This blog is basically about how good books are nice and bad books are the pits. And then I get grumpy.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Book lover solidarity

I was in a bookstore recently and a kid was nagging her mother for a book. Well, it wasn't quite nagging so much as very interestedly and earnestly asking for the book.

"Mommy, look!"

Mother, who was an intense looking woman with an angular face and shredded nerves to match, wasn't that interested.

"Mommy, It's called The Magician's-"

"The Magician's what?" mother snapped.

"Nephew," the girl calmy responded.

"Mommy, this book is so-o-o good!"

"How do you know?" mother barked, adding at one point, "I'm trying to do something here."

The little girl, in a naive attempt to engage her mother's attention and enthusiasm which would tear at any book-lover's heart, started to read from the book.

Mother stops her. "Look, you just don't get it, do you!"

Later, I think I hear the little girl sniffing loudly.

Finally, I'm up at the counter. So's mother. Lo and behold, in their small pile of purchases is CS Lewis's The Magician's Nephew. Annoyed at the mother and wishing to vindicate the kid, I casually point at the book and remark, "That's a good one."

"Oh great!" was mother's reaction. I'm not sure if it was sincere or if she was wishing the buttinsky would shut up. But how many times as a child would it have been nice to have someone stick up for you? I like to think that kid was gratified. Book lover solidarity and all that. Of course she may just be an annoying brat who always hounds her bedraggled mom for new stuff.

In that case, oops.

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