Each of these books revived for me an experience I used to have commonly as a child, but much less frequently in adulthood. I would pick up a book and not be able to focus on anything else until I had finished it. I would read on the bus to school, at my desk during class, and often during lunch break. Late at night I would sneak to my bedroom doorway to read by the light in the hall, which was ostensibly left on to comfort my siblings and I from nighttime terrors. On Saturdays, I would shut myself in the bathroom for hours to read and avoid my chores. On Sundays, I resented the three hours that church took away from my books. As an adult, I read primarily nonfiction, and much more slowly given the multiplying demands on my time, and I thought maybe I had lost that childhood compulsion completely. But with each of these books, the hunger to continue the story continued until I had read both of them in the same week. This I find a little strange, considering that either one could be the most depressing book I have ever read.
Sunday, February 24, 2008
I recently read two remarkable books, and I’d like to talk about them both, in separate posts. The first is What is the What: The Autobiography of Valentino Achak Deng, the story of one of[Continued at Citizen Orange]
’s Lost Boys as told by Dave Eggers. The second is The Devil’s Highway, by Luis Alberto Urrea. Both these books became bestsellers, and have been reviewed and discussed extensively elsewhere. I write about them now because I only read them a little while ago. Sudan