I was just remembering how, last year, I went through about a month of being obsessed with John Harwood’s The Ghost Writer. I talked about it to anyone who would listen. (If I remember correctly, it was Pam who recommended it to me, here on this site, on either If You Like or Weekly Reading Round-Up– thanks, Pam!). A little bit before that, there had been Beatriz Williams’s Overseas, which I couldn’t stop talking about.
This got me thinking about the phenomenon I call “THE book”.
We all have those. It’s the book that possesses you even after you put it down. The book that you keep bringing up to friends, even in the middle of entirely unrelated conversations. (This is also related to the phenomena known as “THE play”–Peter and the Starcatcher, anyone?– and “THE TV show”–yes, Downton Abbey, Doc Martin, and Boardwalk Empire, I’m looking at you– and “THE cutest pair of shoes”.) It’s the book you can’t wait to re-read. It’s the book that you recommend, recommend, and recommend again.
I go through about three or four THE books a year. Sadly, I’m between THE books at the moment. There hasn’t been anything that’s caught me in a “run, don’t walk!” way for a couple of months.
What’s your THE book right now?