I had an epiphany today. Those are very rare, and I like to mark them on the calendar. While sitting at the store, alone, bored, staring at the same bookshelf for thirty minutes, it hit me–I will never be able to buy and read all of the books I want. Never. I find that incredibly depressing. I usually complete a book every one-to-two days. I average six books a weeks, twenty-four a month. That’s two-hundred and eighty-eight books every year. I’m proud of that total, especially since most of the students in my classes claim they’ve never finished a book.
Here’s the kicker.
In 2009, there were 288,355 new titles published in the US. If I live for another sixty years and continue reading at the same pace, I will read 17,280 more books before I die. I will never catch up!!
In other news, I’m only two chapters away from finishing Skippy Dies by Paul Murray. It was frightening in its realistic portrayal of teenage boys. I had forgotten I ever behaved that way. I began reading the novel with a healthy dose of skepticism. Without spoiling anything I can tell you that the protagonist dies–on page three. Everything that follows recounts Skippy’s downfall and the many mistakes made by his peers and faculty at Seabrook College for Boys. Michael Schaub of NPR claims that Skippy Dies is “deeply funny, deeply weird and unlike anything you’ve ever encountered before.” I would add deeply moving to that otherwise perfect review.
Have a good weekend, fellow readers.