Tuesday, July 10, 2012

"I like that library books had secret lives."

Join me on my writing journey each week as I post to the Tuesday Slice of Life sponsored by Stacey and Ruth from 

I'm currently reading a great epistolary novel, Same Sun Here by Silas House and Neela Vaswani.    Epistolary is a new term I learned this last year for novels that are written as letters between characters.  Several of my favorite adult books are epistolary novels - 84 Charing Cross Road, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, and A Woman of Independent Means.

I wanted to share these golden lines written by Meena, one of the characters in Same Sun Here:
"I have finished A Tree Grows in Brooklyn for the third time.  It taught me a lot, and I cried all over its pages because it was so real.  When I returned the book to the library, I thought about how maybe someone else will cry over it, too.  I like that library books have secret lives.  All those hands that have held them.  All those eyes that have read them."

I think this might be why I've always loved libraries, library book sales, and used book stores.  It's nice to think that a book has been loved and handled and even cried over by many.

I can quickly recall a few titles that made me cry - Summer of the Monkeys, The Liberation of Gabriel King (I cry every year when I read it to my students), Number the Stars, Out of the Dust, and The Book Thief.  How about it?  What books made you cry?


  1. Most recently, Small as an Elephant by Jennifer Jacobson. I also have read and cried with A Tree Grows in Brooklyn multiple times- the first when I was in high school (let's don't talk about how long ago that was!)and again this last year when I got it on my Kindle. Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand. Wonder by R.J. Palacio. Where the Lilies Bloom by Vera and Bill Cleaver- another I have read multiple times and it always makes me cry, partly tears from laughing so hard but also sad tears. Currently reading The Book Thief. When I started thinking about it, I realized there are a lot of books on this list for me! You named a couple I haven't read. Thanks. I love a good cry.

  2. Thank you for sharing those "golden lines." I have "welled up" with many books but I confess I cried uncontrollably when I read The Notebook, long ago. And of course, Where the Red Fern Grows.

  3. Patricia Pollaco's Pink and Say. This is the hand that touched the hand that touched the hand....