Originally, I was going complain about how it is October 15 and it is 85 degrees with 75% humidity and I DO NOT LIKE IT. My allergies are going insane. This is not the gorgeous, crisp fall weather I adore. I can’t breathe and my head hurts and I skipped my second day of yoga bootcamp because I was afraid my head would explode if I sneezed while doing Wheel.
But. I decided to skip yoga and not beat myself up about it. Instead, I went to a new-to-me coffeeshop in my neighborhood. I don’t love the closer neighborhood coffeeshop; it closes at 7 p.m. and it is somehow too cramped and too empty all at the same time. But this new place was perfect. There were just enough people and background noise that I could effectively block them out, if that makes any sense. There was good music. There was black currant iced tea. I cuddled up on a yellow corduroy chair and read for two hours until I finished Twisted by Laurie Halse Anderson.
I’m all about reading books in first-person right now, trying to learn from them. Twisted was a great example. I’m amazed at what a different tone Halse Anderson captures here. I loved Speak because it was lovely, heartbreaking, and evocative. It tackled important issues but so specifically to her character that I never felt like it was a Book About Important Issues. And those things are all true of Twisted, too, but in a completely different way. She writes from the teenage-boy POV in a way that rang true for me. It reminded me strongly of some of my best friends from high school, boys who were swallowed up by rage. I was scared for Ty, but there were also moments when I was scared of him. I love how Halse Anderson gets inside the head of outsiders and makes us privy to their pain and hope and bravery. She’s a wordsmith of the highest order. And I can’t wait to read her newest book, Chains, which was just nominated for the National Book Award.
Then I went to the library and got more books: John Green’s Looking for Alaska and An Abundance of Katherines and another National Book Award nominee, E. Lockhart’s The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks. Other books at the top of my TBR list include The Graveyard Book, Graceling, and Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist. And I want to get my hands on a copy of Lauren Myracle’s Bliss. How can I be grumpy when there are so many awesome books in the world? When there’s a great big orange moon in the sky? When there’s an awesome purring monkey-cat to my left? When I get to help plan a best friend’s bridal shower?
When the librarian stamped my books, I felt a moment of shock. My books are due back on Wednesday, November 5. The election will be over by then. It was simultaneously exciting and terrifying. I am going to focus on the exciting. I’m going to make some quesadillas and black bean salad and watch the debate. And, uh, I might turn on the air-conditioner.