"I thought of everything I had given up for reading."

The Night Bookmobile (Audrey Niffenegger)

Graphic novel. The panel in which she describes reading as if she were eating for two made me wonder if Niffenegger were making a sly comment about why some people read what they read. In other words, do we choose to read, say, Middlemarch on the el train because we think we look clever -- or because we actually want to read Middlemarch? What happens when we read with an mental eye to what our personal librarian will think of us? What happens when we read for all the wrong reasons? What happens when reading supplants life utterly?

"Years passed."

Alexandra is a character not entirely dissimilar to Henry Bemis, who also read without much investment in the life going on about him. For that reason, the book reminded me of a "Twilight Zone" episode -- dark and ambiguous.

Postscript: I am not a fan of Niffenegger's novel The Time Traveler's Wife. At. All. But I found this book rather interesting thought-provoking and compelling, apparently, as it remains on my mind.

A complete list of books read in 2012 can be found here.


Sherry said...

You are one of the few readers I know of who agrees with me that The Time Traveler's Wife is just not that good a book. I am also resistant to the graphic novel format. But I may check this one out.

Renee said...

I am curious to know why you and Sherry didn't like Time Traveler's Wife. I didn't like the movie. I did think the book was sad. But I thought it very clever. Please tell me why.