Sunday, July 15, 2012

Ashamed Of A Book?

Have you ever had one of those quiet days where you just sort of nicely vegetate -- perhaps catch up on browsing blog-friends -- refuse to comb your hair or put on any pants even? [Too much information, Cipriano!]
Anyhoo -- I'm having one of those Sundays.
For instance, my hair? Right now I look like a cross between that mad-scientist guy that drove the souped-up DeLorean in Back To The Future, Dr. Emmett Brown -- and just a basic Neanderthal.
In my browsing, I visited Matt, at his [excellent] booksite, A Guy's Moleskin Notebook.
He was asking a really neat question, which is this:
What book(s) have you read that you’re secretly ashamed to admit?
I thought about it a bit, and answered him, thus:

Matt, this is such an interesting question — and I answer it as you do, I am never really “ashamed” of a book I read. But sometimes I do feel as though cheated, especially if I choose a book for a vacation, and find it boring or… just not the right feel for the time.
Along these lines, there is a book that does bother me a bit.
It is Snow, by Orhan Pamuk. I was reading it exactly at the time when I went home to visit my ailing mother in hospital. At no point did I enjoy the book in the first place, yet, I kept reading it. At the hospital, whenever my mother would be sleeping, I just resumed my reading, and finished the thing on the airplane as I returned to the other end of Canada, where I live.
In the interim, my mother passed away. I got the phone call just hours after returning.

And then — I HATED the book — and gave it away. I did not want to even SEE the book, because it seemed to represent to me that precious time by my mother’s side. Reminded me of my last conversation with her. And in this sense, I was ashamed that in the sacred moments when I was in her living presence, I was diverting the down time by reading a book I never even really liked anyway.

How would you answer the question, dear Reader?



Stefanie said...

I can't say that there is any book I am ashamed to admit I read, embarrassed maybe but not ashamed. I don't blame you for not wanting to keep Snow around given the associations it had.

Cipriano said...

I donated it to a Booksale thing, Stefanie. The cover of it so reminded me of....... that time.
Not to mention that it was a time of much "snow", too.
The book was such a royal dud, too. Like even, I might say, terrible.

Isabella Kratynski said...

Ashamed is a strange, and strong word to use. As Stefanie points out, embarrassed, sure, but ashamed is on another level.

I can imagine that if I'd ever read Mein Kampf, for example, that might be something I'd be ashamed of.

Anonymous said...

Oh that's a sad story ... and, you know, I rather liked Snow though could not manage to read more than 50 pages or so of My name is red.

I think I'm with Stefanie. Shame is a strong word but I really didn't want to read The bridges of Madison County. I did though because I didn't want to disappoint the friend who loved it so much... I didn't like it but I could tell her it was a moving story. She was happy with that.