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Monday, September 29, 2008

The State of the World and Me

One of the things I love most about books is the escape that they offer from the world. I've written before about disappearing into a comforting children's book when times get tough. There is a reassuring simplicity of morals in children's books that reminds me as an adult that not all problems are so complicated and nebulous. In children's books the difference between right and wrong is clear, and usually right wins the day.

With American events being what they are recently, and my sensitive and opinionated nature, I've found it difficult to write for this blog about books and publishing without feeling a little bit beside the point. Of course life will go on, and things will not always be quite so dreary, but in the meantime I'm struggling to keep my outlook positive, and not let the nattering nabobs of negativism get me down.

This morning it was time to begin reading a new book as Wicked by Gregory Maguire had been finished last night. However, as I went through my "to-read" stack all of my literary options seemed so depressing. Why does the literary genre have to be the genre of tragedy and cynicism?

The book I finally grabbed for my bag was The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. I've never read it before, and yet I having a nagging doubt about whether it will be the pick-me-up I need. I'll give it a crack at lunch and see how it goes.

But what say you, readers? Can you make me a recommendation? A book that will carry me away? Can anyone give me a book that can stop me from feeling like the world is coming to an end?


Anonymous said...

Huck Finn is actually a great choice. There something wonderful and moralistic about it that's still teeming with joy. There's a distinctly American hope about it. In the same sense, I'd also tell you to read "The Wind In The Willows". Though it's technically a children's book, I've always found it to be warm and comforting as well as transporting. Good luck on the search for the uplifting.

Andi said...

Just finished Man in the Dark a couple of days ago and while it was dreary in some places I ultimately found it quite hopeful. Auster's moody enough to keep me interested when I can't concentrate on anything else.

stu said...

You could always try Pratchett's 'Making Money' which will at least convince you that no matter how weird the financial sector gets, it's not as strange as all that.

Prince Gomolvilas said...

"Winnie-the-Pooh." Seriously. It's charming and funny and uplifting--but also manages say lots about the nature of the universe. (See: "The Tao of Pooh.")

Stephanie said...

Randika, thanks for the recommendation - I've never read "The Wind in the Willows."

Andi, it's good to know that Man in the Dark won't be as depressing as I expect it to be.

Stu, I've never heard of that (am I showing ignorance here?) I'll have to check it out.

Prince, that's brilliant! Why didn't I think of that? I'm such an Eeyore.