But when the time came to lay down the cash, I simply couldn't do it.
Just before Christmas I stood in the bookstore holding a Kobo, money in hand, trying hard to remember all of the e-reader pros while a hundred thousand print titles whispered my name. I ended up purchasing a half dozen novels instead, immeasurably satisfied by their weight, their smell, their tangibility. I loved the feeling of adding them to an already towering TBR pile.
A sliver of regret came last week, when not a single Edmonton book store had the new Chelsea Cain novel, The Night Season, in stock. Desperate for my Gretchen Lowell fix, I put out the Facebook SOS - which was answered by Karen and her ever-faithful Kobo e-reader.
As I zipped through Cain's thriller on my borrowed and unfamiliar electronic gadget, I didn't think much about the smell, the weight, the tangibility of the book. I read each word with breakneck speed - because that's how Chelsea's thrillers should be read. Fast. Breathless.
By the end, I'd almost convinced myself that I *could* buy an e-reader, that perhaps my *need* to own a hard copy of every book I'd read was unrealistic, if not annoying to the rest of my family and our groaning bookshelves.
But then I read Maggie Stiefvater's Linger.
Linger is not a book that should be read at breakneck speed, though it may leave your breathless. After each chapter I wanted to caress the cover, stare at it longingly, and dream of writing with such brilliance - somehow making goo goo eyes at the Kobo screen didn't net the same effect.
During last year's 100 books in 2010 challenge, I discovered Shiver, the first in Steifvater's mesmerizing love story of Sam and Grace. I'd heard it called "Twilight, but well written." That description doesn't even scratch the surface.
If Shiver is the story of Grace and Sam, Linger is the story of Sam and Grace. Their love is so raw, so real, so absolutely beautiful, it's easy to forget Stiefvater is writing for a young adult audience. Her prose is flawless, her pacing brilliant, and if I gushed about Chelsea Cain's ability to write raw emotion, I have no words to describe the intense feelings Linger evoked.
Linger is literary at its best.
Though captivated by Grace and Sam's Romeo and Juliet-esque romance, I was equally smitten with the sub story of Cole and Isabel. The bad boy rocker trying to escape his past; the good-girl-gone-bad teenager forcing him to remember. Their relationship is so twisted, and yet, I couldn't stop reading. With every chapter I would say, "Just one more" until there was nothing left but a lot of tears.
If you've said you'll never read another werewolf story. If you've declared war against the paranormal genre. If you've sworn off YA novels.
Then I dare you to read Shiver. And then I challenge you to resist Linger.
The Book In My Bag Today: Radiant Shadows, Melissa Marr