Sunday, February 10, 2013

Judging a Book by Its Lover by Lauren Leto

"Crappy paperbacks are tributes to use.  They allow for cracking the spine and folding pages and rolling the book into a purse or shoving it into a cramped airplane seat pocket.  Hardcovers always feel like a weighty, pricey possession.  Something to be cared for, with a dust jacket to keep on the book and sometimes a small, overly delicate ribbon attached to the binding to be used as bookmark.  The day I change my reading habits to preserve the appearance of my books is the day I start to die inside, for surely I'll have stopped loving to read.  My relationship is with the stories; the book is merely the portal that must be able to meet whatever obstacle come our way so I can comfortable proceed with the story."

"By the end, the book has been used up, but I'm of the opinion that a good book should wear its readability, should bear the remnants of when the owner turned the page too quickly or couldn't put the book away while cooking a meal.  I like to revisit it and find pages full of life from when I was reading the book.  Annotations, dog-eared pages, coffee stains, and pasta sauce splashes - the only torture I won't put a book through is tearing out a page;  the thought of it, missing a couple paragraphs fo the narrative or more, gives me deep anxiety."

"Happiness is a bent page."

While I'm not as hard on my books as she is, I can understand what she's trying to say here.  When given the choice, I always go for the paperback over the hardcover.  And while I try not to break the spines on my books, I do have a tendency to leave them face down on tables or to fold the corner of a page down if I don't have a bookmark handy.  I don't usually make write annotations in my books.  Instead I mark (with pencil so that it could be erased) the passages I want to remember.

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