Thursday, 1 March, 2012

Are you ready for that sort of intimacy?

People rhapsodise about treasures they find in second hand book stores. Secret hidden dens filled with glittering diamonds buried under mounds of coal. First editions, signed copies and even books with previous readers' notes. They say it adds to the charm of the book. Its interesting to see where the book has been. The marks of antiquity, wear and personalization by other readers lend an air of sophistication, mystique and romance to the book. As if the book needed it.
I have never liked 'previously owned books'. When I read a book, I own it. The story that I read in it, no one else would find that story in the book. That is why books are different from movies. In a movie, you're watching what Harry Potter looked like to the director of the movie, but you see in my head, he was cuter. And Hermione was definitely not this pretty. The visualization is in your scope. Its your right. Its the pleasure. Its the reason why no good book ever becomes old or obsolete. A book is reborn every time a new reader reads it. So when I'm reading, I don't want to be disturbed by what some other reader thought or felt. I want to form my own first impression. I don't want ready-made insight, I want to realize it on my own. I want to be in communication with the characters of the book. Sometimes with the author. But not with someone who read it and left little notes along the way. I love to discuss a book with others when I'm done. Learn about the story they found in it. But while I'm reading it, its just me and the book, and we like our privacy.
This is another reason I don't like lending books which I have marked with my notes and thoughts to just anyone. Its intimate. Its like giving them a map of the wilderness of your brain. Its a flowchart of the way your brain functions. And you really have to ask yourself. Are you ready for that sort of intimacy?


  1. I so agree with it. Though i think some movie also have those tendencies. Ignoring the visual interpretation of the characters, there are some things you connect to in movies maybe the character, or the story or just a situation or maybe the point of view only. Either way i do not like second hand books either. They seem impersonal!

    1. I guess I belong to the other side. Love second hand books. Love the parallel stories that runs through them. :)

    2. I know you knew it was run and it was a typo.


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