted to visit Paris, Dublin, New York- Japan even!
I thought I’d suddenly turn into this amazing, mature and responsible adult who could take her own decisions and it wouldn’t matter what my parents thought!
I could get a tattoo if I wanted to without talking about it with anyone!
Here I am now, I still have a lot of hopes for my future but now it is all planned. I am still gonna be studying for the next 5 years, and I’ll be at least 22 when my formal education is over. (What happened to those times when specialization in a subject and having at least 2 degrees wasn’t the basic requirement for a decent job?) It feels like by the time I get a job and actually do the job for a while, I’ll be 25.
That’s 5 years away from 30!
The way time flies right now, if it continues that way, I’ll be 30 before I know it!
So when exactly will I visit Milan and shop like crazy? Or go to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter like I promised myself?
I am suddenly starting to feel as if time is slipping away and I’m not doing enough.
As for the responsible adult thing, don’t even get me started. I turn 18 in roughly six months and I cannot do anything that “adults” are supposed to do.
And then there is also the side of me that is very mature.
I don’t believe in YOLO, I won’t get tattoos unless I’m absolutely sure I won’t regret them for the rest of my life. I calculate the risks and benefits of every decision I take.
In fact, listing pros and cons and weighing them against each other is really starting to become my thing.
But what about things like taxes and knowing the traffic rules?
I know there’s Elmify and Mike but I cannot help but worry!
Okay none of this is what I had in mind when I started this post.
I was going to write about how I missed reading wonderful books and maybe mention a few and ask you guys if you thought there were some books that I haven’t mentioned and you died a little inside when you finished reading them. Now I have also done the nostalgia thing, the then-and-now comparisons and have ended up being more confused about everything than I was before!
Way to go Sam!
I should really decide on how I’m going to start and end my posts and how much exactly am I going to put in the middle of it.
This is not very professional of me and more than anything it becomes so difficult to give a proper title for such posts.
What do I call this one now?
And more specifically, how do I end it?