Ah, my two passions in life. Books and cheese, I mean, love. The cheesy kind, of course. But after reading the title of my post and my cheestastic confession, you may wonder what brie has to do with love, relationships and literature. And you are probably right, for most people, they do not share much common ground – a part from having a seriously creamy and satisfying interior. But my cheesy mind wants to think otherwise and I have come to the realization that books and relationships do have a lot in common. So bear with my silly cheesnificent puns, and let’s cut to the cheese.
I mean… chase.
*I swear, that was the last one.
Books and relationships. Pick your partner wisely. OR RECKLESSLY.
Books and relationships. Or should I say, books ARE relationships? Yes, my little grasshoppers, my big revelation has been unveiled right in the first paragraph of my post. Bazinga! But I believe in you and all things corny so I want to think that you were already aware of this, even if at some level.
The relationship of a booknerd, booklover or even bookster – if I may use the term I hipsterly encoined for my beloved followers – with a book is nothing less than sentimental. The affair between a dedicated reader and a book is as much, if not, more complex than one with another human being. A booklover experiences a few times a year all the stages of love, one night stands, hookups, friends with benefits, just friends, failed dates, express dates, dates where you want to throw a really hot drink to your date’s face, dates that don’t look promising and end up in fireworks or any kind of relationship you can think of. And all that without tinder… we are lucky like that.
If you are rolling your eyes right now thinking “oh not another post about romance”, you can stop the eyelash workout. This one time I ain’t talking about smut. Just scroll down and let’s inspect the different ways a booklover falls in love and the relationships and flings a booklover can experience with his/her object of affection: the book.
Love at first sight or love at first glance of a beautiful cover.
A reckless booklover and a fleeting passion.
You know it. You have picked and compulsively bought a book in the chaos preceded by a severe case of cover lust. You’ve done it once, twice and probably more than a hundred times. And you know what? It’s absolutely okay. We are allowed to be shallow. Who doesn’t like to stare at firefighters holding puppies? You don’t? Oh well, I’ll volunteer myself as a tribute. Now, these relationships based on instalust are per definition a hit or miss business. You can approach a stranger in a bar after being compelled by his or her looks, adorable sexy laugh and probably amazing style, or you can spot all across the bookstore that gorgeous book and instantly know that your shelf needs that cover and you’ll give your firstborn in exchange for it. In these situations, you don’t know what you are going to get. The love of your life and a new addition to your all time favourites? Or an empty but stunning exterior that holds nothing more than hours of yawns? Instalust is reckless and fleeting.
The (book)lover from afar, those who wait for a chance to strike.
This is the story of the craving booklover. That one that falls in love slowly, that one that takes in all the little things and starts realizing how utterly interesting and attractive that book really is. You have probably stolen glances of the book scrolling down instagram, reading blog reviews and 140 characters twitter praises. You’ve slowly taken all in and now appreciation has morphed into obsession. This is the kind of love that makes you sit on the last row of class just so you can observe each and every move your newfound crush makes. The kind of love that makes you create amazon wishlists that you keep revisiting every day to see if maybe the price has dropped to one or two cents. Wishful thinking. So you do that, you wait, you obsess, you love. From afar. You keep scrolling down instagram and you cherish those stolen glances of your object of craving. And one day, you’ll be ready. One day you’ll have the courage to actually sit in the first row and maybe ask for a pen and probably charm the heck out of your crush because let’s face it, you are adorkable. One day, the stars that rule the health of your bank account and your tbr will align, and just then, you’ll strike. That book will be yours to love, and not from afar.
The meticulous booklover. A book is a long term relationship, pick wisely.
A book entails an investment that goes beyond money, even when you don’t go on a buying spree and leave your bank account trembling and suffering from the aftershock for weeks. A book is after all, a long term relationship as long as you may take to read it. A commitment that implies dedication. For some booklovers, and I belong to this group, picking a book is not a matter of randomism. This booklover starts with the premise that the next book has to be the one. And let me tell you, the one doesn’t just pop out of nowhere. Finding this one of a kind involves a meticulous selection process. It implies a long list of requirements and an exhaustive research process. This booklover has high standards. When you belong to this group, and you find yourself in the search of a new partner, there is a checklist that must be met: over 4 star average in goodreads, includes your favourite tropes, avoids your pet peeves, has the seal of approval of your most trusted book reviewers and in my case, has a fleet of ships that sail. You don’t just date anyone, you date knowing that you want a peonies bouquet, a countryside reception and that your dog will be named Mr Dickens or just Charlie whenever you feel playful. In the same way, you pick a book knowing that the likelihood of it becoming a new favourite is high. The hours spent with it will be epic and intense and all things good. You take thee book, to be your favourite, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death or bent spines do you part.
The bookish one night stand. It’s hot, it’s quick and it may not be a reread.
This kind of booklover/book relationship is as fleeting as the cover lust one. This bookish hookup is supposed to satiate and fulfill an urgency and it usually entitles pulling a one nighter. This type of relationship is short-lived but not necessarily less intense. This is the book you pick knowing that it will be one of those quick and page-turning reads. These books don’t hold promises of forever but there is just that one thing about them that makes them enthralling. Addictive. Hot. This is the hottie you take home because you want to, and hell, there’s nothing wrong with it. Thing is, you never know, mission good-morning-breakfast might be aborted.
The tinder date. I swiped right, or did I swipe wrong?
You know those recommendation widgets on goodreads or amazon or any website really? Sometimes I wonder who is in charge of those algorithms. In the goodreads case scenario, you get really, seriously, random recommendations based on the genres you love and the books you read and review. But is it really a match? Chances are, it’s not. Hey, don’t get me wrong, you could very well find the love of your life in Tinder or your absolute all time favourite thanks to a recommendation widget. But your match could also come along with your face carved in a pineapple and find it romantic, or make you sit through the whole date listening to stupid stories. Your book-match could promise magical and fantastical creatures and end up being heavier than eating cereal in concrete. The risk is there, you have the power to decide, right or left?
Now the important question would be: which type of relationship do you have with books? Are you all about the fleeting passions or would you rather settle down with a book you know you are going to love forever?
Leave your comments below and spill your deepest secrets. And remember,
Reading is cool.