Sunday, August 2, 2009

Literacy and Longing in L.A.

As part of our plan to get back on the Dave Ramsey bandwagon, I've decided to start going to the library again. I have 15 bookcases filled with books! I do not need to purchase any more (right now). So last week I headed to the Warr Acres library, which is small but pretty decent. At least it doesn't smell horrible the way the Shawnee library did, but it's just not quite the Moore library I grew up with. But, the nice thing is that it doesn't really matter that it's small. You can reserve books from any of the other Metro libraries with a click of a button and they'll deliver them to the WA library. Plus you can do inter-library loans with any library in the country. So there's really no reason not to use the library more.

What's ironic is that the first book I selected to read out of the books I checked out on my first trip had this quote near the beginning: "My mother would be appalled to learn that none of my friends go to the library anymore If you want a book, you just go to the bookstore that's closest to your house and buy it." It's called Literacy and Longing in L.A. and the main character goes on book benders when she's depressed or doesn't want to interact with people, which is a lot of the time. There are book references sprinkled liberally throughout the book and each chapter starts with a book quote. She organizes her library by theme, which is something I've actually thought about doing. I loved all of parts of the novel that had to do with reading. "[N]o matter what's going on in my life, I will always need a book." She reads for escape, and she reads to understand, which are two of the main reasons I read. She scorns people who only read for the literary style and don't care about the characters, the story. She mocks those who only read crap or only read things like Oprah's picks just because they want to seem smart. I loved all of that. But somewhere along the way, I stopped caring about the plot. I was reading just for the next book reference. Dora was really rather annoying at times. She wallowed in self pity, and at the end of the book she throws her books against the wall and vows not to get so absorbed in them. And she reconnects with her ex-husband, who really isn't that likable. Although he's certainly better than the boyfriend she has through most of the book. It was just disappointing in the end. I think I set myself up because I identified with Dora so much in the beginning, that when she did things I wouldn't do I would get angry and think, "that's not what she would do!" like I had created her and would know. I did enjoy it overall, but I'm glad it was library book and not one that I had bought.

No comments:

Post a Comment