October 4, 2009

Bookish Delights

Some people believe that there are no coincidences, and lately I'm counting myself in that category.

I'd been having trouble reading much more than Buckaroo's Bear Snores On,-- which is excellent, if brief, reading-- when Sweet P announced that she's not really a reader, never has been. The only books she's truly enjoyed, apparently, are the Harry Potter books, and she's not interested in reading anymore.

I lifted my jaw off the floor, said "Ok," nothing more, and made a dash for the library where I found The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman on cd as well as Cornelia and the Audacious Escapades of the Somerset Sisters by Lesley M.M. Blume in hardback.

I swept up Sweet P from her piano lesson and popped Graveyard into the car's cd player. My friend Allyson recommended it, and it's perfect. Very Harry Potter-esque, but with its own ghastly appeal. We listen intently every time we're in the car.

At home I started reading Cornelia so I could talk about it casually at the dinner table. It's about an 11-year-old girl who lives in her pianist-mother's shadow and is befriended by her elderly and worldly neighbor, Virginia Somerset. Cornelia is enraptured by Virginia's tales of her adventures around the globe with her three sisters.

It was the sisters' run-in with Picasso that piqued Sweet P's interest first. Next, it was Virginia's encounter with a famous ghost. Maybe your interest is piqued, too? You know I don't like to give too much away.

"I want to read the book now, but I don't want you to say, 'I told you so,'" Sweet P said last night.

I promised her I wouldn't.

The funny thing is that I grabbed the book randomly, hoping it might be something Sweet P would enjoy, and I began it a bit half-heartedly the day I found out my friend Renato Gasparetti passed away. As I read on, Cornelia's relationship with Virginia reminded me more and more of my friendship with Renato. I thought of all the times I sat at Renato's table and listened to his stories of growing up in Italy, of his days as a prisoner of war, of courting his wife after the war.

I finished the book tonight (while Sweet P waited impatiently for her turn), and I felt like it helped me say goodbye to my friend, just a little bit.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So happy you both found a good read. I haven't been able to read your previous post yet, because I can't imagine a world without that voice that I mistakenly got to read just once. I am so sorry for your loss. xo~FMF