i've lived in chicago 5 1/2 years, but i didn't get a library card until this past june. you may remember it as that morning when, from the general direction of south carolina, you heard a walloping hurrah.
i've mixed feelings about the library because borrowing books from the library exacerbates my fundamental character flaws. namely, a deep-seated avaricious need to accumulate books and words, and a ceaseless desire to please.
case in point:
a few weeks ago, weighed down by a pile of biographies and badly written jackie books, i decided to wander into more light-hearted territory. enter THIS scathing review and georgette hayer, prolific writer of regency romance.
i immediately checked out not one of her novels but eight.
when i went to pick them up, the librarian gushed in wonder. she assured me, georgette heyer was going to change my life.
georgette heyer did not change my life. because georgette heyer is bad. and not in the way that the thorn birds and forever amber are bad. not even like lace- where we open with an abortion scene and immediately move to a woman we don't know entering a room and saying to three other women we don't know, "which one of you bitches is my mother?" no, no. that is good bad.
georgette heyer is bad, bad. to an extent that you are aware of the badness but it doesn't make you want to laugh. it is, instead, burdensome and unenjoyable to a profound degree. for example, the word "pudding-heart" is deployed frequently. without irony.
i would write this off as a wasted day of reading and abandon georgette heyer and her pudding-hearts were it not for the fact that when i returned to the library this week to check out yet another jackie book, the librarian recognized me. she said, you are the girl who is reading all the georgette heyer novels.
and, because it was early and i'd not yet had coffee and, therefore, didn't parse the implications of her word choice, i agreed. i said, yes, i am.
and so now, because this librarian has printed me a check-off list and is cheering me on in my "ambitious literary pursuit," i am the girl who is reading all the georgette heyer novels. all 55.